Community Change Agent Program

A Strategy for the Future of New York's Libraries

NYLA's Sustainability Initiative provides New York's library leaders with time and resources to articulate how libraries adapt to our changing world while, as co-creators, shape strategies that ensure libraries remain vital, rebound from disruption, and provide on-going value to the communities they serve.

Thank you to all who applied for this program. We'll be engaging with our first cohort at NYLA Annual Conference in Saratoga Springs. We will be accepting applications for our next cohort in Spring 2018.

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For a brief introduction to the program, watch this!




The New York Library Association’s Sustainability Initiative training program

will begin at NYLA’s 2017 annual conference.


This competitive program:

  1. is open to all library types
  2. is open to all library workers (no MLS/MLIS required)
  3. will provide training sessions that take your team from idea to implementation
  4. will include free food and accommodations at a retreat style session in May 2018
  5. will provide access to experts as mentors who will stay with teams through implementation for up to a year after training has concluded.


Applicants must:

  1. submit a community challenge they would like to address
  2. be willing to complete a community assessment and participate in community engagement work that may test your assumption about the challenge you've selected
  3. agree to attend four in-person sessions
  4. agree to cover the cost of travel and accomodations for three of the four in-person sessions
  5. agree to participate in weekly online mentor sessions and monthly online cohort sessions (plan on no less than an average of 3 hours a week)
  6. name a community partner for the application and maintain the relationship through the duration of the training and project cycle
  7. provide a signed board/dean/supervisor commitment to support attendance at the workshops, weekly/monthly meetings, and for the project work
  8. commit to serving as a mentor for future cohorts of the NYLA Sustainability Initiative Community Change Agents program for at least one year.




For in-depth information on the program and the application process, watch this archived information session.