Skip to main content

Records of the Public Affairs Residential College (PARC)

Identifier: 5/12

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents

Collection consists of born-digital records from the Public Affairs Residential College, including 330 megabytes of born-digital material and one archival artifact, dated from circa 2019 to 2022. The records are especially strong in their documentation of how PARC adapted its social and academic programming during the COVID-19 pandemic – particularly the meeting minutes, flyers, photos and videos, and newsletters in the collection.

Series 1: Organization records (2019 – 2021) consists of three subseries; administrative records, meeting minutes, and training documents. The administrative records series contains two sub-subseries; membership records and statements as well as a supply inventory and the organization’s constitution. Within subseries, files are arranged in chronological order.

Series 2: Events (2019 – 2022) consists of two subseries; promotional flyers and photos and videos. Flyers including: social events on and off campus, guest lectures, holiday celebrations, contests, and dances. Within the flyers subseries, files are arranged in chronological order. Photos and videos are included in a single combined subseries; including: social events on and off campus, guest lectures, and campus events such as Field Day. Duplicates appear within the flyers subseries and Series 3’s newsletter subseries. Within the photos and videos subseries, files are further arranged in additional subseries topically by event when multiple photos or videos exist. Photos and videos where dates could not be identified, or only one photo or video was taken, appear in the “other photos” sub-subseries.

Series 3: Marketing and Outreach (2019 – 2022) consists of four subseries; newsletters, logos, website, and surveys. The archival object, a water bottle, has been integrated into the logos subseries. Duplicates appear within the newsletters subseries and Series 2’s flyers subseries. Within subseries, files are arranged in chronological order.


  • 2019-2022


Conditions Governing Access

Some files have been redacted to remove personal identifying information to protect the privacy of individuals.

Conditions Governing Use

The intellectual property rights of the born-digital material in this collection belong to the original creators and may be subject to copyright or other restrictions.

Historical Note

The Public Affairs Residential College (PARC), is one of Northwestern University’s ten residential colleges. The residential colleges are a Northwestern on-campus housing model where students live together in an on-campus housing facility that hosts social and academic events.

Each residential college is unified by a single or multiple themes, and headed by a faculty member who serves as the Faculty Chair. Chairs and student officers recruit faculty and staff members for the college’s fellow programs, which supports faculty presence through meals in the college, informal presentations known as “firesides”, and outings around campus and Chicago. In addition, fellows routinely lead small credit-bearing seminars reserved for college members and mentor residents as research assistants through a specially funded program (“Housing Options” website, Northwestern Student Affairs Residential Services. Accessed July 18, 2023).

PARC was founded in 1991, making it the most recently-established residential college. It originally occupied the residential unit at 1838 Chicago Avenue, and was relocated to 650 Emerson Street, known as the North Mid-Quads (NMQ), during the 2015-2016 academic year. (Public Affairs Residential College website, “history”. Accessed July 18, 2023).

Under the guidance of Faculty Chair Keith Woodhouse, the focus of the residential college has expanded to include public affairs of all sorts, from the more standard social and political debate to almost every other subject imaginable – such as Faculty fellow Daniel Immerwahr’s 2020 fireside chat “We’re the Good Guys, Right?: Marvel Movies and the Anxieties of Empire”.

Members of PARC are sometimes referred to as “PARCers” (pronounced “parkers”), and their mascot is a porcupine called the “PARCupine”. PARC is occasionally colloquially referred to as NMQ, which refers to the dorm the college occupies.


330 Megabytes

Language of Materials



The collection consists of records of the Public Affairs Residential College (PARC) at Northwestern University, dating from 2019-2022, including approximately 330 megabytes of born-digital files of organization records, event records, photographs, marketing and outreach materials, and one physical artifact.


Collection is arranged into 3 corresponding series based on content: 1. Organization Records (2019 - 2021), 2. Events (2019 - 2022), and 3. Marketing and Outreach (2019-2022), with each series containing topical subseries. Within series and subseries, files are arranged in chronological order. Original file names have been changed and numerical prefixes have been added to correspond with the chronological arrangement.

The original order of the born-digital material received by the Archives has not been retained as the arrangement of the material. Individual files have been re-arranged into series and subseries to allow subsequent digital material to be easily integrated into a single system of arrangement. Duplicate files may have been deleted. Sensitive information may have been redacted.

Organizational Records is comprised of administrative records, meeting minutes, and training documents. Within the administrative records sub-series, there are additional sub-subseries for membership records and statements.

Events is comprised of event flyers and photos, with some videos appearing within the photo subseries.

Marketing and Outreach is comprised of newsletters, logos, web content, and surveys. The archival artifact has been integrated into the logos subseries of Marketing and Outreach.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

Available born-digital materials in this collection are delivered to researchers in born-digital formats. Requests for different access methods, such as those using computers or with the aid of assistive technologies, must be made in advance of research appointment to Library staff.

Custodial History

Data from born-digital materials in this collection were shared virtually via cloud drives and transferred using secure networks to minimize corruption and compression. Preservation files have been assessed in stored in a secure environment to allow for future data integrity and authenticity checking and repair according to the Libraries' Digital Preservation Policy.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The University Archives acquired these records on several dates: Accession #18-115 was acquired on June 1, 2018; Accession #2019-136-5 was acquired on January 4, 2022; Accession #2020-30-5 was acquired on May 1, 2021; Accession #2021-194-5 was acquired on May 1, 2021; Accession #2022-160-5 was acquired on May 1, 2022.

The Public Affairs Residential College donated the accessions that comprise this collection. Donations were made by the following PARC members: Zaria Howell (accession #2019-136-5), Ari Sloss (accession #2020-30-5 and #2021-194-5), and Reagan Dennison (accession #2022-160-5).

Processing Information

Processed by Abbey Maynard, 2023. Digital preservation actions on born-digital items include virus scan, normalizing file formats, and redacting sensitive information.

Guide to the Records of the Public Affairs Residential College (PARC)
Abbey Maynard
August 2023
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Library Details

Part of the Northwestern University Archives Repository

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US