The Sheridan Libraries’ Ferdinand Hamburger University Archives has launched a project to encourage Johns Hopkins University students, staff, and faculty to preserve their personal experiences during the coronavirus pandemic and contribute them to the University Archives.

The Archives is interested in your stories about the shift to remote instruction and learning, studying and working from home, working at off-campus jobs (in the service industry, grocery stores, etc.), the impact of closing residence halls and other campus services, the ways you and your friends and family are staying in touch during this period of social distancing and self-quarantine, and other topics.

How To Participate

A primary way for you to share your story is to complete our questionnaire. (If anonymity is a concern, participants have the option of submitting without providing a name.)

We are also soliciting donations of personal materials that serve as a record of your experience during this time of unprecedented personal, professional, and educational upheaval. Some options for donation include:

  • Any journal writings you have created documenting your experiences
  • Recordings of voice memos, interviews, or Zoom hangouts with your family or friends (If you interview other people in the course of your documentation, we will also need their permission so that we can preserve and share the recordings with future researchers. We can provide guidance on this process.)
  • Social media posts
  • Any coursework or research projects you created in response to COVID-19
  • Photographs and/or videos of your daily life as shaped by the pandemic

Please be sure to comply with all applicable stay-at-home orders while self-documenting.

The Archives accepts almost all digital formats. To donate any materials or to ask any questions, please reach out to Jordon Steele, Hodson Curator of the University Archives, at jsteele@jhu.edu.

Submissions will not be available to the public immediately. However, after they are processed by University Archives staff, they will be publicly available in JScholarship, the university’s digital repository, and may be used in news stories, exhibitions, and other public venues.

newsletter cover with headline students sent home
Cover of the News-Letter
masked student using a hot glue gun
JHU student volunteer

Related Projects

If you are affiliated with the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, we encourage you to contact the Chesney Medical Archives to inquire about its efforts to document COVID-19 impact among that community.

If you are affiliated with the Peabody Institute, please visit the Peabody Institute Archives’ page for COVID-19 collecting efforts.

If you are a non-affiliate and a resident of Maryland, please contribute to the Maryland Historical Society’s “Collecting in Quarantine” initiative.