May 24, 2017 | Brackett Library |
Harding’s Brackett Library is home to more than 20,000 digitized archives — photos, scrapbooks, yearbooks, etc. — that take up more than one and a half terabytes, which is equal to over one and a half million megabytes, of storage. Hannah Wood, archives and special collections librarian, manages the thousands of archives that come from all areas of campus. Wood recently received the digital archives specialist certification from the Society of American Archivists.
The certification came after Wood completed online webinars and in-person courses and passed a comprehensive exam. Wood said the courses and exams have prepared her to maintain the archives and special collections mission: to preserve and make accessible items related to Harding history.
“Part of my job is to make sure these items are protected yet still available for researchers,” Wood said. “I consider myself to be relatively tech savvy, at least for the common person, but I knew I needed more knowledge of the intricacies of the digital realm, particularly as it interacts with the archival realm, if I was to fully live out the mission of the archives.”
Keith Cronk, vice president of information systems and technology, said Wood’s role as the University’s archivist is important to making sure the University’s records, stories and documents are stored for future members of the Harding community to access.
“Hannah has always demonstrated a passion for properly maintaining Harding’s history,” Cronk said. “The certification was hard work and is not undertaken by many. Hannah took the initiative and time to attain this certification, which shows her dedication to being a top-rated archivist.”
Wood said the nine courses for the certification focused on four tiers of study. She added that the certification has been a source of professional development that will make archives a more accessible piece of documenting Harding’s history.
“For me, the DAS certification process helped fill a gap in my education and experience,” Wood said. “It has provided tools and knowledge about digital stewardship, preservation and presentation that help me fulfill the mission of the archives. I am a better archivist for having participated in this process.”
Wood said the certification will greatly benefit projects that she is developing and continuing archival work on. Over the summer, Wood will be working on populating Scholar Works, the library’s new, still-developing online platform for research, creative works and archives at Harding. In addition, Wood will be working on including plaques from the First Ladies Garden into Harding Remembers, an interactive, searchable database showcasing the various memorials on campus.