West Virginia University School of Journalism students will travel to Washington, D.C., Memorial Day weekend to take part in the National World War II Reunion on the National Mall.

Officials from the Veterans History Project of the Library of Congress asked WVU to participate in the program, citing the school’s work on West Virginia’s Veterans History Project as exceptional.

I would definitely say, without hesitation, you (WVU) are one of our strongest partners,said Tim Shurtter, with the Veterans History Project.

In fall of 2003, the school launched West Virginia’s Veterans History Projectpart of the National Veterans History Project, which was designed to preserve the real-life experiences of American veterans and civilians who were involved in World War I, World War II, and the Korean, Vietnam and Persian Gulf Wars.

The project encourages war veterans, their families, veterans groups, community groups and students to audio- and videotape the memories of veterans’time in service to be preserved in the Library of Congress.

Over the last year, journalism students have collected more than 75 histories and have taught civic groups throughout West Virginia how to collect the histories.

The four-day Washington, D.C., event, May 27-30, will include ceremonies and activities coordinated by the Smithsonian Institution’s Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Journalism students have been asked to participate by collecting veterans’histories on the Mall and by helping to man the project tent.

One of seven pavilions and two performance stages on the Mall during the Memorial Day weekend, the Veterans History Project Pavilion (located near the National Air and Space Museum) will collect memoirs and stories on-site from those who experienced the war overseas and on the home front.

The National Reunion coincides with the American Battle Monuments Commission’s dedication of the National World War II Memorial on Saturday, May 29. The dedication ceremony and reunion honor the 16 million soldiers and sailors who served in the U.S. armed forces during the war, the more than 400,000 who died and the millions who supported the war effort from home.

More information about the National Reunion weekend can be found on the Web athttp://www.folklife.si.edu,http://www.wwiimemorial.com,http://www.abmc.govandhttp://www.washington.org/americacelebrates.

For more information on West Virginia’s Veterans History project, visithttp://veteranshistory.wvu.edu.