Real People, Real Lives
Pushing the Limits: Making Sense of Science
A Reading, Viewing, Discussion Series for Rural Libraries
Application deadline: March 5, 2012
Date posted: January 18, 2012
I. Program Description
The CALIFA Group (a California-based library consortium) presents Pushing the
Limits: Making Sense of Science: a Reading, Viewing, and Discussion Series for Rural
Libraries. This program extends the building blocks of science literacy to two new
audiences: rural librarians and adults in the communities they serve.
Pushing the Limits
Since the beginning of time, humans have imagined and achieved ways to push the
boundaries of the physical world. We want to be stronger, smarter, and more aware, and
we create stories to bring those dreams to life. But many of those stories are no longer
just stories; and with great new advances in science and technology, we are finding ways
in which all of us are able to push the limits every day.
The Pushing the Limits public programs will explore these ideas through a discussion led
by a STEM professional (science, technology, engineering, math) and the local librarian,
using a blended science café and book club model that integrates feature film quality
videos and a recommended (popular) book reading. The overarching theme is one of real
people, real stories, and real science.
The program will launch with 20 pilot sites (stage 1) and using feedback from the pilot
phase, will expand to 100 additional rural public libraries (in stage 2). It is the work of a
unique team of library professionals, scientists, and filmmakers from Dartmouth College,
The Association for Rural and Small Libraries, The Califa Group, Dawson Media Group
and Oregon State University.
In phase one, 20 pilot public libraries in the United States will receive a grant of $2,500,
program materials including videos, and will participate in an on-site training program in
fall 2012, Portland, Oregon.
Access the grant application at http://califa.org/limits.php
Online applications must be submitted by March 5, 2012.
II. A programming grant opportunity: Engage your
rural community in science adventure
The CALIFA Group is opening a national search for 20 rural libraries to join as pilot
sites in a grant project funded by the National Science Foundation. The goal is to
strengthen adult science programming and resources in small and rural public libraries
and to enhance public interest and involvement in STEM topics– science, technology,
engineering and math.
Your application will have a narrative component. Before you compose the narrative part
of this proposal, we strongly recommend that you read these guidelines carefully. If you
do not, your proposal is unlikely to be competitive.
Please write a brief narrative describing your plans for hosting Pushing the Limits:
Making Sense of Science: a Reading, Viewing, and Discussion Series for Rural Libraries.
Describe your program plan, including overall goals, description of target
audience(s), any plans for related programs, and name(s) and role(s)
of your partner(s). (When possible, include letters of support from any
Provide the name and title of the local project scholar, the scholar’s
highest degree, and his or her discipline. In lieu of academic credentials,
discuss his or her knowledge of science and why he/she would be a good
choice for project scholar. (Note: Applications without a confirmed
project scholar will not be considered.)
Describe the publicity efforts that will be used to attract participants.
Describe the methods that will be used to evaluate how well your program
met its goals and objectives.
Summarize your library’s commitment to adult programming in general,
including any prior successful programming, if any.
If selected, you will be required to submit a Program Schedule, indicating
proposed dates, times and projected attendance for the Pushing the Limits series