American Social History Project • Center for Media and Learning

May 2002

CUNY WIRED!: A CUNY New Media Conference That Rocked


Ioannis Stamos
Ioannis Stamos, Hunter College Computer Science, presents the Reconstruction of Photorealistic 3D Models in Urban Environment.

On the afternoon and evening of March 15, 2002 more than 150 new media enthusiasts gathered at the CUNY Graduate Center to share their passion, projects and points of view at CUNY WIRED! This inaugural conference, whose primary goal was to build a community of new media producers across the CUNY 19-campus system, highlighted the exceptional work that is being done on many of our campuses. Representing over a dozen CUNY colleges and a handful of other universities, participants transcended the boundaries of their academic disciplines to engage in a unique and exciting dialog as they viewed cutting edge new technology projects. The two panels and a dozen breakout area demonstrations displayed a broad range of new cross-disciplinary applications. The first panel presented science and humanities projects employing sophisticated 3-D visualization techniques. The second dealt with new media and communication, from robots, to sensory computer controls, to a virtual orchestra. The audience responded enthusiastically with questions and debate about representation in the digital age and the application of new technologies. Keynote speaker Demetri Terzopoulos of NYU’s Courant Institute then intrigued the audience with his discussion of artificial intelligence and the creation and application of artificial worlds in virtual environments.

CUNY WIRED! The aftermath

CUNY WIRED! demonstrations
In the bustling demonstration area, Fritz Umbach (seated left) of The Graduate Center's Center for Media and Learning, displays and discusses The September 11 Digital Archive. Gregg Morris, (standing center) of Hunter College's Film and Media Department discusses the online journal The Word with attendees.

The Graduate Center’s New Media Lab, run under the auspices of the Center for Media and Learning/American Social History Project sponsored the conference with the support of a CUNY faculty development grant and the office of Executive Vice Chancellor Louise Mirrer. We plan to continue these efforts to strengthen the position of new media at the University with subsequent conferences that will build upon the interest and enthusiasm that was evident at CUNY WIRED! The next conference will engage faculty and others in questions about teaching with technology — acknowledging the many innovative approaches, programs, and materials that are currently in many stages of development and use.

CUNY WIRED! The site and the network serves as a gateway to the many innovative programs, projects and Labs from across CUNY that appeared at this event. All of those who participated can be reached via email through the site (click CW network) that also links to other CUNY online projects. You can also see the recently uploaded photographs of the conference (click conference). We welcome all submissions of CUNY new media sites to the Network. Those interested may visit the New Media Lab, located on the X-level of the CUNY Graduate Center, to view any or all of the conference proceedings on tape. The New Media Lab has invited the public to visit our space and many have done so – especially some who are in the process of setting up labs on their campuses. We are committed to fostering a growing community of new media producers with CUNY WIRED! serving as the catalyst. In the coming year, we aim to build on the excitement of our great day of networking. We intend to cultivate ambitious faculty and student projects and new cross campus and cross disciplinary collaborations as all of us involved in CUNY WIRED! stay wired!

NEH Grant Awarded to The New Media Classroom

ASHP/CML’s premier teaching with technology program, The New Media Classroom (NMC), has been awarded a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant. Entitled Learning to Look: Visual Evidence and the U.S. Past in the New Media Classroom, the program will train history and humanities faculty from 10 college and university campuses (NMC Regional Centers) in the growing scholarly arena of using visual evidence to teach about the past. The 2-year grant includes the addition of two new Centers from the network of Historically Black Colleges and Universities: Dillard University (Louisiana) and Spelman College (Georgia) and partnerships with historical and cultural institutions.

The September 11th Digital Archive in New-York Historical Society Exhibit

A kiosk displaying The September 11th Digital Archive Web site has been included in an exhibit currently at the New-York Historical Society (N-YHS). The exhibit, co-sponsored by City Lore, is the third exhibition in N-YHS’s History Responds series and is titled MISSING: STREETSCAPE OF A CITY IN MOURNING. Visitors to the exhibit can browse The September 11th Digital Archive and submit stories to the site in a room set aside for contemplation. The New-York Historical Society is located at 2 West 77th Street at Central Park West and is open Tuesday-Sunday 10AM-5PM. The exhibit runs through June 9, 2002.

Media Attention for Two ASHP/CML Projects

Two ASHP/CML online projects that chronicle significant events in New York City’s history were recently featured on cable television channel New York 1. Read or watch these segments by clicking on the corresponding URLs:

The September 11 Digital Archive, a permanent online archive of materials related to the events of September 11th, 2001,


Virtual New York, which tells the city’s history through evocative primary documents and original essays, beginning with an online exhibit on disasters in NYC history,

Labor at the Crossroads Receives Grant

Labor at the Crossroads recently received a North Star grant to fund the continuation of its programming. Labor at the Crossroads produces television programs about working people and the issues that are important to them. Check the Web site for schedule and catalog information: or contact

Call for Applications

ASHP/CML will be offering two training institutes for high school humanities teachers this summer:

The New Media Classroom: New Approaches to History and Humanities Education

July 8-10, 2002
CUNY Graduate Center

This program will train secondary school teachers and administrators to integrate educational technology into classroom practice. Program work and learning objectives focus on history and humanities content, student learning, technology skills, standards, and curriculum development. Teachers will survey Web sites; use online software to improve writing; and create Web pages. Print an application at


Interdisciplinary Connections: Gaining a Deeper Understanding of US History and Culture

July 22-24, 2002
CUNY Graduate Center

This program will work with participants in intensive, hands-on workshops exploring social and cultural history and literature, interdisciplinary teaching, and inquiry-based pedagogy. Participants will work with ASHP’s award-winning curriculum resources to engage students in the learning process and build their literacy and critical thinking skills. Print an application at


What’s New on the ASHP/CML Web Site

ASHP’s US history gateway site, History Matters: The US Survey on the Web, now features a guide to help teachers and students use film as historical evidence. “Making Sense of Films” is available at:

In Memoriam

Adesimba Kumara Bashir, 1952-2002

Adesimba Kumara BashirOur long-time colleague and dear friend, Adesimba Bashir, died on May 7, 2002. Born in Manhattan, Ade (whom many of you may have known as Pat Brown-Height) grew up in the Bronx, graduating from Preston High School in 1970. She graduated from NYU in 1974 with a BS in Elementary Education and received an MS in Educational Reading from Lehman College in 1976. At the time of her death she was working on her Ph.D. in English Education at NYU. Ade was an extraordinary teacher and mentor. She started her teaching career working in a number of elementary schools in the Bronx, and moved on to LaGuardia Community College, where she became a full-time member of its English department in 1986. She recently joined the faculty of Audrey Cohen College on Staten Island. We at ASHP/CML are grateful for our longtime association with Ade, who helped define our Making Connections program in the late 1980s and, more recently, served as a faculty fellow, mentoring high school teachers in our program. Ade’s boundless energy, her commitment to democratic education, and her generosity of spirit were an inspiration to us all. She was an honest, straightforward, creative, and deeply insightful colleague whom we will remember forever…