Guidelines: Margery C Ramsay Scholarship

The Margery C Ramsay and Barrett Reid scholarships are awarded in alternate years by the Library Board of Victoria to Victorian public library staff to support their leadership development.

The Board's responsibilities in relation to public libraries are defined in the Libraries Act 1998. They include a responsibility ‘to oversee cooperation in programs with libraries and information organisations to promote access to library and information resources’ and a responsibility ‘to exercise leadership and promote high standards in the provision of library and information services’. Awarding the Margery C Ramsay and Barrett Reid scholarships is one way that the Board promotes high standards in the public library sector.

Value

The 2018 Margery C Ramsay Scholarship is valued at up to $20,000. Applicants can apply for any amount up to a maximum of $20,000. 

Eligibility

Applicants must:

  • be employed within a Victorian public library service and remain employed within a Victorian public library service for the duration of the scholarship
  • have a proven record of motivation, as well as interest in and commitment to the values of librarianship and public libraries.

Applicants do not have to be qualified librarians or library technicians. Applications are welcome from managers and staff at all band levels.

Applications can be made jointly by more than one applicant. Joint applications can be submitted by employees at the same or different library services.

Applicants who have previously been unsuccessful are welcome to apply again or resubmit previous applications.

Past recipients of a Ramsay or Reid Scholarship may reapply after a period of five years (from the date of the award of their previous scholarship).

Scope

The scholarships can be used to fund a broad range of activities, including:

  • secondments or internships at a library service or other relevant organisation in Australia or overseas
  • participation in work exchange programs or study tours organised by library associations or other bodies
  • research into issues relevant and important to the future of Victorian public library services, in your own library service or other library service/s within Australia or overseas
  • further education, such as university, TAFE or short courses in librarianship, leadership, management or specialist areas of study (see the FAQs below for more details)
  • attendance at a conference or forum in Australia or overseas.

Applicants are welcome to propose other activities that support their leadership development. 

The scholarships aim to develop future leaders in the Victorian public library sector. As such, your application must show how your proposed scholarship program will support your own professional development. Your application must also demonstrate how you will share your new knowledge and skills to benefit your own library service and the Victorian public library sector as a whole. 

Scholarship funds can be used to cover:

  • study/course fees
  • conference or event fees
  • travel costs (e.g. transport, accommodation, meals and travel insurance)
  • publication costs (e.g. professional editing and printing)
  • research support costs (e.g. consultancy fees, survey data analysis, administrative support)
  • staff replacement costs – paid directly to your employer to provide backfill staffing during your scholarship program – which should not constitute more than one-third of the total funds requested
  • other costs by prior agreement.

Scholarship funds cannot be used to purchase computer equipment or mobile devices, nor to supplement your personal income (pay your salary, fee for services, or personal living costs). Your employer is expected to continue to cover your salary during this professional development program. 

Applicants are encouraged to contact the Scholarship Administrator to discuss the viability and feasibility of proposals. All enquiries will be treated confidentially.

How to apply

Applications must be submitted using the 2018 Margery C Ramsay Scholarship application form. In your application, you must provide all the information requested to be considered for the award. Please include:

  • a detailed description of the scope of the application
  • clear objectives, rationale and performance indicators
  • key outcomes and benefits for the applicant, their employer and the Victorian library sector
  • commitment from or contact with the organisations to be visited or worked with
  • a timeframe for completion of the proposed program, starting no earlier than January 2019
  • a strategy for communicating the outcomes of the scholarship
  • a detailed budget, including other funding contributions where applicable
  • demonstration of the applicant’s ability to implement the proposed program
  • a two-page summary curriculum vitae that indicates highlights and achievements to date
  • a letter of support from the applicant’s employer
  • two letters of reference.

Letter of support from the applicant’s employer

A letter of support from the applicant's employer is required. This should be the library service manager or CEO of the applicant’s council/regional library corporation and should indicate the employer's willingness to allow time to participate in the proposed scholarship program.

Referees

Two letters of reference, using the supplied forms, are required from referees of your choice. These references will be confidential and are to be mailed directly to the Scholarship Administrator by the referees. The Administrator may contact the referees on behalf of the selection panel for further information.

Assessment 

Applications will be assessed by a panel of representatives from the Library Board of Victoria, State Library Victoria, Public Libraries Victoria Network and the Municipal Association of Victoria.

Applications will be assessed on the following criteria:

  • quality and clarity of proposal 
  • benefits to the individual
  • benefits to the employing library service
  • benefits to the Victorian public library sector
  • effective planning (timelines, budget, communication strategy)
  • ability to deliver the proposal
  • innovation
  • references.

Timeline

The timeline for the selection process is as follows:

  • Applications close: 22 June 2018
  • Selection process and approval: July–October 2018
  • Recipient/s notified: October 2018
  • Scholarship/s awarded at a presentation event: November 2018

Applicants may be asked to provide more information in written form about their proposals.

Interviews may be arranged for shortlisted applicants.

The Library Board of Victoria reserves the right not to award the scholarship.

Agreement and reporting requirements

The successful applicant will be required to sign a Scholarship agreement (terms & conditions) before the Scholarship is awarded. The agreement covers reporting timelines, use of copyright materials, plagiarism, acknowledgements, use of social media and research protocols. 

Within one month of the scholarship being awarded, the recipient must submit Program and Communication plans detailing the planned activities, timelines and communication activities for their scholarship program. Preparing the Program Plan allows the recipient time to make travel arrangements, confirm visits to host organisations etc. The Communication Plan details how the recipient intends to share their enhanced skills with others in the library sector to maximise the collective benefits of the scholarship. At a minimum you should plan to present at a general meeting of Public Libraries Victoria Network.

During the scholarship program, the recipient will be required to submit brief quarterly progress reports to the Scholarship Administrator.

Within six months of completion of the program identified in their scholarship proposal, the recipient must forward a final report to the Administrator, which will be submitted to the Advisory Committee on Public Libraries (a committee of the Library Board of Victoria). The final report should cover:

  • the background to the recipient’s scholarship program, including rationale and objectives
  • the full schedule of activities, including libraries, organisations and individuals contacted and/or visited
  • a substantial piece of reflective writing, outlining the personal learning, immediate implications for work practice at the recipient’s library service, and recommendations for the wider library sector
  • a reference list or bibliography (if applicable).

The recipient will also be required to submit an acquittal of scholarship funds.

Templates for the Scholarship agreement, Program and Communication plans, progress reports and acquittal of funds will be provided. There is no template for the final report.

Applications

Applications for the 2018 scholarship closed on Friday 22 June 2018.

Please direct any questions to the Scholarship Administrator on 03 8664 7425 or rellard@slv.vic.gov.au. All enquiries will be treated confidentially.