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Macalester College Archives and Special Collections

Student Orgs and the College Archives

The Macalester College Archives collects, preserves, and shares materials that document the institution. Students are of course the heart of the college, but their experiences are often not found amidst a plethora of administrative minutes, reports, and publications in the Archives. Students create materials that give insight into student life: student interests; activities and events; activism and organizing; campus climate; important issues, advocacy, and awareness; student-administration relationships, etc., all of which are critical to understanding student, and college, history.

Help us fill in the gaps in our collections by sharing what you and your orgs are doing and creating!

For Student Orgs

  • Contribute to our understanding of Macalester; materials from student orgs may be the only sources a future researcher may have to draw upon to understand student experiences.
  • Make your future org leadership transitions easier.
  • Store knowledge so you and your org don't recreate the wheel every four years or lose important materials.
  • Ensure that students, especially BIPOC students and those already underrepresented, are reflected in institutional narratives, which are often built upon what's in the Archives.
  • Help future students with class projects.
  • Provide information and resources for future activists and organizing efforts.
  • Have collections to use at your future reunions.


Wondering what should be archived? We collect both print and digital materials.

  • Charters, bylaws, handbooks, and founding documents
  • Meeting minutes, reports, self-studies, newsletters
  • Zines or other publications that you create and produce
  • Membership lists
  • Promo materials: flyers, posters, announcements
  • Websites, blogs, and other social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram); contact us for questions about how to archive these!
  • Photo, scrapbooks, audio, video
  • Correspondence (email) and planning documents for programs, activities, or events

There are things we don't collect.

  • Duplicates, copies, blank forms
  • Rough drafts
  • Financial items like receipts or purchase orders
  • Materials not created by your org (e.g. newspapers or newsletters created by the college or a specific office), unless it directly relates to your organization
  • Also, we don't have space for objects or artifacts like award plaques, t-shirts, cups/mugs, BUT we would love to get pictures of the logos, or artwork on those items

It's easy to donate!

  1. Make sure your org is on-board with archiving! Reach out to us if you're interested in seeing what we might already have for your org.
  2. Contact the College Archives at We're happy to chat or meet to talk about what you have to donate. We always love meeting with students!
    1. Email us to set up an appointment. In the email, let us know your org, what types of materials you have, and the number of materials (Do you have a file folder or boxes of print documents? Email, Google docs, and other digital files covering 1 year or 4? Etc.)
  3. Fill out our donation form; if you only have a few documents to donate, you can attach them right to the form when filling it out
  4. Get your materials to us! Depending on whether you have print or digital materials:
    1. Set up a time to drop off physical materials for the Archives
    2. Send documents or forward email correspondence to
    3. Share via Google Drive or Shared Drive by adding

Your org materials will be organized, described, and preserved, along with the other materials in the Archives, according to archival best practices. Physical documents will be in archival storage; electronic documents will be added to our digital archives and backed up. The goal of Archives is to make collections available so they can be used in the future by others, including:

  • Historians researching the college
  • Current college students doing school projects
  • Future members of your student org
  • Alumni or other working on reunion projects and events
  • Activists learning about past struggles on campus

Note: Materials in the Archives can be restricted for a certain period of time if you have privacy or other concerns about what's in your materials.