9/11 exhibit featuring WKU alumni photos, multimedia opens

A gallery and multimedia presentation opened Thursday evening at Mass Media and Technology Hall documenting the days following 9/11. The majority of photos on display were taken by WKU students and faculty.

Amanda Young

More than 30 WKU photojournalism students went to New York City in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorism attacks. As a tribute to the 10-year anniversary, a 9/11 Memorial Exhibit opened Thursday in the Mass Media and Technology Hall gallery.

The memorial showcases more than 30 pictures and articles from students, faculty and alumni.

“This whole project is a result of students who felt they needed to be in New York after [9/11],” said James Kenney, a photojournalism professor and contributor to the exhibit.

Kenney said between 30 and 40 students made their way to Ground Zero after 9/11 to capture the atmosphere and gather information to bring back to Bowling Green.

“It was a life changing experience,” Kenney said.

The exhibit features students’ pictures of the aftermath, the memorials and the profound impact the attacks had on the people in the area.

There was also a student- and faculty-made multimedia piece, “New York: a City Searching for Hope,” on loop beneath a list of names of all the known victims of the attacks. The video featured photos and sound clip testaments of people who were affected.

“It was so powerful and somber,” said Pam Johnson, a journalism and broadcasting professor. “You could not hear a sound except the music from the video because people were so engrossed [in the exhibit].”

The exhibit not only recognizes the victims and the tragedy but also the students who sacrificed their time and money to make the trip to Ground Zero.

Former students with photos on display were invited to respond 10 years later, said Tim Broekema, a journalism professor and contributor. Those who submitted comments about their experience had it showcased next to their work.

“This was their labor of love,” said Kenney in a letter about the efforts of students on display in the exhibit.

The memorial will remain open until Sept. 23.