Atifa Rawan, Yan Han Honored With Ringing of USS Arizona Bell

Atifa Rawan, Yan Han Honored With Ringing of USS Arizona Bell

By Alexis BlueUniversity Communications
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Atifa Rawan
Atifa Rawan
Yan Han
Yan Han

The bell of the USS Arizona was rung today to honor two University of Arizona librarians for their work on a project to digitize and provide online access to a one-of-a-kind collection of historical materials on Afghanistan.

The bell – which is rung only on significant occasions in the life of the UA – is tolled at the Student Union Memorial Center on the third Wednesday of each month during the academic year to recognize faculty, staff, students and alumni for achievements that bring prestige and recognition to themselves and the University.

Librarian Atifa Rawan manages the Afghan history project, which aims to provide free digital access to unique materials held by the Afghanistan Centre at Kabul University through UAiR, the UA's institutional repository. The international collaboration is intended to help provide scholars and policymakers with valuable insights into the historical, social, economic and cultural heritage of Afghanistan, while ensuring Afghans have a record of one of their country's darkest periods of war and social upheaval.

Associate librarian Yan Han is systems expert for the project, funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, and has traveled to Afghanistan to provide training and support services as part of his role.

The Afghanistan Centre houses an extensive collection of documents covering pre-1989 Afghanistan. The majority of the digital collection covers materials from 1989 to 2006, including endangered Jihad publications. About 55,000 documents were made freely accessible through UAiR in March. About 300,000 pages are expected to be available by the end of 2009.

The bell was rung at 12:07 p.m. The time corresponds with the date that the battleship was sunk at Pearl Harbor: Dec. 7, 1941.

For more information, or to submit a nomination, visit the Outstanding University Achievements Web site.

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