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Grant number like: AB-50053-09

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Award Number Grant ProgramAward RecipientProject TitleAward PeriodApproved Award Total
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AB-50053-09Education Programs: Humanities Initiatives at Historically Black Colleges and UniversitiesNorfolk State UniversityWaterways to Freedom: The Underground Railroad in Virginia7/1/2009 - 12/31/2011$100,000.00CassandraL.Newby-Alexander   Norfolk State UniversityNorfolkVA23504-8050USA2009African American StudiesHumanities Initiatives at Historically Black Colleges and UniversitiesEducation Programs10000001000000

A project to create a historical simulation of the Underground Railroad in Virginia by using interactive gaming technology to educate high school and college students.

Waterways to Freedom: the Underground Railroad in Virginia, will create a digital simulation with historical content and interactive educational features. We are calling this approach Empathetic Simulation Competition Accessing Past Experiences (ESCAPE). Abolitionism was just as important in the South as it was in the North, albeit as an underground movement. For port areas, such as Hampton Roads, Virginia that lay on the east coast's most important waterways, the story about how individuals and networks of people organized this resistance continues to captivate the public's imagination. However, common myths circulating about the activities of the Underground Railroad distract from the realities of the stories, in part because these myths are dramatic and elicit empathy. By approaching this material using ESCAPE, we hope to combine realism and dramatic simulation to our educational objectives by infusing historically possible dialogue, motivations, and actions.