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Bridging the Gap Trainee – First month at LSHTM Archives

Hello! My name’s Manasseh and this is my first blog post as a Digital Archives Trainee for LSHTM Archives, since starting 6 weeks ago.

So, as part of The National Archives Bridging the Digital Gap programme I will be at LSHTM Archives for 15 months learning what it means to work in an archive. I will be helping the department initiate their digital preservation strategy and crucially really finding out what it means to be a Digital Archivist Assistant in this ever evolving world of Digital technologies.

I’ve come from a Arts and Heritage background with a degree in Humanities with History, only in the last year and a half I have been trained in software development with a placement at The National Archives. I am very excited to use my skills and experiences as a Digital archives trainee. So far it’s been a really interesting couple of weeks; I’ve attended a 3 day basecamp, meeting all the other 7 trainees as part of the Bridging the gap programme at The National Archives and had a tour of their amazing repositories. I’ve made a very dry Trench Cake for the Archives annual Great War Bake Off. This event was so much fun, (though I am currently working on perfecting a more edible cake) and I’ve also represented LSHTM Archives on History Day at Senate House, where I got to take in all the interesting Libraries, Archives and publishers in London and beyond.

Some of the topics I’ve covered so far in my modules have been Archive Management and Digital preservation, with an insight into how the Domesday book has been digitally preserved, considering it’s 900+ years lifespan. I’ve also been introduced to the LSHTM’s Archive service cataloguing system, Calm and the user’s gateway to the fascinating items in the catalogue through Calmview.

I’m really looking forward to what the next several months will bring as I’ll have the opportunity to visit my fellow trainees organisations at King’s College London, The Wellcome Collection and UCL Institute of Education as well as taking every opportunity to learn as much as I can at LSHTM’s Archives.

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