Skip to Main Content

Donating Your Materials to the Carnegie Mellon University Archives

What we collect from CMU Students and Student Organizations

The University Archives is home to records, artifacts, and memorabilia that capture the student experience at Carnegie Mellon. We collect materials related to student organizations, student senate, dorm life, and student life programs. These materials are the cornerstone of the University Archives, providing rich insight into campus life as well as contemporary social, cultural, and political circumstances.

We are committed to preserving collections reflective of the diverse student experience at CMU, including LGBTQ+ and BIPOC communities, students with disabilities, and women.

What We Collect

  • student organization constitutions and by-laws
  • student newsletters, journals, newspapers, zines, and publications
  • student yearbooks (for the Thistle Yearbook, only those after 2010)
  • reports by and/or about student life at CMU
  • student senate materials
  • event programs
  • promotional material like posters and fliers
  • scrapbooks
  • websites and social media
  • audio and video recordings
  • photographs and slides
  • oral histories


Preparing Your Records


Before sending your records, please contact us. We will answer your questions and explain the donation process in more detail.

Create an Inventory

If you are able to create an inventory for the materials, that's ideal, but not neseccary. 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 will help us create a detailed description for the collection, which will serve as a guide 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. 

Storage Device

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

Electronic Delivery

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