History 428: Adventures in Digital History

HIST 428: Changes to the Semester

Yesterday the University of Mary Washington announced that all courses for the rest of the Spring 2020 semester would be conducted online, and that all on-campus events, including commencement, would be cancelled. (Or rescheduled in a modified capacity.)

Changes to the End of the Semester

Like all of my peers in the Class of 2020, this news is hard to grapple with. While I am thankful that three out of my five courses are already online, and that changes to my remaining two courses will be minimal, I will be losing my extracurriculars, on-campus traditions, and soon, student employment.

I understand however, that I cannot control most of this situation. I will choose to be grateful for my health and the health of my loved ones, and for the things that remain unchanged. I still will be attending UMW as a graduate student starting in late July, but am sad that my last semester of undergrad has been cut short.

Scrapbook Group Plans Going Forward

Because classes will be conducted remotely, the scrapbooks group will have to make some modifications to our group contract and project plan going forward.

This past Friday, Piper, Mady, and I met in the Digital Archiving Lab one last time to transfer all of our files to thumb drives. We have a total of three thumb drives. I have all of the PNGs, which are now migrated to our WordPress, and Mady has two thumb drives of .tiffs. The .tiffs will be uploaded to a zip file on the website that audience members can download.

At this stage, we have met our scanning goal as stated in our contract. While we would have loved to scan more, we have plenty of room to make a great website by creating narratives on each page, and this is indicated on our new new new group contract. All of this can be done remotely.

Our group met today on Zoom to discuss changes to our contract. Thankfully, no drastic changes had to be made, as we have already finished the “in-person” segment of our work. The changes that did have to be made reflected the nature of meetings, the fact that we cannot make any more scans, and the fact that we will have to do some sort of alternate presentation for the end-of-year History Symposium.

From here on out, we plan to meet on Zoom or GroupMe one to two times a week to work on our project. My favorite thing about using Zoom is that we can change the background. During today’s meeting, I was in Lego Star Wars. There is also a lot of work, such as captioning uploaded photos, that can be done individually at home. I am so thankful to have such a great group of women to work with on this project. Everyone has been putting great effort into making a great website, and I am so appreciative of that.

I am confident that our final project will be great!

Final Thoughts

I am thankful for the memories that I have made during my time as an undergrad at UMW. So many amazing things have happened to me, and I am grateful for the opportunities that I have been presented with. I hope that everyone is able to stay safe and find some positivity during this uncertain time.

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