Salisbury University students on campus

COVID-19 Collection

Unfortunately, pandemics are part of world history. In 2009, the world fought the H1N1 virus; in 1968, the H3N2 virus; in 1957, the H2N2 virus, and the worst in recent history, the 1918 Influenza pandemic. Today, COVID-19 is added to that list.

The Salisbury University Libraries have established a COVID-19 archive as part of the SU University Archives. We encourage you to keep a journal documenting your experiences and recording your thoughts and responses, fears, and adaptations you are making socially, academically, financially, etc. Not only can this project help us document history, it could be therapeutic to help you de-stress during this time of uncertainty. Feel free to include whatever you think is relevant to your experience. You could even add tweets, photographs, drawings, short videos, etc. as well. Other forms of documentation, such as audio recordings, photo essays, and interviews with family members and friends are also acceptable materials.

This is not an idea original to us — we saw several other archives and historical societies doing this. But future students and scholars will thank you for your help in preserving what (we hope) can never be recreated.

If you have any questions, please contact University Archivist, Jennifer Piegols.

How to Contribute

No matter what kind of materials you submit or how many times you submit, please start by submitting this online donation form. Only one donation form is needed per person. You may submit additional materials, but you do not need a new form each time.

Physical Items

Physical journals and items can be dropped off at the Nabb Center on the 4th floor of the GAC after SU has fully reopened or can be mailed to:

COVID-19 Archive
Nabb Research Center/GAC
Salisbury University
1101 Camden Avenue
Salisbury, MD 21801

Electronic Items

Digital journals and materials can be uploaded as part of your donation form. After submitting your donation form, you will also receive a link by email that will allow to upload further materials at a later time if needed. If you prefer not to upload your materials through this link, you can also email digital materials to Jennifer Piegols, our University Archivist, with the subject line: University Archives COVID-19 journal.


Please note that these materials will eventually become publicly available through the archives. Do not include any private personal information such as your street address, phone number, student id number, or other personally identifiable information. Your name is encouraged, but not required. If you would like your materials to remain completely anonymous, you may indicate that in your donation form. Your name is required in the form for administrative purposes, but your name will never be released to researchers if you select anonymity.

In an effort to keep medical information of others private, as per HIPPA guidelines, please refrain from including any specific medical information about others, including family members, friends, other SU students, etc. If any such information is included in your submission, please inform Jennifer Piegols, the University Archivist, upon your submission of materials.

Restricting Your Materials

If you would like to temporarily restrict your materials from public view, you may specify a reasonable amount of time for your journal/materials to remain private, up to 10 years, in your donation form.

Please note an embargo is different from anonymity. If you choose an embargo, your materials will remain locked from public viewing for the indicated amount of time. Once the embargo is over, your name will be associated with your donated materials and your materials will be open to researchers. If you wish to remain anonymous after the embargo period, please select the anonymity choice in your donation form.

If you have questions about restrictions on your materials, please contact Jennifer Piegols.

Possible Writing Topics

  • Name, academic year, areas of study, workplaces, other campus involvement
  • What did you do over spring break? Did your plans change?
  • How did you hear that you were being encouraged not to return to campus? What was your immediate reaction?
  • Share your experiences with online learning. Has it been a challenge? 
  • Are you able to work from home? How has the transition affected you and your family?
  • Where are you physically located now? What is it like being here?
  • How has your routine changed?
  • How have you discussed these events with your family, friends, professors?
  • How do you keep in touch with friends? Has anything changed?
  • What are your news sources? How do you find out about what’s happening at Salisbury University?
  • How is the coronavirus impacting your life?
  • How are you navigating work and family needs? 
  • Has your place of work reduced hours, or been forced to close? Are you receiving any assistance?
  • What steps have you or your family taken to prevent the virus’s spread?
  • What did you do today or what do you plan to do tomorrow?
  • Describe the space you are writing in. 
  • What are some things stressing you out or making you excited?
  • Write about your dreams, your plans, your fears, your insecurities.
  • Who are you?
  • How is the virus impacting your life?
  • How have you prepared for the pandemic?
  • What are your biggest concerns right now?
  • Are you caring for children on an extended break?
  • How are the people around you responding?
  • What business or industry do you work in? 
  • What is your job?
  • Have you had to cancel an event or trip?
  • Are you able to stay isolated at home?
  • Do you know anyone who has or has had the virus? (If so, please do not include any personally identifiable information when writing about this topic. For example, names, their relationship to you. We want to protect their medical privacy.)
  • If you could offer some advice to someone in the future about this time, what might it be?
  • What do you love about Salisbury University? What might you change about our school?
  • What do you miss most about campus? What do you miss the least?