NEA taking the past into the future

A Joint Symposium of NEA and Simmons SLIS

OCTOBER 1, 2022

Program Description 

In the archives, generations converge every day. Generations of archivists work alongside one another — students, early career, mid career, seasoned archivists and retirees — each shaped by different generations of theory, practice, and innovation. Archival collections hold generations of human experience — traces of community, identity, and meaning; collisions of past, present, and future. The Joint NEA/Simmons SLIS Fall 2022 Symposium will convene archivists of every career stage, as together we explore how generational convergence shapes our work, our collections, and us.

Schedule (subject to change) 

9:30 - 10:00 Registration and refreshments
10:00 - 10:10 Welcome and opening remarks
10:10 - 12:00 Session 1: Inside the Archivists' Studio
(Generations of Archivists and Archival Work)
12:00 - 1:30 Lunch on your own
On return from lunch, coffee, tea, and assorted savory and sweet snacks will be served prior to the start of Session 2
1:30 - 3:20 Session 2: Generations in Archival Collections
3:20 - 3:30 Closing remarks
3:30 - 5:00

Tour: Newly renovated Simmons University library and archives*
Tour: Museum of Fine Arts library*
Workshop: Reading Cursive Handwriting*

5:00 ‘tilSocial gathering: Trillium Brewing - Fenway*


session Descriptions 

Session 1: Inside the Archivists’ Studio
Session 1 is loosely based on the interview format used by James Lipton in his long-running TV show “Inside the Actors’ Studio.” Join us for chats with archivists as we discuss their experiences in the field, hear about their repositories, and learn from their unique perspectives. Part of this session will be devoted to audience participation so bring your questions!

Panelists include:
Michael Comeau, Executive Director, Massachusetts State Archives
Marta Crilly, Archivist for Research and Outreach, Boston City Archives
Krista Ferrante, Corporate Archivist & Group Lead for Records and Archives, MITRE Corporation
Jen Hale, Lead Archivist, Perkins School for the Blind
Eliot Wilczek, Records and Knowledge Management Engineer, MITRE Corporation
Melanie Wisner, Accessioning Archivist, Houghton Library, Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Session 2: Generations in Archival Collections
Archival collections are as varied as the people who created them and the people who work with them. In our afternoon session, we hear from a panel of archivists who describe notable collections from their repositories, discussing the provenance of the collection, context about why the collections are important, and the preservation challenges they encountered as they processed, arranged, and described them. Attendees will have the chance to ask questions to better understand how archival collections from many eras and comprised of many elements are made available to researchers and are preserved for future users.

Panelists include:
Peter Carini, College Archivist and Records Manager, Dartmouth College
Marta Fodor, Photo Archivist, Project SAVE
David Freeburg, Archivist/Librarian, Mohegan Library and Archives
Sarah Galligan, Director of Archival & Library Collections, New Hampshire Historical Society
Julie Rosier, Archives Graduate Student, University at Albany
Elizabeth Slomba, University Archivist, University of New Hampshire
Sam Valentine, The History Project
Leah Weisse, Digital Archives Manager, GBH Educational Foundation


Online On-site
Member $35.00 $40.00
Non-member $50.00 $55.00
Unemployed/contingently employed archives worker* $26.25 $31.25
Student* $10.00 $15.00
Virtual $10.00

Registration is now open! Please follow this link to complete your registration. Meeting attendance is capped at 250 attendees; registration will close and a waitlist will be enabled when the cap is met.

To increase meeting accessibility, the Program Committee plans to offer access to some meeting content via livestream. More information about virtual participation and registration for the virtual option will be available soon.

*On September 1, 2022, the NEA Executive Board voted to approve a special low meeting rate for all student attendees and to open the Bridge member rate to any self-identified unemployed or contingently employed archives worker, regardless of membership in NEA.

accessibility & code of conduct 

The Main College Building is fully accessible. Signage will be posted outside and within the Main College Building to direct attendees to the Conference Center. All physical buildings are ADA compliant. Simmons University is happy to accommodate any request for assistance or provide information in different formats as necessary. A fully accessible elevator services the third floor where the meeting is being held in the Linda K. Paresky Conference Center.

New England Archivists is committed to creating an accessible and inclusive environment for all of our events. For questions or concerns about accessibility, interpretive services, religious observance, or any other accommodations that would make the meeting more accessible for you, please contact NEA’s Inclusion and Diversity Committee at

All participants including presenters, instructors, vendors, or others involved in the event are required to abide by the NEA Code of Conduct.

Directions and parking 

Find the best information about traveling to Simmons University by car and by public transit on the Simmons website.

If traveling by public transit, please note that the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (MBTA) is implementing significant service changes this fall that may affect your travel. Visit the MBTA website for the most current information.

If traveling by car, please visit the Simmons website for information about parking in the campus garage. Attendees will have Saturday access to the garage at an all-day rate of $14.65. Garage exit tickets can be collected at the registration desk when checking in. When exiting the garage at the end of the day, attendees will insert the exit ticket provided and be prompted to pay the special rate. The garage is located at 86 Avenue Louis Pasteur, Boston, MA 02115, and you can click here for a direct link to the Simmons University Parking Garage on Google Maps.

The Linda K. Paresky Conference Center is located inside the Main College Building, which is just a quick walk (less than 200 feet) across the Academic Quad from the Parking Garage. See the Simmons University Campus Map for more information.


Local Lunch Options

Lunch in between sessions is on your own. You will have an hour and a half for lunch (12 pm – 1:30 pm) and there are many restaurants located in the Fenway area serving a variety of cuisines. Here are some nearby recommendations, with restaurants offering kosher (K), halal (H), gluten-free (GF), vegetarian (VG), and vegan (V) options noted:

Blaze Pizza, 1282 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02215 (0.6 mi) (GF, VG, V)
Cafe Landwer, 900 Beacon St, Boston, MA 02215 (0.6 mi) (K, VG, V)
CAVA, 1346 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02215 (0.5 mi) (GF, VG, V)
El Pelón Taqueria, 92 Peterborough St, Boston, MA 02215 (0.6 mi) (VG, V)
Sufra Mediterranean Food, 52 Queensberry St, Boston, MA 02215 (0.4 mi) (H, VG)
Sweet Cheeks Q, 1381 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02215 (0.4 mi) (GF, VG)
Thaitation, 129 Jersey St, Boston, MA 02215 (0.4 mi) (VG, V)
Time Out Market Boston, 401 Park Dr, Boston, MA 02215 (0.4 mi) (VG, V)
Yard House, 126 Brookline Ave, Boston, MA 02215 (0.5 mi) (GF, VG, V)

The Common Grounds Café on the first floor of the Main College Building will also be open for those looking for a quick snack or coffee.

Sticking around Boston after the meeting? Join your fellow attendees for an informal gathering at the Trillium Brewing - Fenway beer garden (next to Time Out Market at the Landmark Center - 401 Park Dr, Boston, MA 02215) starting at 5 pm.

Be sure to check out some other events taking place in Boston during the weekend and explore these recommended museums as well!

Concerts & Events

There are multiple concerts taking place Sept. 30 - Oct. 2 at the House of Blues, Big Night Live, TD Garden, and Leader Bank Pavilion. Please visit their websites to see what shows might interest you.

Harpoon Octoberfest, Sept. 30, 6 pm, Harpoon Brewery, 306 Northern Ave, Boston, MA 02120
Boston Pizza Festival, Oct. 1-2, City Hall Plaza, 1 City Hall Square, Boston, MA 02203
Boston Celtics Preseason vs. Charlotte Hornets, Oct. 2, 1 pm, TD Garden, 100 Legends Way, Boston, MA 02114


Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum, 306 Congress St, Boston, MA 02210
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Columbia Point, Boston, MA 02125
Harvard Museum of Natural History, 26 Oxford St, Cambridge, MA 02138
Institute of Contemporary Art, 25 Harbor Shore Dr, Boston, MA 02210
Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, 25 Evans Way, Boston, MA 02115
Museum of Fine Arts, 465 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115
Museum of Science, 1 Museum Of Science Driveway, Boston, MA 02114
New England Aquarium, 1 Central Wharf, Boston, MA 02110
USS Constitution Museum, Building 22, Charlestown Navy Yard, Charlestown, MA 02129


In accordance with current COVID-19 policy at Simmons University, masks are welcome but not required in our meeting venue. The Simmons policy on masking reads:

Effective June 6, 2022, masks are optional on the Simmons campus for those who are vaccinated and boosted, except in the Health Center and certain spaces where there is posted signage that masks are still required. Those who are unvaccinated are asked to remain masked while indoors on the Simmons campus.

Attendees are encouraged to read more about COVID protocols in place at Simmons and to reach out to the Program Committee Co-chairs at and with any questions or concerns.

Program Committee

Caitlin Birch, Co-chair
Kathy Wisser, Co-chair
Danita Callender
Abby Huntley
Rachel Kindred
Sarah Lerner
Robin Merrow
Caleb Simone
Karen Urbec
Elizabeth Wilkinson

With leadership from: Emily Atkins, NEA Meeting Coordinator


The Joint NEA/Simmons SLIS Fall 2022 Symposium is a collaboration of New England Archivists and the Simmons University School of Library and Information Science. The Symposium is envisioned, planned, and hosted by a team of NEA volunteers and current SLIS students with generous support from Simmons University. While NEA meetings are always open to all archival workers across and beyond New England, we extend a special welcome to student attendees as we gather on the Simmons campus. Following the meeting, we invite you to join NEA and take advantage of all the benefits of NEA membership.
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