Depot's history enters cyberspace
By Cpl. Matt Preston
| | August 23, 2002
MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT/EASTERN RECRUITING REGION, PARRIS ISLAND, S.C. -- --
The idea of museums being nothing but old artifacts collecting dust is being changed by the Parris Island Museum, with the help of some graduate students from Connecticut.
The Parris Island Museum, in conjunction with Quinnipiac University, launched a new website to bring a virtual representation of the history stored inside the museum to the World Wide Web Tuesday.
The website will give those who ordinarily wouldn't have a chance to visit the museum to get a glimpse into Parris Island's history.
"We're one of the best kept secrets of the military museums' world," said Dr. Steven Wise, curator of the museum. "This website will give us greater exposure. It allows us to show off some of our artifacts, photos and artwork."
The website itself consists of four major areas, each highlighting an era of Parris Island's or the Marine Corps' history.
Visitors to the virtual museum can get a taste of what Marine Corps training was like during the Vietnam War, see the types of cannonballs used during the American Revolution around Beaufort or view Japanese machine guns captured during World War II.
The website was primarily built by the e-Media graduate students of Quinnipiac University as a real-world application of the skills they've learned. One of the challenges that the students faced was the sheer distance from the school to Parris Island.
It's a common difficulty that the students will face in the real world.
"In the interactive development business, often clients are miles away from the development firm's offices," said Scott B. Barnett, Assistant Professor of Communications and e-Media director at Quinnipiac University.
The Parris Island Museum proved to be an ideal candidate for the students.
"The projects we seek must have understanding clients, ones who realize these are graduate students," said Barnett. "Thus the client must be willing to work with them in a learning and mentoring environment. The team at Parris Island was always cognizant of this fact and provided excellent input and feedback that improved the team's work. The project proceeded in a very business-like manner."
Quinnipiac University's e-Media program has also developed projects for professional and amateur sports teams, Connecticut Public Television and the State of Connecticut.
The museum website can be found at http://www.mcrdpi.usmc.mil/units/museum/index.htm.