Advisory Board spotlight: Selenay Aytac

Selenay Aytac photographMy passion for learning started as a little girl, I was a frequent patron in my school library, and always had that great sensation of climbing stairs up to the knowledge center. This was one of the most beautiful school libraries in Istanbul, Turkey. Not surprisingly, I chose to be a library science major in college and pursued my dream to learn more and help others to learner more as a librarian. I worked at a variety of college libraries in Istanbul Turkey while I was pursuing my master’s degree in Business. During my studies, I have examined the total quality management principles and the use of quality standards in college libraries. I was awarded a very prestigious international IFLA/OCLC fellowship in Dublin, Ohio and started Ph.D. classes in New York. I began to focus on general research in librarianship in 2003. During my doctoral studies, practitioner research was one of my research interests. I was awarded ALISE/Bogdan Wynar research paper award for the study titled: “Recent Library Practitioner Research: A Methodological Analysis and Critique.” After completing my doctoral studies, I taught both undergraduate and graduate courses at Dowling College, Long Island University, St. John’s University, Pratt Institute, SUNY Farmingdale, and Valencia Polytechnic (Spain). Since I have received tenure at Long Island University, I have been able to allocate more time to research and scholarship particularly mentoring researchers. I also won a Fulbright senior scholar award for the year 2015. I am a professional student, and during my journey to excellence, I have taken courses both offline and online format from a variety of institutions including Harvard and Bulgarian Academy of Sciences. Currently, I am enrolled in a master’s degree program in Education at Long Island University.

1) Why are you participating in the IRDL Advisory Board?

IRDL is a fantastic program with many excellent participants. It is very likely that many of them will publish in many prestigious LIS journals soon. In the end, this is one of the reasons of this program; to assist young scholar-practitioners to develop the capacity to conduct exceptional research. This is why I have participated in the IRDL Advisory Board, and hope to contribute to the advancement of practitioner research. I also hope that each one of our participants will excel and this is what we can do to assist them in this rigorous research process.

2)  What impact do you hope IRDL has on the library community?

IRDL is a one of a kind program, and I believe that this program will improve and increase practitioner research across the country. Furthermore, in today’s society, research is needed more than ever for libraries to remain relevant and sustain their reputation for knowledge discovery and innovation. I do hope that IRDL will help to close the gap between research and LIS practice.

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