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Bearing Witness: COVID-19 Oral History and the Public Good


Project creators



William Horne
Postdoctoral Fellow
Villanova University



Alyssa Bowen
PhD Candidate
UNC at Chapel Hill



Samuel Finesurrey
Assistant Adjunct Professor
Guttman Community College


Fen Kennedy
Assistant Professor
University of Alabama

About the project

In partnership with The Hope Center at Temple and Active Minds, The Activist History Review is conducting an oral history project that collects faculty, student, and staff accounts of their experiences during the pandemic.

Studying the effects of COVID-19 at colleges and universities is crucial to understanding its implications for the future of education as well as the ways that our institutions can better support the complex communities on college campuses during future crises. 

The project aims to produce four key deliverables: 1) archival content, 2) several short public-facing videos organized around key themes, 3) a roundtable-style discussion with participants hosted by the Lepage Center, and 4) a scholarly article on key findings co-authored by the organizers of the project. Questions touch on the respondents’ experiences during the pandemic and Black Lives Matter protests during the spring and summer of 2020 as well as the ways institutions responded (or failed to respond) during the health crisis and social unrest.


The Albert Lepage Center for History in the Public Interest
St. Augustine Center, Room 410
Villanova University
Villanova, PA 19085

Media inquiries:

Please contact the Villanova University media relations department.