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May 5

Volunteer with eBlackChampaign-Urbana!

Posted on Wednesday, May 5, 2010 in Uncategorized

Help make eBlackCU a collaborative project and volunteer! There are a ton of things to do to make this project better and to help it reach more people. Below are a list of current opportunities:

This list is organized around four types of work: digitization, web development, outreach/marketing, and research:

1) Digitization
a) We have identified a TON of material we haven’t had the time to digitize and get online. If you could dedicate some time to learning how to digitize, how to manage digital files, and how to get them online with proper metadata, this is for you! No prior skills necessary! Estimated time commitment: 3 hours minimum, up to 15 hours (or more)
b) We will also be holding “mass digitization” get-togethers this summer in which we will converge on area archives and as a community help them get their material online and accessible! E-mail us if you want to be informed when these events will take place. Food and drinks after the event will be provided. Estimated time commitment: 5 hours.
c) Community Memory Boxes – We plan to place community memory boxes at a small number of sites in historically African-American institutions in Champaign-Urbana to encourage community members to deposit clippings, announcements, flyers, church programs or other ephemeral, but extremely important, documentation of African-American history as it happens! We need volunteers to help us check the boxes, process the donations, digitize them, and get the word out about the boxes! Estimated time commitment: 5 hours minimum, spread across multiple days…

2) Web Development
a) Metadata – we need to improve our metadata for the eBlackCU digital library. Spend some time learning what is in the library and help us improve access by adding better subject descriptions! Estimated time commitment: 1-10 hours (or more)
b) Design – Help us improve the eBlackCU design! Spend some time looking through the site to find ways to improve it and then implement the changes if you have the tech skills (or send us your comments if you don’t)! Estimated time: 1-10 hours (or more)
c) Installins apps – We would like to install a number of apps and programs on the eBlackCU site that will allow us to geocode data, place interactive time-lines into the site, and more! If you are interested in web development and have some experience this would be perfect for you! Estimated time: 5-15 hours

3) Outreach/Marketing
a) Opening up the University Project – We are publishing a print/digital anthology of research about African-American issues in Champaign-Urbana produced by the University of Illinois in the spirit of trying to make the University more transparent and approachable. We need help e-mailing potential contributors and working with them to get their submissions ready for publication. Interested in publishing or editing? This project is for you! Estimated time commitment: 5 hours.
b) Facebook – We are trying to develop a version of eBlackCU in Facebook! Help us spread the word through the social networks and help us build this collaborative Facebook page. Estimated time commitment: 2-3 hours.
c) Working with teens – We will have six high school interns this summer and will need some help teaching and providing one-on-one support. If you have an interest in cyber-navigating or teaching technology this is right up your alley. Estimated time commitment: Minimum 10 hours commitment.
d) Digitization workshops – We want to help community organizations get their material online! Lend a hand and help us organize and carry-out digitization workshops to support capacity building in community organizations. Estimated Time Commitment: 3-20 hours.

4) Research:
a) Visit area archives in Champaign-Urbana and inventory material that documents African-American history and culture in our community. A list of sources has been prepared and volunteers would be asked to spend a few hours looking at an archives record group to see what is of interest in terms of local African-American. A great way to learn about archives and to do some original research! No prior experience is necessary. Go alone or with a friend! Estimated time commitment: Between 2 hours to 10 hours depending on the size of the archives chosen.
b) Check newspaper microfilm rolls and city directories for data about African-American history in Champaign-Urbana around specific themes. Can be done at the Champaign County Historical Archives, History Library or online, in the case of the Digitized Urbana Courier – ( Estimated time commitment: 1-5 hours depending on research needed.
c) Have an interest in digital exhibits? Take the initiative to research and produce a digital exhibit using the Omeka Content Management System! We can get you started with the tech and orient you in the research and then let you take the initiative and develop an exhibit around your interests. Estimated time commitment: 10-20 hours minimum.

Plus – your suggestion!