Marywood Memories project tries a different angle

Autumn Granza, Editor-In-Chief

The “Marywood Memories” project, a Centennial project that launched last year, seems to have been forgotten.

The project, aimed at seeking alumni’s best memories at Marywood, has proven unsuccessful due to a lack of participants.

Dr. Kathleen Munley, professor of history, is surprised that alumni have not participated more. Munley and Leon John, associate director of alumni engagement, spearheaded the project last year.

“It may have been a lack of publicity,” said Munley. “We tried very hard to get good publicity.”

Some alumni memories have been recorded. These recordings were done at alumni events.

“We had alumni participation through events on and off campus,” said Ann Montoro Williams, director of alumni engagement. “Alumni were recorded during Reunion Weekend, at an alumni athletic event, a scholarship recognition dinner, and at a meeting of the board of the Marywood University Alumni Association.”

But, so far no one has called the phone number that has been set up for the project to record a memory.

“The direct one-on-one recording seems to be the most effective way to have our alumni participate. I believe the limited participation through the phone-in system is mainly due to the busy lives that we all lead,” said Williams.

Now, the Marywood Memories committee has decided to open the centennial project not only to alumni but also to faculty, administration, staff, students, and graduate students.

“The Centennial celebration is a celebration for the entire Marywood community,” said Williams. “I hope everyone…administrators, faculty, staff, and students…all make the time speak about their favorite memory. This will be the only Centennial Celebration for Marywood that we will see. It is history. Be proud to be part of that history.”

The project, which was supposed to end in the spring of 2014, has been extended to Dec. of 2014. The committee, which includes Munley, John, Williams, Sherry Frable, public relations coordinator; and Sara Woolsey, network support technician, hope to have more participants since the project has been expanded to the whole Marywood community.

“Some of the administration, faculty, and staff have been here a long time,” said Munley. “We thought they would have a very interesting perspective on [the project].”

The committee met on Thursday, Oct. 9, where they went over what procedures should be taken in continuing the project. Participants still have the option to call in or interviews can be set up so that the person’s memory can be recorded.

The project will still be an oral history project, meaning that the participant will be recorded. Participants are asked to identify themselves and explain changes they may have seen throughout the years at Marywood, people they remembered, or whatever memory of theirs they would like to share.

Committee members are still reaching out to alumni to participate and hope to record alumni at upcoming alumni events in the fall.

The goal is still to have the “Marywood Memories” project in the Learning Commons once the building is complete.

“We are hoping the project still has some life left in it,” said Munley.

“I always have faith in the Marywood community,” said Williams. “I don’t consider this an unsuccessful project now. Yes, we would like increased participation, but we have some memories recorded…from various decades and affinity groups. Their words are part of Marywood’s 100 years.”

The Marywood community is encouraged to participate in the “Marywood Memories” project. Participants can call in to record a memory at (570) 348-4207 or 1-800-338-4207 or set up an interview by contacting Dr. Kathleen Munley at [email protected]maryu.marywood.edu.