Museum Grand Opening: May 17 from 9 – 11 a.m.

American Civil Rights Museum at Elon Island

As seen from the sea, the American Civil Rights Museum garden and Woolworth entrance located on Elon Island.

Graduate students in the iMedia program at Elon University have used the synthetic world of Second Life to create the American Civil Rights Museum — a virtual museum that looks at the civil rights movement in the United States.

Maria Rojas and Melissa Spencer, students in the Virtual Environments class explored issues of identity, memory and discrimination as they recreated parts of the newly opened International Civil Rights Center & Museum in Greensboro, North Carolina.

On Monday May 17 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., they will host a virtual open house to showcase the museum and its exhibits. The museum in Second Life is located on Elon Island at coordinates 45.119.28. They will also simultaneously give a talk about their work and give tours of the museum at Elon University in Powell 213.

The International Civil Rights Center & Museum, housed in the former Woolworth’s building on Elm Street, honors the Greensboro Four who sat at the segregated lunch counter on February 1, 1960 and started the sit-in movement that spread nationwide. The students used this museum’s exhibits as inspiration for their virtual museum.

The students’ work highlights the duality of African-American experience through exhibits that showcase the best and worst of the civil rights movement.

Virtual Environments, an elective in the iMedia graduate program, is taught by Dr. Michelle Ferrier (SL: Firenza Mavinelli) with assistance from Dr. Tony Crider (SL: Chaac Amarula).

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