The Students Behind The Face Mask

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the OCCE launched Virtual Summer programming which included the creation of Behind The Face Mask: Stories of COVID-19, an Oral History project.

Students applied to be a part of the project, where they archived oral history interviews and created the Behind The Face Mask: Stories of COVID-19 podcast to preserve the experiences of Winston-Salem residents during the pandemic. Throughout the duration of the project, Wake Forest students were split into five small teams: Archive, Podcast, Local Business, Health Care, and Racial Justice.

    About the Teams

  • Archive

    The Archive team created an interactive and immersive archival experience through the digital publishing platform, Scalar; processing, tagging, and providing descriptions for each interview conducted throughout the duration of the project. Additionally, students worked alongside the Special Collections & Archives division at ZSR Library, to add each interview to its collection for future research and studies.

  • Healthcare

    Members of the Healthcare team collected personal accounts from various health care professionals — doctors, medical students, and public health officials — who witnessed and experienced the pandemic throughout Winston-Salem hospitals, including Wake Forest Baptist Health. The interviews provide intimate depictions of hospital settings, an analysis of how communities have dealt with the virus, and detailed explanations of the difficulties faced during the pandemic.

  • Local Business

    The Local Business team reviewed how the COVID-19 pandemic impacted businesses in and around Winston-Salem, interviewing owners and employees of small businesses: from coffee shops, thrift stores, hair salons, and more. The interviews dive into the unique aspects and struggles of each business and highlight how they have both adapted and changed since the pandemic began, all from the perspective of those who know small businesses best.

  • Podcast

    The Podcast team created and edited the podcast and website content. As interviews were submitted, both the Podcast Editor and Podcast Host wrote, edited, finalized, and uploaded each episode of Behind the Face Mask: Stories of COVID-19. In addition, students on the team were responsible for all creative aspects of the podcast including logo creation and graphics, including social media content.

  • Racial Justice

    The Racial Justice team focused on protest and resistance experiences as people in Winston-Salem raised their voices against systems of structural violence and systemic racism. Together, the team interviewed local protestors, activists, organizers, and community leaders, focusing on the daily experiences of the city’s residents as they employed diverse forms of expression while navigating the health risks associated with large gatherings.


Archive Team

Profile picture for Parker Beverly ('23)
Profile picture for Kelli Frangoulis ('21)

Healthcare Team

Profile picture for Eduardo Castellanos ('23)
Profile picture for Jackson Cole ('22)
Profile picture for Will Desvalles (21)
Profile picture for Anuja Palacharla ('21)

Local Business Team

Profile picture for Amanda Cummins ('21)
Profile picture for Sloane Larsen ('23)
Profile picture for Braden Strackman ('23)
Profile picture for Caroline Zaelke ('22)

Podcast Team

Profile picture for Jazmin Aguilar ('23)
Profile picture for Ryley Bright ('21)
Profile picture for Elinor Grage ('22)

Racial Justice Team

Profile picture for Ian Davis-Hui ('23)
Profile picture for Rafael Lima ('21)
Profile picture for Jack Portman '22)