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US News World Report Ranks iSchool at Drexel Among the Nations Top 10

May 5, 2009

U.S.News &World Report ranks Drexel University’s master’s degree program in library and information science among the nation’s top 10 library science programs in the 2010 edition of “America’s Best Graduate Schools.”

U.S. News & World Report ranks the program—housed in the iSchool at Drexel, College of Information Science and Technology—9th in the nation, and one of the top two among private colleges and universities. The iSchool at Drexel’s national rankings for its specialties in information systems and digital librarianship are ranked at numbers three and six, respectively. The College also ranks fifth in the library and information studies specialty rankings for health librarianship.

According to the publication, U.S.News & World Report’s rankings are in part based on peer assessment by leaders at other colleges and universities, graduation and retention rates, college resources, financial resources, and student selectivity. The iSchool at Drexel’s graduate program in Library and Information Science has consistently been ranked in the nation’s top 20 programs. This year, it advanced two places and is now among the top 9.

“At the iSchool, we have developed our program to educate students for fields beyond traditional librarianship,” said Dean David E. Fenske. “Students graduate prepared for careers as information specialists, working in public libraries, corporate libraries, academic libraries, museums and Web-based businesses. They manage information, printed and electronic, in a library or online.” The iSchool at Drexel’s graduate program was the second of its kind in the country, and is the nation’s oldest continually running library science program. Graduates from the program work around the world, at various organizations including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Cairo American College, Cairo, Egypt, The Children’s Hospital of Pennsylvania, Harvard University Law School Library, The American Philosophical Society, Baltimore City Public Schools, QVC Television Network’s Information Services Department, and The J. Paul Getty Trust Getty Research Institute. It is one of 62 American Library Association-accredited programs nationally.

“Librarianship has been an evolutionary field,” said Fenske. “Demand for information specialists continues because we as people continue to produce new information. While the format may change, with the Internet replacing physical documents in some cases, the need for skilled professionals to manage information remains the same.”

According to the American Library Association, there are an estimated 123,129 libraries in the United States, a number which includes public libraries, academic libraries, school libraries, special libraries (such as law, medical and religious libraries) and armed forces libraries. Corporations, law firms and government entities employ librarians to manage information, documents, archival materials, and electronic resources. Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics states that nearly 60 percent of librarians are projected to reach the retirement age of 65 by 2016, providing additional employment opportunities for future librarians.

Founded in 1892, The iSchool at Drexel educates students in information science and technology at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels and features Drexel University’s Cooperative Education program. The College’s mission is empowering society by uniting people, technology, and knowledge through innovative education and research. The iSchool at Drexel is a founding member of the iSchools Caucus of 21 prominent colleges dedicated to preparing students for careers in the iField — connecting people, information and technology. For more information visit www.ischool.drexel.edu

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News Media Contacts:

Susan Haine, iSchool at Drexel 215-895-6271 or susuan.haine@ischool.drexel.edu

Niki Gianakaris, Office of University Relations, Drexel News Bureau 215-895-6741, 215-778-7752 (cell) or ngianakaris@drexel.edu

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