The Historic Trust, formerly titled the Fort Vancouver National Trust, is partnering with the Creative Media and Digital Culture program at Washington State University Vancouver in the development of a new engagement tool that will allow visitors to experience the history of Providence Academy through mobile devices.

Once the project is launched, after December 6, 2017, visitors to the site will be able to access a free app and point their smart phone or tablet toward areas outside and inside the Providence Academy. This will activate visual and auditory episodes created through augmented reality applications. “The app will bring history to life and showcase the Academy’s stories, people, and cultural significance in inventive and imaginative ways,” said Richard Burrows, Director of Community Outreach and Programs at The Historic Trust.

The WSU Vancouver class of 21 students will create ten episodes, starting with Mother Joseph, the architect and founder of Providence Academy, welcoming visitors to the building. Other virtual experiences will include ringing the bell in the tower, lighting a candle in the Shrine to the Blessed Mother, viewing buildings no longer standing on the grounds, and retracing the Sisters of Providence fundraising excursions throughout the West.

Dene Grigar

“This collaboration is representative of The Historic Trust’s commitment to new, innovative, and interactive programming that is at the forefront of technologies,” said Burrows. “Access to the visionary leadership of Dr. Dene Grigar, Director and Professor of WSU Vancouver’s Creative Media and Digital Culture, in combination with the extraordinary abilities of the students, will result in groundbreaking opportunities for the public and visitors to gain deeper understanding about our roots and history.”

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Vancouver Family Magazine