By Janelle Fisher
City Pages Editor
Teaching Press students and supporters gathered last Wednesday, Oct. 18, to celebrate the launch of the latest book put out by UW-Green Bay’s Teaching Press — a book documenting the Lower Fox River PCB cleanup efforts.
The book, authored by Captain Greg Neuschafer, retired US Navy Oceanographer and University Wisconsin-Green Bay Distinguished Alumni, includes a timeline and highlights of one of the nation’s most ambitious environmental stability projects to date with QR codes spread throughout linking to an extensive digital collection of supporting documentation compiled by Neuschafer and housed at UW-Green Bay’s Cofrin Library.
The book, Neuschafer said, is meant to be a tool to help others understand the significance of this environmental project happening in their own backyards.
“This book is a research tool,” he said. “It’s a wrench. It’s to get you into a database that we’ve put together. So it’s not for reading for excitement or for pleasure. I want to invite you to, from your own perspective, dig into this library and see what you can learn.”
While the collection and organization of the content which makes up the book and digital library was an ambitious undertaking for Neushcafer, Professor Rebecca Meacham said the physical construction of the book proved to be quite an ambitious undertaking for her students as well as they navigated the book’s many fold-out pages.
“What the students started to figure out was that we could have an entire book filled with what we call ‘foldy-outty’ pages — it’s the technical term,” Meacham said. “The fold-out pages have QR codes on them and when you use your phone to scan the QR code, it goes to a resource in the Cofrin Library digital collection that Greg has put together.”
The folded pages, though, meant that the book could not be sent out for production, and after some trial and error, Meacham said the Teaching Press students discovered that the best way to produce copies of the book was to hand-fold each page.
“They had it worked out to partnerships — one folded in and the other folded the other side in,” Meaham said. “And the fold the way they do so [the book] can be bound. Because if you fold in too far, you bind your book and then can’t open the pages. It’s an interesting little puzzle.”
At the time of the launch, an impressive 104 copies had been made and were ready to be distributed to attendees of the launch party and those who wish to purchase the book.
More information about Teaching Press and where to buy this book and others can be found at uwgb.edu/teaching-press/projects.