About the GBC Virtual Humanities Center
Mission: Great Basin College, through its Virtual Humanities Center, seeks to collect, curate, and cultivate the humanities for rural Nevada.
In August 2013, Great Basin College (GBC) was awarded a $500,000 Challenge Grant by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), one of the few colleges of its size to win such an award. The Grant provides the foundation of the Virtual Humanities Center (VHC) and its mission.
At the heart of the VHC are the core skills and habits of mind which the humanities encourage and promote: critical and creative thinking, communication, technological understanding, and personal and cultural awareness. These are not only college skills, but those actively sought by employers and necessary for democratic society. The VHC enriches and stimulates the development of these skills.
Vision: Through the humanities, we seek greater cultural and historical understanding to demystify human difference, celebrate diversity, and build an engaged citizenry to enhance the well-being of rural Nevada.
By leveraging GBC’s distance education experience and technology, the VHC is providing humanities programming throughout our service area. We are developing unique content, such as celebrating GBC’s upcoming 50th anniversary by collecting documents, photos, and oral histories. Partnering with the Great Basin Indian Archives, the University of Utah's Shoshoni Language Project, and Barrick Gold of North America, we are compiling a searchable public database of Western Shoshone oral histories. These and future projects magnify both GBC’s mission and its connections to the rich, diverse cultural communities which it serves.
Endowment: The VHC uses an endowment-financing model for sustainable funding. In addition to the National Endowment for the Humanities grant, the VHC has reached out to corporate and community partners to initiate an endowment fund for stable, long-term financing of operations.
As well as maintaining the technology infrastructure, archives, and a coordinator position, the endowment will support future humanities events and faculty- and student-generated content development.