Really really rich people + education = the founding of the Yale Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage, which was funded by a gift of #25 million dollars from Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin ’78. The Institute will be focused on the conservation and digitization of art and artifacts; the conservation core will work on providing specialized tools and new technologies and methods to reduce the threats to cultural objects, while the the digitization side will apply new technological tools to capture, store, curate, and share findings and materials digitally. Over time, the Institute would like to build its faculty and staff resources to become more involved in addressing preservation issues in the field. It was also noted in the article that a program of online courses will be developed based on the University’s cultural heritage collections.
This makes me a happy camper. However, as psyched as I am to see all these new opportunities for some quality hardcore academia in cultural heritage studies, I hope Yale will remember its undergraduate students as the Institute develops. We like fancy research opportunities, state-of-the-art-equipment, and internship opportunities too. Yalies past and future, you better demand it.