The Legacy Center at Drexel is the repository for the records of Drexel's predecessor institution, the Women's Medical College of Pennsylvania, which was established in 1850 as the first medical school for women in the United States. This archival collection documents the many roles women have played and continue to play in the medical field, and reveals stories of women who courageously and successfully challenged the status quo in their time. In an effort to make these records more accessible, particularly to girls and young women, the Legacy Center will take materials from this vast collection, formerly accessible to researchers and scholars only, and make them available online. This project will offer a new model of interpretation of these archives, through online learning tools that demystify history through guided discovery, and games developed with the input of high school students.
Drexel's Legacy Center, an archive and special collections library with a focus on the history of women in medicine, began the process of developing dynamic digital programming for teens that will explore issues of gender disparity and women's history. The projects solicited the input of young people, in order to determine their technological inclinations and habits, and to test new methods of presenting and interpreting digitized primary source materials. The planning team included gaming experts, teens, parents, teachers, gender historians, archivists, and a teen marketing specialist. This research and development period resulted in a 2012 Project Grant to create Playing with the Past: A Digital History Toolkit, an online resource that will make these materials available to new audiences for the first time, including high school students and teachers.