As a Fulbright Specialist, Mega Subramaniam used her expertise to train librarians in the Kyrgyz Republic on how to improve their engagement with youth.
Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Youth eXperience (YX) Lab at the University of Maryland iSchool, Mega Subramaniam, participated in the Fulbright Specialist program in the Spring of 2019. As a Fulbright Specialist, Dr. Subramaniam traveled to the Kyrgyz Republic in order to teach librarians how to better interact with youth. In Bishkek, the capital of the Kyrgyz Republic, Dr. Subramaniam led workshops which focused on teaching librarians how they can help youth co-create their own learning experiences.
Dr. Subramaniam shares that, "she really enjoyed finding creative ways to change mindsets about how to effectively serve youth." During one workshop, she instructed the librarians to create a tactile representation of a connected learning program for their library using different materials such as arts and crafts materials.
Additionally, Dr. Subramaniam spoke to a group of undergraduate students at the Republic's only school for library studies. After meeting with them, she shared that “the next generation of librarians in the Kyrgyz Republic is very enthusiastic, open and represents both young men and women. It’s great that so many of them want to go back to their communities to serve at libraries where they grew up.”
Dr. Subramaniam hopes to bring students from the University of Maryland to the Kyrgyz Republic and is developing a new study abroad program in library sciences.