Fall 2021 Blair Award Recipients: Sarah Arzate and Lauren Nielsen

Sarah Arzate and Lauren Nielsen are the fall 2021 recipients of the Robert and Rita Blair Memorial Award. This coveted award is presented to graduating students who show special promise in providing library services to children and youth. The LIS faculty select the awardees based on high academic standing and strong evidence of professional leadership.

While a student in the LIS program, Sarah Arzate has been focused on children’s services via co-founding The Makana Aniani Hawai`i Children’s Book Award program, and fostering a collaborative community of practice with colleagues via working with the UHM LIS student group, Hui Dui. Sarah’s interests have involved school media and public library services. We look forward to more amazing contributions to the LIS profession from Sarah, throughout her career.

Nielsen served as president of Hui Dui, holding virtual events and a virtual student graduation ceremony during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a practicum student in the Sacred Hearts Academy Elementary Library, she and her cooperating librarian, Laurel Oshiro, collaborated to genrefy the collection to make it easier for students and teachers to find books by topic. Lauren and Laurel are co-presenting about these efforts at the upcoming fall 2021 conference of the Hawaiʻi Library Association and the Pacific Islands Association of Libraries, Archives, and Museums.