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Beverly Murphy MLA Scholarship for Underrepresented Students

This scholarship was established in 1973 and renamed for Beverly Murphy, AHIP, FMLA in 2023. Murphy was the first Black President of MLA, first Black chair of the MLA’s Middle-Atlantic Chapter, the first Black editor of MLA News, and the first Black recipient of the Marcia C. Noyes Award. Murphy is a role model for those candidates for the Scholarship for Underrepresented Students to achieve their highest career aspirations. Read more about Beverly Murphy in the Journal of the Medical Library Association, her I Am MLA story, and fellows biography. 

A scholarship of up to $5,000 is awarded annually by the Medical Library Association (MLA) to a student who shows excellence in scholarship and potential for accomplishment in health sciences librarianship. The scholarship is announced at the annual conference of the association, where the recipient will also receive a one-year MLA student membership and free inclusive student registration at the association’s annual conference.


  • The applicant must be a member of an underrepresented group, such as Black/African-American, Latinx, Asian, Aboriginal, North American Indian or Alaskan Native, or Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander.
  • The applicant must be entering a master's program at an American Library Association (ALA)–accredited graduate library school or, at the time of the granting of the scholarship (March), have completed no more than one-half of the academic requirements of the graduate program.
  • The applicant must be a citizen of or have permanent residence in either the United States or Canada.
  • The recipient may receive only one MLA scholarship in a given year.
  • Past recipients of MLA Scholarships are not eligible to apply.
  • Membership in MLA is not required. (discounted student membership is available)


  • The online application must be completed, and all supporting documents uploaded no later than November 15.
  • The recipient and nonrecipients will be notified in March before the public announcement is made.
  • The disbursement of funds will not exceed one year past the date of the annual conference. Payments will be made in two equal installments.
    • The first is made in June after the annual conference.
    • The second payment is made after the fall semester when updated transcripts are received by MLA.
  • The recipient will receive a one-year student membership in MLA and free inclusive student registration to the association’s annual conference.
  • Depending on the qualifications of the candidates, the jury may recommend that the scholarship not be presented in a given year.
  • MLA will acknowledge applications upon receipt via email.

The Scholarship Jury will assess the application and score points based on responses to following questions:

  • What would receiving a scholarship from MLA mean to you?
  • What are your career and/or academic objectives? How do you plan to achieve your goals? Please describe current or future activities that support your plan. 
  • How have your career or academic activities, achievements, and contributions impacted the communities you serve? Describe how these activities, achievements, and contributions impacted you personally. You may include personal, academic, work-related or advocacy examples.

Submission Checklist

    • Completed application.
    • Unofficial, or official, transcripts uploaded in the application from each college or university attended, including community college, undergraduate and graduate colleges.
    • Copy of library school’s catalog or web page, which states the number of credits needed for a degree, uploaded to the application.

        NOTE: One application serves for three MLA Scholarships. One jury reviews all submissions to these scholarships. Duplicate submissions are not necessary.

        Ready to Submit an Application?

        • The scholarship application process is closed.
        • The recipient will be announced in March 2024.
        • Applications will open next in August 2024.

        Scholarship Recipients

        • 2024: Kathleen Konno
        • 2023: Jean Paul Ngezigihe
        • 2022: Jasmine Goodman
        • 2021: Laurier Lynette Cress
        • 2020: Christiana Julsaint
        • 2019: Bradrick McClam
        • 2018: Donna Baluchi
        • 2017: Kelsa Bartley
        • 2016: Luz E. Crespo
        • 2015: Tyler Moses
        • 2014: Christina Meejung Czuhajewski
        • 2013: Kimberly Tate
        • 2012: Ligia Patricia Groff
        • 2011: Phill Jo
        • 2010: Maria Tan
        • Michele Mason Coles (Annual Meeting Scholarship)
        • 2009: Vivian Okyere
        • Margarita Shawcross (Annual Meeting Scholarship)
        • 2008: Manju Tanwar
        • Elana Churchill (Annual Meeting Scholarship)
        • 2007: Paula Maez
        • Lisa Chow (Annual Meeting Scholarship)
        • 2006: Monique Escamilla
        • Ivonne Martinez (Annual Meeting Scholarship)
        • 2005: Shamsha Damani
        • 2004: Rebecca Davies-Venn
        • 2003: Martha Preddie
        • 2002: Crystal Smith
        • 2001: Felicia Smith
        • 2000: Cheryl L. Jacocks-Terrell
        • 1999: Tomeka Oubichon
        • 1998: Barbara Ferrer Kenney
        • 1997: Yan Hong Li (Amy)
        • 1996: Jean Chung
        • 1995: Lora Gault
        • 1994: Hua Yi
        • 1993: Velora Avis Jernigan
        • 1992: Jenifer Lyn Grady
        • 1991: Louis Lik-Fu Tong
        • 1990: Judith V. Rogers
        • 1989: none awarded
        • 1988: Jacquelyn Patricia Cenacveiira
        • 1987: none awarded
        • 1986: Joy E. Summers
        • 1985: Sheila M. Johnson
        • 1984: Eric Brasley
        • 1983: Kathleen Love
        • 1982: Mamie McCain Doss
        • 1981: Omia G. Smith
        • 1980: Phillip E. Tolbert
        • 1979: none awarded
        • 1978: Eleanor Hill
        • 1977: Barbara Best Nichols
        • 1976: Ernestine Andrews
        • 1973: Carol Jean Yates

        Have a question? Contact MLA