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First Public APPearance

By R. Mark Zeitzmann

The Mary of the Americas/Mary APParitions Project received its first public appearance at the Chicago Colloquium on Digital Humanities and Computer Science 2018 (DHCS 2018). This conference took place from November 9–11, 2018, at the Water Tower campus of Loyola University Chicago. Attending DHCS 2018 and presenting the Marian project, with aid of a poster, were Neomi De Anda, Ph.D., Corinne Woodruff (Religious Studies and English Major, with minors in Human Rights, Women, and Gender Studies and Anthropology), and Mark Zeitzmann (MA theology student). While at DHCS 2018, Dr. De Anda, Corinne, and Mark were able to engage other scholars, share about the Mary of the Americas/Mary APParitions Project, and receive feedback.

The Mary of the Americas/Mary APParitions Project is an interdisciplinary project of the University of Dayton that has included the work of twenty-one undergraduate students from both the College of Arts and Sciences and the School of Engineering, librarians from the Marian Library, two students in the Master of Arts in Theological Studies program, and Dr. De Anda, a faculty member of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Dayton. Among the undergraduate students, three were engineering majors in the senior year Capstone seminar of the School of Engineering Innovation Center, seventeen were in a Religious Studies Latino/a Experience course. The original idea for the project came from Samantha Mayne ‘18 alumna (International Studies with a concentration in Peace and Global Security).  This project is partly inspired by the game, Pokemon Go, adapted for Marian devotions and apparitions in the Americas. Through this pedagogical tool, users may interact with a database through QR codes or directly via the website.

The three engineering students worked on developing the Benchmark App, available for download from for Android devices, that can scan certain QR codes. The students in the Latino/a Experience course did research on seventy-nine devotions/apparitions of Mary across twenty-three countries of the Americas. The students in the Latino/a Experience course were able to do their research with the help and materials provided by the Marian Library and its archives. Jacob Sheehan and Mark Zeitzmann, both graduate students, compiled the research into a database, the / website, and worked on designing a flyer, respectively.

Moving forward, the Mary of the Americas/Mary APParitions Project will be shared more broadly on the University of Dayton campus in 2019. Keep an eye out for it!

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