October 02, 2014, BY Kathryn Kopchik

The Griot Tree photograph is used by permission of the artist Bobbie Crews.

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The Bucknell Griot Digital Storytelling Project, which begins Oct. 2, is gathering oral narratives created by members of the Bucknell community in order to build a historical record. 

"The project enables the institute to fulfill its function as a griot for Bucknell," according to Carmen Gillespie, director of the Griot Institute for Africana Studies at Bucknell.

"It aims to encourage creative engagement with the art and utility of oral storytelling, and to showcase the experiential range of our community in an effort to define who we are at this moment in our collective history," she said.

The finished narratives are featured on the Griot Institute Storytelling Project webpage and become part of Bucknell's storytelling archive, a collection of creative explorations of this community — a dynamic, digital griot.

Begun a year ago, the narratives includes stories from Bucknell administrators, alumni and students who offer their stories of personal discovery and development.

Persons interested in contributing their own story or for information on how to use the oral narratives for class projects can contact Presidential Fellow Heather Hennigan at hch004@bucknell.edu or email griot@bucknell.edu.