The mission of Middle Tennessee State University’s Albert Gore Research Center is to collect, preserve, and make accessible the records of the university and the unique collections pertaining to Middle Tennessee’s political, social, and cultural history that support education, research, and civic engagement.
The Albert Gore Research Center mission builds upon four interconnected themes—archives, research, education, and engagement—all of which place student educational and professional training needs at the forefront.
Archives: The Gore Center documents the history of politics, policy and social, economic, and cultural change in Tennessee and the South as well as the history of Middle Tennessee State University by collecting, processing, and making available unique archival collections. Our collections policy emphasizes collections that build on these themes, broadly defined. We collect the papers of elected officials, citizen activists, community groups, heritage organizations, non-government organizations, and individuals whose records preserve the story of change in Tennessee and the South. We also engage in ongoing oral history efforts to capture the stories of individuals whose lives created or reflected these themes.
Education: The Gore Center enhances the academic quality of instruction at MTSU by serving as a site for hands-on, student-centered learning in primary source research, archives, record management, museum and exhibit studies, digital engagement, and other educational activities which involve unique, original primary sources. We serve both undergraduate and graduate students. All Gore Center staff, therefore, are first and foremost teachers serving the MTSU student community. As an on-campus archive easily accessible to our faculty and students, we offer a significant enhancement to the academic quality of the educational and research experience offered by the University.
Research: The Gore Center serves the research needs of MTSU students and faculty, professional scholars and engages the wider community in the subjects where we have resources. We are also a site of research in archives and records management, addressing research questions that inform the field of archival studies such as oral history and digital document preservation and access.
Engagement: The Gore Center must be engaged with external constituencies, through partnerships on campus, in our local community, and in the wider world. Outreach and engagement reaches all relevant audiences, from those here at MTSU to policy makers to professional and scholarly audiences. Our undergraduate and graduate students, as well as AGRC staff should promote this critical mission through engagement activities such as developing exhibits, giving public presentations, working with historical and cultural organizations, and engaging critical scholarly and professional audiences.