Print Page   |   Sign In   |   Register
CLA Scholarship for Minority Students in Memory of Edna Yelland
Share |

Scholarship information | Current award recipients | Past award recipients

CLA Scholarship For Minority Students in Memory of Edna Yelland

The CLA Scholarship for Minority Students in Memory of Edna Yelland encourages and supports ethnic minority students in the attainment of a graduate degree in library or information studies and encourages commitment to the improvement of library services to ethnic minority communities.

Edna Yelland graduated from the California State Library School in Sacramento, obtained a County Librarians Certificate and served as the librarian for Tuolumne County and then San Mateo County. She later headed the Cutting Branch of Richmond Public Library and, from this position, became executive secretary of the California Library Association from 1947 to 1963. It is in memory of this gracious woman who worked so hard to promote the goals of the association and of the profession that the Edna Yelland scholarships are awarded. A profile of Edna Yelland is available here.

A maximum of three scholarships are awarded each year. Recipients are each awarded $2,500, a one-year student membership to CLA, and honored at the CLA annual conference.  Recipients are encouraged to enroll into CLA's Mentoring Program.

The CLA Scholarship for Minority Students in Memory of Edna Yelland is funded by CLA's Edna Yelland Scholarship Fund. Contributions to the fund are tax-deductible and will enable CLA to continue supporting ethnic minority students and encouraging commitment to the improvement of library services to ethnic minority communities in California.

If you would like to contribute to CLA's Edna Yelland Scholarship Fund, please send your check or money order to the CLA office or use our online donation form. For more information on making a contribution, please contact the CLA Executive Director.

Application information for the CLA Edna Yelland Scholarship.

2018 Scholarship Recipients

Danny Le, San Jose State University           

Danny Thien Le is a first generation Vietnamese-American currently pursuing his MLIS degree at San Jose State University. For over 18 years he has dedicated his life towards creative community building and activism through poetry, event planning, arts & music advocacy, fashion entrepreneurship, and innovative cultural exchanges within the city of San Jose and beyond.

Acting as a liaison between different industries and communities, his reputation for mediating new collaborative efforts has shown through his work with such institutions like Universal Grammar, Cukui Clothing, San Jose Public Library, The APIA Spoken Word & Poetry Summit, and POW! WOW! San Jose, among others.

He currently works for the SJPL at the Teen HQ, where he serves downtown San Jose’s young adult population through makerspace trainings, VR demonstrations, event programming, and peer mentorship. Danny believes libraries will continue to grow and thrive just as long as they stay open to new innovations and ideas presented by the unique populations they serve. As a Southeast Asian-American male entering the LIS field, Danny feels it is his duty to represent the many diverse voices and professions he is associated with to the greater library world and its affiliated networks.


Melissa-Ann Reyes, San Jose State University                                   

Melissa-Ann Reyes is a second-generation Filipina pursuing a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science at San Jose State University. A mother, case manager at a community-based non-profit, and long-time grassroots community organizer, she hopes to align her journey towards public librarianship with her experiences serving working-class and immigrant communities of color. She spends much of her time organizing alongside vulnerable residents against displacement, gentrification, and for truly affordable housing in San Francisco, utilizing personal testimonials and community narrative building as an organizing strategy to exercise political power, to fight back, and to win. Fueled by a passion to democratize institutional spaces and resources for people who have historically been denied access to information that impacts their lives, Melissa-Ann is committed to continue empowering the communities she serves by uplifting marginalized peoples’ voices and stories, as well as documenting and preserving cultures, histories, and the resistance of these communities.

A bookworm and writer, Melissa-Ann has been reading and writing since childhood to imagine herself and people like her reflected on the page after years of feeling disempowered. She has been published in Filipino literary publications such as {m}aganda magazine and Walang Hiya: Literature Taking Risks Toward Liberatory Practice.


Yer Vang, San Jose State University                                                   

I am a Hmong American refugee who was born in the refugee camps in Ban Vinai, Thailand. My family and I immigrated to Fresno, California in April 1991 when I was one year old. As a young child, visiting the library was not a norm for me since my parents didn’t know how to navigate the public library system. They did not speak English nor did they read and write in English. My parents have high hopes for my siblings and me to go to college. They have always encouraged me to pursue my education.

In May 2015, I graduated from CSU Fresno with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work. While I was completing my undergraduate program, I was employed with Fresno County Public Library as a Library Assistant. Upon completion of my program, I remained working at the library. I am the first of my 8 siblings (5 brothers and 3 sisters) to attend graduate school and pursue a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) degree at San José State University.



Scholarship Information

Application period
The 2019 scholarship application period closed on Monday, April 15, 2019 at 5:00PM PST.

Applicants must:

  • be US citizens (or permanent US residents) and permanent California residents;
  • be enrolled in an ALA-accredited master's of library and information science or information studies program and have completed one or more courses (applications from students at institutions actively seeking accreditation are also welcome);
  • intend to work in a California library upon graduation;
  • be a member of one of the following ethnic minority groups: African American or Black; American Indian or Alaska Native; Asian; Latino/Hispanic; Pacific Islander;
  • provide a description of your financial need; and
  • be available for interview by the Edna Yelland Scholarship Committee. Individuals will be chosen for oral interview based upon the merits of the written application.

How to apply
Applicants should submit the following to CLA:

  • An explanation of your current financial situation (including salary, number of dependents, etc.).
  • A list of all scholarships and financial aid for which you intend to apply and/or have been awarded for graduate education.
  • The names and addresses of the educational institutions you have attended and, for each institution, your highest degree attained (if any), your years of attendance, and your subject or field of study.
  • A list of your employers, dates of employment, and a brief description of your responsibilities for any library experience.
  • Information you would like to tell us about any volunteer experiences.
  • Names and contact information for two professional references.
  • An essay discussing your interest in librarianship, your academic or professional goals, and how this scholarship would help achieve those goals. The essay should include all of these topics, be grammatically correct, and be 1,000 words or less.

Please note: when submitting supplementary files by email, please label your files as follows: Yelland_your last name_document (e.g. Yelland_smith_educational institutions; Yelland_smith_essay).

Applications should be submitted using the online application form below. Supplementary files may be emailed to Holly Macriss.

Further information

  • The CLA Scholarship for Minority Students in Memory of Edna Yelland is coordinated by CLA's Edna Yelland Scholarship Committee.
  • The committee reserves the right not to award scholarships if qualified candidates are not found.
  • The committee does not provide feedback on applications submitted.
  • The amount of each scholarship may change depending on available funds and the financial need of applicants.
  • Award recipients will be asked to submit a photograph to be used in award publicity.
  • Applications and all supplementary materials must be received by 5:00pm on the submission deadline.

Application period is now closed

2019 Edna Yelland Scholarship Committee

  • Erin Christmas, Riverside Public Library
  • Alysha Cisneros, Ontario City Library
  • Erin Peak, Carlsbad Public Library
  • Ricardo Ramirez, Sacramento Public Library (Chair)