Share your experience of the pandemic with University Archives

University Archivist JOSH SCHNEIDER is inviting members of the university community to share their experiences with the coronavirus pandemic on campus, at home or elsewhere as part of the COVID-19 Community Archiving Project.

Josh Schneider
Josh Schneider (Courtesy Stanford Libraries)

The resulting collective records will support current and future students, faculty and others who will want to understand how the COVID-19 pandemic affected the Stanford community. Schneider suggests that people consider keeping a video diary or written log of their thoughts, experiences and feelings.

Schneider says University Archives has already received a wide range of submissions, including journal entries, photographs, poetry and creative art projects. Staff members are following up with each person who submits materials to ensure that the submissions can be shared to support teaching and learning at Stanford.

All submissions will be arranged and described by staff of Stanford Libraries’ Department of Special Collections & University Archives and added to a dedicated collection for this project that can be accessed in Green Library. In addition, all digital content will be added to the Stanford Digital Repository, where it will be preserved and made broadly accessible online so that everyone can learn more about the experiences and resilience of the Stanford community during this time.

In a library post, Schneider writes, “We welcome all contributions and are especially interested in hearing from first-generation/low-income students, international students and graduate students and others still living on or near the Stanford campus.”

Send files (diaries, videos, images, email, creative projects, etc.), questions about this initiative or suggestions to [email protected].

University Archives also has developed a questionnaire for community members to share their experiences: Share your experience of COVID-19 with the Stanford Archives. So far, 125 people have participated.

In addition to collecting materials from the university community and the questionnaire, University Archives is also capturing Stanford websites and social media that describe and illustrate the impact of COVID-19 and seeking records of administrative decision-making.

Schneider says that additional ideas under consideration are a community oral history project in collaboration with Stanford Historical Society’s Oral History Program and a longer-term project to more broadly document the effects of the virus.

Read more on the Stanford Libraries website.