TEMPE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -- Your day-to-day life during the coronavirus epidemic might seem mundane, but some professors at Arizona State University want to hear about it. They have created a website called "A Journal of the Plague Year: An Archive of COVID-19." It's an online archive where anyone in the world can document their journey through the pandemic.
"You know when you first tell someone, 'We want to know what you're doing,' they're like, 'Oh, I'm not doing anything important,'" said Catherine O'Donnell. "And then you say, 'Yes you are,' and then they say, 'You're right.'"
All three state public universities are planning to resume in-person classes for the fall semester.
What started as a project for graduate students, has turned into somewhat of a global movement. There are photos of empty store shelves, children taking Zoom classes, emotional journal entries and some humorous memes that depict the times. Arizona's Family spoke to two of the people behind it, including O'Donnell and Mark Tabeau, who are both associate professors at ASU.
On the website, you can share photos, videos, audio messages -- anything that captures your experience.
“International students account for hundreds of millions of dollars in tuition payments."
"We're not medical doctors, right? We're not frontline workers in that way, but we are used to collecting information and we know what it's like as historians to wonder, 'What was happening in the past?' and not have those sources," O'Donnell said.
The idea is to give people in the future a meaningful glimpse into what life was like for all of us in this moment in 2020. O'Donnell and Tabeau say it may make people feel more connected to the past and could lead to better decisions. The website went live about six weeks ago, and so far it has nearly 2,500 posts from places like Australia and Peru. Think of it kind of like a diary that will be helpful for historians. For now, it's created a sense of community, Tebeau said.
"I've been surprised at how... how comforting it's been to be involved in the process," Tebeau said. "We did it in part to help our students make sense of this moment, but it's also helping us as scholars to make sense of the moment."
You can share your story here.