Ivan Allen College-led Team Wins 2nd Place at VIP Innovation Video Competition

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The Community & Digital Archives VIP Team recently received 2nd place at the Georgia Tech Vertically Integrated Projects (VIP) Innovative Video Competition. The team is comprised of School of History and Sociology Assistant Professor Todd Michney, School of Literature, Media, and Communication Academic Professional Brad Rittenhouse, and Georgia Tech Library Digital Collections Archivist Wendy Hagenmaier

Their project centers around two goals: the continued creation of the Mayor Ivan Allen Digital Archive, and the planning and execution of a community archives outreach and digitization day event hosted by the Grove Park Foundation in the Grove Park neighborhood of Atlanta.

The Ivan Allen Digital Archive is a digital humanities project that collects the digitized mayoral records of Mayor Ivan Allen Jr. from 1962 to 1970. The archive collects material from one of the most historic decades in Atlanta’s history. It functions as the primary digital repository for the history of Mayor Allen’s role in the passage of the Civil Rights Act, the history of race relations in 1960s Atlanta, construction of the Atlanta Stadium, massive changes in desegregation, infrastructure, housing, and transportation overseen by Allen’s administration, and much more.

Originally digitized by a team of researchers and students with the support of the Digital Integrated Liberal Arts Center (DILAC) funded by the Mellon Foundation, this Omeka-based project continues to be developed as a pedagogical resource for use in the Writing and Communication Program at Georgia Tech.

Michney recently received the Award for Excellence in the Educational Use of Historical Records for the Mayor Ivan Allen Digital Archive at the seventeenth annual Georgia Historical Records Advisory Council (GHRAC) Archives Awards ceremony at the Georgia Archives.

Both the Mayor Ivan Allen Digital Archive and Grove Park digitization efforts brought together students from diverse disciplinary backgrounds to develop relationships with local communities, design archives that prioritize the wants and needs of these communities, architect and implement technical solutions that help communities discover and explore their histories, and help with the analysis of the archives and systems as they are assembled.

In VIP, teams of undergraduate students – from various years, disciplines and backgrounds – work with faculty and graduate students in their areas of scholarship and exploration. Undergraduate students earn academic credit for their work and have direct experience with the innovation process, while faculty and graduate students benefit from the extended efforts of their teams.

The Community & Digital Archives VIP Team was awarded $500 for receiving 2nd place in the Service & Learning Track.

HSOC and LMC are units of the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts.


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