Students contribute to digitizing history. And see its effect on today.

 Faculty member Heather McKee Hurwitz collected this button that is now saved in CWRU’s digital Occupy Archive.

Ten years ago, the Occupy Movement was everywhere: culminating in hundreds of encampments and marches worldwide against income inequality. The cause promoted justice and reform, and continues to influence present-day demonstrations for societal change.

Case Western Reserve University faculty member Heather McKee Hurwitz was there, collecting interviews with Occupy organizers and participants, as well as literature, signs, art and ephemera—all now preserved in CWRU’s digital Occupy Archive.

As a Freedman Fellow at CWRU’s Freedman Center for Digital Scholarship, Hurwitz led a team of librarians and student researchers who scanned hundreds of items, created a searchable tagging system, and designed teaching tools and research guides to help students, teachers and the public use the archive.

“Throughout the digitization process, I learned about this mass movement that has contributed to the widespread advocacy for change today,” says psychology major and student researcher Jason Choi. “It taught me the importance of precision in archiving data as well as how to work efficiently as part of a research team.”

Lessons from the past, through the lens of the present, preparing students like you to lead the future. Beautiful. Powerful.