A community engagement program launched in the spring of 2014 at Wright State University’s Veteran & Military Center (WSVMC) will continue and expand, thanks to a $20,000 grant from Ohio Humanities. Veterans’ Voices is a combined effort by WSVMC and local NPR affiliate WYSO.
Wright State Veteran students record video interviews of veterans ranging from WWII to the current conflicts for the project. Student veterans participating in Veteran’s Voices received additional training and advice in oral history interviewing with an Ohio Humanities sponsored event and attended a lecture by NPR Veterans Correspondent David ‘Quil’ Lawrence on June 10 at Wright State. Lawrence shared his experiences as NPR Bureau Chief in both Kabul and Baghdad.
The focus of the upcoming phase of Veterans’ Voices is post-9/11 veterans. According to WSVMC, it is important to capture the memories of the soldiers who have returned home over the last 14 years and the stories of their experiences are vital to preserving the history of these wars. The Ohio Humanities grant is supporting two fellowships at WYSO. Using oral histories recorded during the project, fellows will produce eight stories for air on the radio station, as well as provide support for additional oral history recordings throughout 2015. WSVMC director Seth Gordon says the grant from Ohio Humanities allows the organization, “to serve our community by empowering our student veterans to tell each other’s stories.”
These interviews will be stored in both the Library of Congress and Wright State University archives.
More information about the WSVMC and Veterans’ Voices can be found online at www.wright.edu/vmc.