Katherine Sydenham '07 Recognized by
Middle East Librarians Association
by Michael Lott
Katherine Sydenham '07
Katherine Sydenham '07 has been awarded the George Atiyeh Prize by the Middle East Librarians Association (MELA). The award provides her with a stipend to attend both the MELA and Middle East Studies Association annual meetings; she will also have the opportunity to publish a report in MELA's official journal.
At Swarthmore, Sydenham majored in Religion with a Women's Studies minor. She also cultivated a strong interest in Arabic and spent a semester abroad in Damascus, Syria. An Andrew W. Mellon Foundation internship and grant awarded by the Swarthmore College Library allowed her to develop library skills over two successive summers, including archiving and reference work, and material reclamation and preservation.
After graduation Sydenham moved to Sana'a, Yemen to serve as a program officer at the Yemen Language Center, arranging travel, housing and other accommodations for international students. Currently, Sydenham is pursuing a Library Science Master's degree at St. John's University in Jamaica, New York, focusing on Arabic language materials. Her hope is to return to Yemen to assist with the development of its library system and to promote literacy among the Yemeni homeless population.