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Junior Fellows Wrapping Up Digital Preservation Internship Projects

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The following is a guest post by Gloria Gonzalez, a 2011 Junior Fellow working with NDIIPP.

As August begins, our time as NDIIPP Junior Fellows is coming to an end. The four of us—Victoria Priester, Kristin Snawder, Cristina Bilmanis and myself—were introduced on The Signal at the beginning of June. Since then, we’ve worked on an assortment of projects related to NDIIPP, and presented a selection of our work in a culminating Junior Fellows Exhibit.

From L, Gloria Gonzalez, Kristin Snawder, Bill LeFurgy, Christina Bilmanis, Victoria Preister, by wlef70, on Flickr
From L, Gloria Gonzalez, Kristin Snawder, Bill LeFurgy, Cristina Bilmanis, Victoria Preister, by wlef70, on Flickr

Victoria completed two large projects this summer: an analysis of web technology trends found on congressional websites and the North Carolina Outreach and Education Project. Victoria’s interest in political science motivated her to use the Library’s Web Archive to analyze the instances of web technology (like email, online donations, and social media outlets) found on congressional websites from 2002-2008. She presented her findings at the 2011 NDIIPP Partners Meeting in July.

For her NC outreach project, she developed an email and phone call campaign to promote NDIIPP’s personal archiving resources, and inform the group about the program’s Twitter and Facebook pages. Victoria explains, “the most rewarding part of my internship came about from the outreach project because I had the opportunity to express NDIIPP’s hopes for digital preservation collaboration by talking to librarians, historians and genealogists in the state about their current digital preservation projects and aspirations.” She finished the project by writing Carolina on My Mind: Marketing Digital Preservation for The Signal explaining the project and its outcomes.

During our internship, we all had the opportunity to participate in the partners meeting. The meeting gave us the chance to observe current work in the field of digital preservation and was a learning experience for all of us. Our thoughts about the meeting are expressed by Kristin who said, “the meeting was a highlight of my time here. It was nice to meet professionals involved with the progression of digital preservation. Working with them and being a part of the meeting’s conversation made us feel like part of the community.”

Kristin worked on a range of projects—from analysis to video production. After performing an analysis of digital preservation policies, she presented her findings to the Digital Preservation Working Group and wrote a blog post for the signal entitled, Facing Off with Digital Preservation. Kristin also created a Recollection view, “Digital Stewardship and Preservation Tools and Services,” which will soon be embedded into the website and replace the existing list of tools. She expressed her excitement about upgrading the list by saying, “the views I made will make it easier for people to come to the site and determine which tool is best for them. I view it as a sort of footprint I’m leaving behind at the library.” Other projects Kristin completed include the Junior Fellow Exhibit Video and a review of preservation policy documents for potential use within the Library that we worked on together.

Design for The Signal Bookmark, by Christina Bilmanis, Public DomainCristina’s projects were well suited for her fine arts and graphic design background. The first project Cristina completed was a banner for the Web Archiving website. She found this project to be particularly exciting. She explained, “creating the Web Archiving banner was really fun because I was able to dive in and explore the collections in the process of searching for images to use for the banner.” Among Cristina’s other designs are a table tent used to promote the National Digital Stewardship Alliance during the Partner’s Meeting. Another important project for her was designing a bookmark to promote The Signal at the National Book Festival in September.

When asked about her experience as an NDIIPP Junior Fellow Cristina said, “my time here has been a huge step in the development of my career. Getting to do professional design for a federal institution and seeing my work implemented on the website and promotional items was extremely fulfilling.”

I also found my time here at the Library to be very rewarding. My work here allowed me to develop my specific interests within librarianship and explore aspects of digital preservation that were previously unknown to me. Working with NDIIPP and the NDSA caused me to realize how far reaching the issues of digital preservation are—affecting everything from personal archiving to scientific data and geospatial humanities.

Bill LeFurgy, our supervisor, was very pleased with our work.  “All of you did a fantastic job helping us with important projects,” he said.  “We also appreciate your boundless enthusiasm–it’s a beautiful thing!”

Leaving the Library will be tough for all of us because we have enjoyed our summer so much, but the departing words of Dr. Deanna B. Marcum, Associate Librarian for Library Services, were helpful in putting our experience into perspective. She said, “even though you’re time as Junior Fellows has ended and you’ll be leaving the library, the work you’ve done and what you’ve left behind will always be here and regardless of your future career, the library has imprinted upon you the understanding how important libraries are to schools, communities and our nation.”

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