Pryor Center and Arkansas Story Bus Gain Momentum Thanks to Recent Gifts

   

Pryor Center and Arkansas Story Bus Gain Momentum Thanks to Recent Gifts
8/23/2013 2:38:23 PM

The Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History is benefiting from recent gifts, which will help them continue to collect, preserve and share Arkansas history with scholars, students and the public. The Pryor Center already has a proven model for success using EAST at Northwest Arkansas High School to conduct oral history projects.

Pryor Center and Arkansas Story Bust Gain Momentum Thanks to Recent Giftshttp://

(Fayetteville, Ark.) The David and Barbara Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History is benefitting from recent gifts, which will help them continue to collect, preserve and share Arkansas history with scholars, students and the public. These contributions come at an ideal time as the center prepares to move to a new space on the historic Fayetteville square and launch an innovative new mobile story unit, the Arkansas Story Bus.

The Arkansas Story Bus will be a national first — a video- and audio-equipped, traveling, oral history studio dedicated to preserving the history of a single state and its people. Local students will be utilized to help conduct the Story Bus interviews, and residents across the state will have access to the high-definition equipment in the bus to record their own stories when it visits their town.

The Pryor Center already has a proven model for success using Northwest Arkansas high school students in the Environmental and Spatial Technology, or EAST, Initiative to conduct oral history projects. In fact, students at four area high schools have already recorded 40 interviews with military veterans, scanned photos, collected biographical data, transcribed the interviews and created presentations about their projects. Their work was then donated to the Pryor Center’s archive.

“Thanks to these contributions, we’ll be able to expand our mobile interviewing program across the state and pursue similar educational projects. In particular, by virtue of its self-contained technology, the mobile unit will make it possible to conduct oral history training in high schools where students wouldn’t otherwise have access to the needed equipment,” said Randy Dixon, director of the Pryor Center. “These students will get to participate in the entire process of recording oral history, from helping to research  historical context of an event or experience to acting as interviewers and transcribers.” In the end, the students will have the opportunity to donate the materials to the Pryor Center and their local historical societies and libraries.

This unique program will not only provide an invaluable learning opportunity for students, it will also further the Pryor Center’s mission of collecting and preserving the history of Arkansas for generations to come.  And it wouldn’t be possible without philanthropic contributions from alumni, friends and corporations.

Original story can be found here.

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