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ViaNolaVie preserves vibrancy of local culture

July 10, 2017 12:00 PM
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Tulane University has partnered with 'NolaVie Magazine' to produce ViaNolaVie, a new archival website that fosters connections to New Orleans’ culture. The new project emerged from a 2015 redesign of MediaNOLA, a site that Tulane professor of communication Vicki Mayer founded in 2009 to record cultural heritage. (Photo by Paula Burch-Celentano)

 

Whether filming the march of Mardi Gras Indians or recounting the history of Mimi’s in the Marigny, Tulane students have created articles, podcasts, photography, essays and videos covering every corner of New Orleans’ vibrant culture for the new website ViaNolaVie. Produced by a partnership between lifestyle magazine NolaVie and the university, the unique platform archives a variety of content provided by journalists, Tulane students and community partners. The website aims to record the city’s cultural heritage and make it accessible to the local community.

The new project emerged from a 2015 redesign of MediaNOLA, a site that Tulane professor of communication Vicki Mayer founded in 2009 to record cultural heritage.

“We at Tulane have been archiving students’ writing and research about New Orleans and the surrounding region for about 10 years,” said Mayer, cofounder of ViaNolaVie.

“We at Tulane have been archiving students’ writing and research about New Orleans for about 10 years.”

— Vicki Mayer, cofounder of ViaNolaVie

NolaVie was looking to renovate their site, so we joined forces about 18 months ago and went through a community design process. We realized that we both had very similar aims — to uplift community voices,” she said.

Mayer noted that the new website grants more opportunities for students.

“They get a lot of pride out of authorship and being media creators, not just media consumers. They develop digital portfolios within the site that they can share with employers who want to see finished work,” she said.

Four classes and three independent studies, including courses in communication, history and social innovation and social entrepreneurship, have also used the new platform as a showcase for student projects.

“The interdisciplinary nature of the students’ writing really enhances the final product. Next semester, we’ll be working with a design class at the Tulane School of Professional Advancement,” she said.

The full ViaNolaVie website will launch this August.

Like this article? Keep reading: MediaNOLA goes mobile