Burnaby Public Library is pleased to announce that Nobu Kawaguchi and Maité Mayeta Cumba are the 2023 recipients of the Picard Trust Awards. Both Maité and Nobu will receive a scholarship of $2,500 each to apply toward their Master of Library and Information Studies.

Shortly after immigrating to Canada in 2006, I enrolled in English as Second Language (ESL) program at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. At Kwantlen, I worked as a student assistant in the Kwantlen Library. This was my introduction to library work which encouraged me to get professional credentials to become a library worker. In 2014, I graduated from the Library Technician program at Langara College. Since then, I have been working in public and academic libraries. Through my graduate studies and work at Burnaby Public Library, I have learned the value of collaborative and cooperative work. As a future librarian of colour, I want to focus on Indigenous Librarianship, Library Services for People with Disabilities, Equity and Inclusion, Technology, and Freedom of Information, among other current aspects of librarianship in public and academic libraries. I am grateful for all the help and encouragement I received along the way, especially from my Burnaby Public Library coworkers and my family, who urged me to apply again for the Picard Award. I hope more Indigenous, Black and People of Colour apply to the Library School and work in libraries. I am happy to work in a professional field that strives for lifelong learning, democracy, and inclusiveness. Thank you very much for this generous award.

-Maité Mayeta Cumba

It is an incredible honour to have been selected as a recipient of the Picard Trust Award. Burnaby has been my home since I moved to Canada from Japan in 2007 with my daughter. Over the years, the BPL has been a place providing not only access to books but also offering a variety of classes and workshops that helped me adapt to the new environment and grow both personally and professionally. Burnaby is a city that values diversity, equity and inclusion, and I am proud of being its resident. By using my education and training in Library Science, I would like to assist and support others as well as to make a positive impact in this diverse community, which I believe is the way of expressing my gratitude for what I have received.

-Nobu Kawaguchi

Congratulations to Maité and Nobu, and we’re wishing you the best as you complete your programs!