Robert A. and Ruth Bywater Olson Fellowship
The Olson Fellows
Juli (Williams) McLoone
Juli holds a BA in English and Anthropology from Indiana University, an MA in Anthropology from the University of Iowa, and completed the dual Center for the Book & School of Library and Information Science program in Spring 2009. She is currently special collections librarian at the University of Texas San Antonio.
Nana (Diederichs) Holtsnider
Student in the dual Center for the Book & School of Library and Information Science program, Nana holds an MA in Comparative Literature from Colorado and a BA from the University of Iowa. Finishing the Fellowship in June 2008, she joined her husband, a diplomat in the U.S. Foreign Service, in Tunisia; and supported by a Jacob Javits Fellowship entered the PhD program in Comparative Literature at the University of Chicago in Fall 2010, .
Specializing in documentary photography of the American West, Rachel completed her PhD in 2007 and is currently Assistant Professor of Art History at the University of Texas at Tyler.
A native of Lansing, Iowa, Robert "Bob" Olson earned an undergraduate business degree from Iowa in 1933, working part-time as a student assistant in the Libraries, and graduated from the College of Law in 1935. He married Iowa City native Ruth Bywater in 1937 and worked in the public utility industry in Chicago until 1947, when he joined the Kansas City Power and Light Company. Over the next 26 years Olson held most of the executive positions in that company, becoming president in 1960 and retiring as chairman of the board in 1973. He was very active in the Kansas City business community, serving on the boards of several local corporations and volunteering his time among civic and cultural organizations. Ruth Bywater Olson died in 1979; Robert Olson in August 2003. His estate gift to the University, some $5.5 million, benefits nine programs, and includes the Robert A. and Ruth Bywater Olson Special Collections Fund. Income from that fund underwrites the Olson Fellowship program.
The Olson Fellowships are designed to support graduate students in the course of their academic work; provide on-the-job training at the immediate pre-professional level for students who are or may become interested in Special Collections librarianship, museum curatorship, achives administration, or similar career paths; and offer opportunities to accumulate and document significant academic and work experience and accomplishment.
One Olson Fellow is selected each spring and offered a two-fiscal-year 50% (20 hr/week) Graduate Research Assistant appointment. As a graduate assistant, the Fellow earns a full-year stipend, has fringe benefits, qualifies for tuition support, and is classified by the University as resident of the State of Iowa for tuition purposes during the semesters they hold an appointment of 25% time or greater and any adjacent Summer Session in which they enroll. Graduate assistants must continue to be enrolled as students and forfeit the assistantship should they withdraw or graduate.
The terms and conditions of employment in this position, including but not limited to wages and benefits, are governed by a collective bargaining agreement between the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, and UE Local 896/COGS, the union representing graduate teaching and research assistants at the University of Iowa. A copy of this collective bargaining agreement may be viewed from the University web site: http://www.uiowa.edu/hr/relations/bargaining/cogs/cogs.html or from the Union web site:
In the second year of their appointments, Fellows will build on the experiences they have had in the first, and they will take on more explicitly management roles. Their first assignment, for example, will be to orient and train the incoming Fellow. They will also design and supervise projects that include other student assistants. Fellows are expected to make reasonable progress toward the academic goals they outline in their applications. Fellows will be encouraged to take part in professional activities by attending meetings and conferences such as RBMS, MAC, SAA, ALA, ILA, or SHARP, a course at Rare Book School, or appropriate scholarly conferences. To support this, they will be guaranteed $1000 each year to underwrite travel or conference expenses.
Olson Fellows are selected by competition. This competition is open to incoming students who have been accepted into a graduate degree program, as well as students who are currently enrolled in a graduate degree program. Students in the School of Library and Information Science, in the University of Iowa Center for the Book, or the English, History, American Studies, and Art & Art History programs may have particular interest, but applications from students in any graduate program will be carefully considered.
Each candidate must submit a résumé and a statement outlining their academic and career aspirations and describing how appointment as an Olson Fellow would specifically forward those aspirations. The statement is particularly important and should not exceed three (3) typed pages (about 1000 words). Contact information for one or two references who can speak to the candidate’s academic and career aspirations should also be submitted. Materials should be submitted in PDF or Word format as attachments to the email address email@example.com.
Applications for the 2013-2015 Fellowship will be accepted beginning Monday, March 4, 2013 and must be submitted not later than 5 p.m. Monday, April 1, 2013. A small number of candidates will be interviewed by Special Collections staff in April. The 2013-2015 Olson Fellow is expected to begin work on July 1, 2013, or at a subsequent mutually-agreed date.
Refer questions and submit applications to: Greg Prickman, Head, Special Collections & University Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, IA, 52242-1420 (319-335-5921), firstname.lastname@example.org. Attachments to email are preferred.