This semester has definitely been an unconventional one. I started this semester on an airplane in the middle of the Ocean traveling back from a winter faculty-led study abroad. While that experience was wonderful the transition to being back in school was a difficult one. However, I managed to make it through the first month and finally felt ready to take on the semester. I was really excited about this course Adventures in Digital History because it seemed really interesting and I was really excited to create a group project.
In the weeks leading up to spring break my group, the James Farmer at Mary Washington group, finalized our contract. In this contract, we had decided what each person’s role was going to be. My role was going to be to collect, digitize, and create an exhibit around the awards that James Farmer received while he was a visiting professor at Mary Washington. My plan was to start this process the week after spring break. While I managed to start the process I quickly realized that it was going to be that I was not going to be able to finish because in-person classes were canceled until the beginning of April and then canceled for the rest of the semester. This resulted in major changes to my part of the project, Kim’s role in conducting the Oral Histories, and the software that my group planned on using at school. With all these challenges towards the end of March, my group still managed to come together and create a project that I believe is better than what we originally envisioned. For the remainder of this blog post, I am going to defend my group’s project as contracted.
When looking at our mission statement, I firmly believe that we met our main goal which was to highlight James Farmer’s educational legacy at the University of Mary Washington through the gathering of various classroom-related materials related to his years. If you were to go to our website and look under Browse Collections and then look at Dr. Farmer in the Classroom, you would see our classroom-related materials. Another part of our contract that my group successfully completed was we conducted oral histories that can be found under our Oral Histories collection. In addition to that Katia still managed to transcribe and caption video materials of Dr. Farmer lecturing that we received from Special Collections and University Archives. These items can be found in our Lectures collection. Another part of the project that we managed to do was to compile other projects UMW students created on Dr. Farmer. These items are housed in our Additional Resources collection.
By having these collections we were able to create three different exhibits that are designed to capture the attention and educate former, current, and future UMW students about the importance of Farmer to our campus and school legacy. The exhibit on Farmer in the Classroom specifically focuses on Dr. Farmer’s importance to our campus. In addition, the Farmer Timeline: The Mary Washington Years also contributes to this effort as well. The legacy aspect of Dr. Farmer comes into play when looking at the exhibit space titled Farmer’s Legacy at UMW.
Based on all this information I firmly believe that we met our project goals. For more information about our website and how to navigate it click on the image below to be taken to our presentation video that highlights our project. I hope that this project will serve our campus community for a long time and will remind our campus community of the important role Dr. Farmer played during his years at Mary Washington College.