February 19, 2019 – “Momentous Changes”

Hello, everyone!

For the most part, I usually keep these entries to record my experiences at archives. Occasionally, when major events such as hurricanes interfere with my normal routine, I do bring them to light. While my normal routines did not experience any interruptions today, a major event did happen today and the repercussions of which shape the future of the University of Central Florida.

University of Central Florida President Dale Whittaker announced he offered his resignation to the Board of Trustees approximately six months after his appointment. Whittaker’s resignation comes in response to the investigation regarding the misallocation of funds originally used for the new Trevor Colbourn Hall. It seems that Whittaker felt the situation needed something to repair the trust between the university and those who fund it in the state government. I heard rumblings of the investigation last semester and I knew those responsible no longer worked at UCF, so Whittaker’s decision comes as a surprise.

While the staff at the archives discussed this major development, we soon returned to our assignments. For me, the Home Movie Collection continued to bring more interesting experiences and information. This includes correcting some information I erroneously believed and stated in a previous entry. Specifically, I thought the family I am currently observing took vacations at Camp Whittier in California. More realistically (given the other locales they visited), the family camped at Whit’s End Campground in West Ossipee, New Hampshire (the notes left by the donor indicate this site being the correct one).

Aside for more Christmas celebrations, birthdays, and cookouts, the other vacation spot for the family included Pleasure Island (not the one from Walt Disney World which opened on May 1, 1989 and closed September 27, 2008). Pleasure Island, once called the “Disneyland of East,” opened in Wakefield, Massachusetts in 1959 and the family in question visited the park in its second year of operation. Kind of like Disneyland, the park occassionally featured celebrities as part of one of their shows. In this particular instance, Chuck Connors of The Rifleman television show fame appeared and gave a rifle demonstration. I remembering watching The Rifleman reruns on TV Land with my father and seeing Connors brought those memories back.

Like Euclid Beach Park, Pleasure Island did not last. The park closed its doors in 1969 due in part to the nature of the New England region’s weather (short summers). Fortunately, the footage provided another glimpse of a place that longer exists. In the middle of reviewing the footage, Mr. Ogreten notified me that the he could give the Library of Congress Classification Test at anytime. I finished the particular file I watched and let him know I wanted to take it at that minute.

When I first took this this test, I explained in detail of what the test included during that 2017 Fall Semester post. To avoid retreading old ground, I am going to be brief about the test. Mr. Ogreten scrambled the flash cards that contained Library of Congress classification numbers and I needed to restore them in the correct order. I felt confident in my ability and I did manage to accomplish the goal of the test. While I admit that one card gave me trouble regarding its placement, I feel I made the right decision.

When my shift ended, I packed the Home Movie Collection hard drive and returned the collection materials to the stacks. As I said my farewells, Mr. Ogreten reminded me that my first shelving experience begins on Friday. At the time, I thought this additional responsibility might not be too difficult. Time will tell. After bidding the staff farewell, I left for the day.

In review, I continued my observation of the Home Movie Collection and took the Library of Congress Classification Test. On a much larger perspective, President Whittaker’s resignation surely counts among one of the most controversial moment in the history of the University of Central Florida. While waiting to see what the future brings, I intend to continue my duties tomorrow. Until then, enjoy the rest of the evening and stay safe! Bye!

Author: 57r3l574d

I am currently a Graduate Student at the University of Central Florida and simultaneously employed by the university library's Special Collections and University Archives as a Other Personnel Service (OPS) Student. Expected to graduate in 2019 with a History MA - Public History Track.

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