Story+ Project

Commemorating Duke: 100 Years


Overview: Be part of a once-in-a-lifetime event! Students tell the story of Duke University in the upcoming Duke Centennial exhibit. As part of the team in University Archives, the students will select 100 items that highlight the many stories that make up the campus and the community. Students will select materials from the Archives--this could be anything from top hats to student snapshots to historic filmsand then will write exhibit labels and design the layout of the exhibit. The exhibit will run for the entirety of 2024, and will be mounted in the Chappell Gallery, the large exhibition space directly inside the main doors to Perkins Library. Working with archivists, exhibits librarians, technologists, and others, students will be directly engaged in uniquely marking Duke’s first 100 years.

Six-Week Plan: The Story+ team will select and write exhibit labels for 100 items that represent Duke history. The team will also create introductory texts and create a plan for the physical and digital layout of the exhibit. At the end of the six weeks, students will have selected and written about most of the items intended for the exhibit, and have clear plans for how the exhibit will be mounted. Because only 50 items will be going on display at a time, students will also select which 50 are displayed during the first half of 2024, and which are displayed during the second half.

Key Words: archives, libraries, Duke history, public history, exhibits

Preferred skills for undergraduates:

  • Interest in or experience with historical research
  • Strong writing skills
  • Ability to collaborate with undergraduates, graduate students, and archives staff
  • Ability to think broadly about an overarching concept (100 years of Duke) and to hone in on specific items that best demonstrate the range and depth of significant events, achievements, and changes that make up our university history
  • Critical thinking about stories that have/haven’t been represented
  • Ideal for students interested in history/ public history, museum studies, cultural heritage institutions, and library science

Preferred skills for graduate student mentor:

  • Experience with historical and archival research
  • Interest in and/or experience with public history, cultural institutions, or experience working on physical and/or digital exhibits
  • Enjoys collaborating with students and staff, and comfortable with delegating work and giving feedback
  • Familiarity with the Rubenstein Library a bonus
Project Sponsor(s): 

Meg Brown, Head, Exhibition Services and the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation Exhibits Librarian, Duke University Libraries

Valerie Gillispie, University Archivist, Rubenstein Library

Ani Karagianis, Research Services Librarian for University Archives, Rubenstein Library


  • Archives
  • Duke Centennial
  • Exhibits
  • History
  • Libraries