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Oct. 22, 2009
Northwest has a new virtual museum for online visitors.
The Northwest Museums Web site, located at www.nwmissouri.edu/onlinemuseum , showcases Northwest's "diverse and vital present along with its rich, compelling past, which includes ties to such historic events as the 1936 Berlin Olympics and the world's first successful electronic and commercial computers," said Kim Todd, information systems user consultant and the Northwest Museums project team leader.
The project was initiated to provide a single venue for Northwest alumni, educators, historians, parents and students to explore.
"Since Northwest does not yet have a physical university museum where all campus exhibits can be housed in a central location," Todd said, "our goal was to create such a place in cyberspace."
The Northwest Museums Web site features two distinct online museums. The Northwest History portion features photographs, interactive maps, video and information about Northwest's evolution from a Normal School to a state university, offering visitors a glimpse into campus life and the contributions of Northwest faculty, staff and students. The Computing History portion emphasizes Northwest's technological development through the decades and highlights the life and contributions of computing pioneer and Northwest alumna Jean Jennings Bartik.
Todd said visitors may be surprised by what they learn about the Northwest campus and its students, faculty and staff after visiting the Web site.
"Northwest, which has hosted such famous visitors as First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt and President Harry S. Truman, was 'going green' long before the words became a popular catch-phrase," Todd said, referring to J.R. Brink, Northwest's first groundskeeper, who began planting 300 trees a year between 1917 and 1928.
The Northwest Museums Web site, which also offers information about the eight physical museums on campus, was a collaborative effort between Northwest's Department of Information Systems, the Center for Information Technology in Education, the Office of University Relations and B.D. Owens Library.
The Web site was produced using Northwest staff and students and received support from Mary Ann Lowary, former vice president for university relations; Dr. Roger Von Holzen, CITE director; Dr. Jon Rickman, vice president for information systems; and Jolaine Zweifel, CITE computer specialist. Other staff responsible for the site's development include Crystal Ward, information systems junior web master; Cathy Palmer, B.D. Owens Library archivist; Kris Bakko, CITE faculty support technical assistant/secretary; and Mallory Murray, marketing specialist. The student-led creative team, supervised by Zweifel, included Michael Mandrick, Diane Cudsworth, Sampath Kumar Kunta, Clayton Scott, Caleb Taylor, Alice Foreman, Jennifer Heishman, Grant Howard, Diraj Kumar Potlapally and Alisha Baker.
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
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