Science & Memory Science & Memory is an initiative of the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication. From a practical standpoint, it incorporates classroom and production time with experiential trips, discussions with scientists, and exploration of narrative and strategy. The program began in 2014, when SOJC faculty members Mark Blaine, Torsten Kjellstrand, Dan Morrison, and Deborah Morrison leveraged a combined 100+ years of storytelling, visual journalism, and creative production to address the complex stories of climate and environment. That year, the Science & Memory cohort included those four faculty and 17 students traveling to Cordova, Alaska and living at the Orca Adventure Lodge bunkhouse. Since then, over 75 SOJC students and more Oregon faculty and staff, an LSU river engineering professor explored the Cordova, Alaska climate and environmental story. In 2017, Science & Memory Oregon Coast explored the central Oregon Coast, visiting Oregon Institute of marine Biology and the affiliated Charleston Marine Life Center, and observing along the Cape Arago tidal pools and beaches.
Science & Memory grows from these goals:
For students Provide unparalleled experiential learning for students curious about how to tell compelling stories on complex climate and environmental issues in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska by putting them in the field with innovative gear and resources For storytellers and professionals-in-training Develop stories that engage and compel audiences to be curious, thoughtful, and explore the issues of climate and its broader impacts on people For our professions Train young professionals to use a variety of narrative and visual tools that underscore an ability to translate complex data and fact into compelling factual story For our future Offer audiences an image, a thought, a quote, a social post that compels citizens about the most important issue of our time, one that connects to our economic future, to social justice themes, and to cultural legacy For our university Showcase the development of transdisciplinary professional approaches to complex cultural issues through narrative story and academic research
Climate change offers the unintended consequence of developing a growth industry for communicators. In the next decades, professionals who understand and develop compelling stories about this topic and its related implications will experience more professional growth. Journalists, strategists, writers, designers, brand managers, and producers who translate science fact into compelling story will find more professional opportunity.
2017 Team Abbie Winn Andrew Afranji Anna Rath Becky Hoag Cheyenne Thorpe Jake Smith Jeff Dean Jessica Dean Justin Hartney Lily Cox-Skall Madison Hamilton Megan Rouse Morgan Krakow Naomi Shao Pam Cressall Ted Chen Tim Vanderhey Topacio Beerhalter Ty Boespflug Will Mallery
2016 Team Andrea Willingham Brian Amdur Dan Morrison Emma Pindell Karly DeWees KJ Hellis Madison Cameron Mackenzie Moran Miro Merrill Paige DePaepe Ryan Lund TJ Daniel Will Saunders Talia Berniker Kevin Camacho Sam Coffaro Gabi DaSilva Allison DelFium Lauren Fields August Frank Rhianna Gelhart Gabi Gomez Ashley Graves Katey Harris Emily Haugbro Sydney Humble Kara Jenness Hannah Lewman Roy Liu Ian McTigue Brittany Smith Chloe Spencer Natalie Waitt-Gibson Zishan Wang Emilie Weiss Ben White
2015 Team Andy Abyeta Arty Farkas Ben McBee Breanne Schell Clint Wilson Emma Pindell Evan Norton Hayla Beck Jen Jackson Karly Dewees Kelsey Brunner Kyra Bailey Maria Kjellstrand Mel Burke Miro Merrill Nick Walcott Paige DePaepe Sierra Morgan Spencer Orofino Taylor Richmond Will Saunders
2014 Team Adrian Garcia Alex Morrison Elora Overbey Grant Lemons Guru Amar Khalsa Helen Torney Jesse Crowell Jessica Hollowell Thurman Julia Reihs Julianne Parker Kevin Mataraci Lili Bayarmagnai Madison Kirby Mary Jane Schulte Mel Burke Mike Hobitzal Monica Sagowitz Pam Cressal Ryan Hagan Taylor Richmond
Faculty Team Torsten Kejllstrand, Professor of Practice Filmmaker and Visual Storyteller Mark Blaine, Senior Instructor II Former Director of Journalism and Science Initiative Leader Dan Morrison, Senior Instructor Visual Journalist Deborah Morrison, Carolyn Chambers Distinguished Professor of Advertising SOJC Director of Advertising
Guest Members Kelsey Bruner, University of Colorado journalism student intern Artie Farkas, Sound Technician Clint Willson, Mike N. Dooley Professor, Director of the Center for River Studies, Louisiana State University Troy Elias, SOJC Assistant Professor Ed Madison, SOJC Assistant Professor Pam Cressall, SOJC Alum and Videographer/Producer

Troy Elias and Ed Madison photograph the scenery on a walk into town as they discuss the political ramifications of climate change.

Pam Cressall returned to Alaska in 2016 as an alumni after the original 2014 trip.

Assistant Professor Troy Elias makes his first ever s'more.

Kelsey Brunner photographing Sheridan Glacier.

Professor Clint Willson sitting by Sheridan Glacier, reading something scholarly.

Artie Farkas, skipping rocks at the lake in front of Sheridan Glacier.

Dan Morrison, contemplating

The Process
This project began in 2013 as a “climate reporting project” to explore climate issues in the Pacific Northwest. In our first year, as we stood in the Orca Adventure Lodge bunkhouse and looked at the range of stories, faculty leaders realized two connected themes grew from the work: scientific fact and human experience. Our project offered a perspective of how the world is understood, through science and through memory. Thus, the name was born. Science & Memory has been a labor of love by students and faculty from the beginning. All of the assets – words, images, art – are produced by students and faculty working together. To list credits for each, to name each of the people who worked in Alaska and in Eugene would be a formidable task. Over one hundred students have contributed in some way. But a few should be named here because of their investment and beyond obligation work ethic.
This site was originally designed by then-student Mike Hobzial, a creative technologist and interactive developer, in 2014. From there, developer Sierra Morgan designed the Science & Memory 2.0. The latest version of the site, conceptualized and designed in 2017, is the work of art director Paige De Paepe. Project manager Karly DeWees gathered and managed assets to begin that process.
Editors and content wranglers include writer Melanie Burke and strategist Emma Pindell. In the early stages of Science & Memory, Monica Sagowitz wrote the directional strategic brief and platform text for the project. Many photographers, videographers, and editors have contributed to the beautiful collection of images. Will Saunders and Elora Overbey set a standard for exceptional images upheld by many others to come, including August Frank and Rhianna Gelhart. Videographer Adrian Garcia served as the first Drobo master and producer. Videographer and editor Evan Norton produced the Will You Change? Film, written by strategist Spencer Orofino. Documentary storytellers Julia Reihs and Lili Bayarmagnai created multiple chapter videos on scientists and life in Alaska to set the standard of work. Strategist and writer Hannah Lewman wrote and conceptualized multiple projects and delivered the tone of Science & Memory as we grew.
The visual integrity of the site is also a team effort. Helen Torney designed the logo in 2014 and brought our first book to life. Taylor Richmond and Miró Merrill led the use of watercolor and art as translational, strategic channel. Paige De Paepe designed the site, the Instagram visual flow, and the type family “Cordova” used throughout the site, as well a visual systems approach for the project.