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Donating Your Materials to the Carnegie Mellon University Archives

Guide to donating materials to the University Archives.

Faculty and Affiliates

The University Archives house numerous papers from faculty and affiliates, including staff and individuals closely related to Carnegie Mellon.

We selectively collect materials from faculty and affiliates to document university life and culture as well as the societal impact of research over time. These materials document individuals’ personal and professional lives and illustrate

  • significant discoveries, innovations, projects or research
  • committee responsibilities or other service to the university
  • roles within schools, groups or programs
  • networks and communities that influence and enable research
  • teaching and lecture activities
  • university policy and culture

 

We are committed to preserving collections reflective of the diverse experience and expertise at CMU.


What We Collect

  • autobiographical and biographical information including vitae, bios, bibliographies, clippings, and chronologies.
  • minutes and proceedings
  • policies and procedures
  • reports
  • proposals
  • subject files and collected resources
  • personal and professional correspondence, memos and emails
  • consulting files
  • professional organization files
  • speeches, talks and presentations
  • lab notebooks
  • research notes
  • research material including hardware, software, code and data
  • research proposals
  • drafts, manuscripts and reviews
  • unpublished writings
  • course materials including syllabi, outlines, lectures notes, slides, reading lists, and ungraded exams
  • diaries and journals
  • scrapbooks
  • audio and video recordings
  • photographs and slides
  • websites
  • artifacts and memorabilia
  • oral histories

 

Preparing Your Records

 

Before sending your records, please contact us for a consultation with an archivist. We will answer your questions and explain the donation process in more detail.


Create an Inventory

First, create an approximate inventory of the materials. Depending on the size and format of the donation, this can take the form of a list of boxes or files, or a detailed account of every item. This inventory forms the initial metadata for the collection and serves as a guide for archivists as we begin the process of preserving your donation.

 

Analog Material

Pack them in sturdy boxes or containers (banker-sized boxes are preferred). Label each box with a rough account of the contents (eg. VHS Videotapes of Buggy) and number each box sequentially. As you are packing the material, try to retain the original order as much as possible.

 

An archivist will work with you to move or ship the boxes to our facility. If you need assistance packing the materials, the University Archives can provide support in most cases.

 

Digital Material

We have several methods available for digital material. We accept materials via storage device or electronic delivery.

 

Storage Device

We prefer USB flash drive or hard drive, but also accept devices such as CD and DVD as well as floppy disks and other obsolete media. We recommend using a storage device if donating large quantities or media files including photographs and video.

 

Electronic Delivery

We accept files via email and BOX. If using BOX, we will create the folder for you.