Are there scholarships or grants available specifically for studying rare books and manuscripts?
Neither the ALA nor the ACRL sponsor any scholarships specifically for MLS students in the rare books and manuscripts concentration. The Society of American Archivists and the Midwest Archives Conference support several scholarships for graduate study in archives administration, whether as part of an MLS or history degree. Other scholarships, including ones based on merit and diversity and for paraprofessional library staff, are posted on the ALA Scholarship Program page: http://www.ala.org/ala/educationcareers/education/scholarships/index.cfm
MLS students who receive scholarships often obtain them through the library school that they attend. Usually the application process for these scholarships is done automatically as part of the application to the degree program. At the time that you receive your acceptance letter to a school, normally you will also be notified of any scholarships that the school has awarded to you. To see whether the library schools that you are considering offer any scholarships, check their web sites; the information is usually found under "Admissions" or "Financial Aid." Many library schools also offer limited numbers of Assistantships to cover tuition expenses. The duties involved in assistantships can vary considerably, and may include teaching, research or library work. Consult the Admissions Office of the schools you are considering for more information.
For continuing education and conferences related to rare books and manuscripts, there are several scholarships available:
- Rare Book School Scholarships
- RBMS Preconference Scholarships: check the web site for the specific Preconference year you wish to attend.
- SAA Conference Scholarships for Library Students