Pamela Mitchem and Dea Rice (Appalachian State University)
Appalachian State University is a regional comprehensive university serving over 17,000 students and employing close to 900 faculty. The Carol Grotnes Belk Library and Information Commons endeavors to cultivate an environment where people discover, create and share information that reflects the acquisition of 21st century knowledge and skills. We are active partners in advancing the University’s principles of sustainability, social justice, inclusion, and global citizenship. The library’s newly developed Digital Scholarship and Initiatives (DSI) team began serving the university on July 1, 2015. Our team is dedicated to fostering the creation, dissemination, and preservation of digital scholarship and digital objects.
One of our main initiatives is creating sustainable partnerships with local cultural heritage organizations to build digital collections related to the culture and history of southern Appalachia. Using Omeka, an open source content management software, we are helping our historical societies, museums, local libraries, and school alumni associations to create digital collections of their historical materials. We use Omeka content management software for Appalachian’s Special Collections materials as well. We also helped create the Digital Library of Southern Appalachia Web Portal to promote these collections. Some of our projects include:
Blowing Rock History Project—A collaborative project with Blowing Rock Historical Society and Blowing Rock Art & History Museum. DSI provided consultation and training on Omeka software and will be writing a collaborative grant to digitize Blowing Rock related materials.
Digital History Class–DSI worked with the history department to provide training to students on Omeka for their Digital History class. These students then created Omeka collections for three local cultural organizations. One of those organizations was Lincoln Heights Recreation Committee. Lincoln Heights is a large Rosenwald school for African Americans in Wilkesboro, NC. Open from 1924-68, Lincoln Heights educated and employed black southerners through the Jim Crow Era and the height of the 20th-century Civil Rights Movement.
Digital Watauga Project-We are collaborating to provide Omeka training and digitization support to the Digital Watauga project, which is funded by Library Services and Technology ACT (LSTA) to digitize historical documents and images donated by community members.
This presentation will present a case study of our collaborations and use of Omeka. We will discuss strategies for partnerships, the challenges and rewards to cultivating these important relationships, and lessons learned in the process. We will also discuss our training module for Omeka.
Pam Mitchem has been a professional archivist for 18 years, working in digitization and digital curation since 2000. She held positions as Preservation and Digital Projects Archivist, Interim University Archivist, and Special Assistant to the Dean of Libraries for Digital Initiatives. Mitchem earned an M.A. in Appalachian studies from Appalachian State University and an Ed.S. in leadership and higher education, also from Appalachian. She is a certified archivist (CA) with the Academy of Certified Archivists and is a Society of American Archivists certified digital archives specialist (DAS). She is at work on her post-masters certificate in data curation at UNC-Chapel Hill and now serves as the Coordinator of Digital Scholarship and Initiatives services at the Appalachian State University Libraries.
Dea Rice is the Digital Projects Librarian at Appalachian State University and has also served as Metadata Librarian and Catalog Librarian. She received her M.S. in Information Sciences from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Her research interests include social media, socially responsible subject analysis and cataloging, and the intersection of gender and technology. She is currently working on a post-graduate certificate in Data Curation from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.