Strengthening the College’s Mission to Provide Accessibility and Promote Inclusion

The creative faculty of the Department of Art & Design at County College of Morris is once again using virtual reality to make 19th-century history come alive in Morristown. Through the use of innovative photography and engineering, this immersive and interactive virtual reality experience enables all patrons to visit the early years of the Industrial Revolution at Historic Speedwell.

“This is a continuation of the project we began in Fall 2021,” says Hrvoje Slovenc, associate professor of Photography at CCM. ‘’Our first virtual tour was done for Fosterfields Living Historical Farm to make New Jersey’s first living farm accessible to all.”

CCM is committed to providing opportunities for all students. Therefore, it’s a natural step for the college to continue to respond a request by the Morris County Park Commission t enhance accessibility at the Birthplace of the Telegraph.

Panoramic scene of interior

“We were thrilled to be involved again,” says Slovence. “Part of the mission of the college’s photography program is to engage in community projects.” This project enables visitors to see and understand how industrialization and technological advancements helped shape society. This is also a great example of how technology can be harnessed to solve real-world problems and create meaningful experiences for diverse audiences.

The creative process began with Slovenc and his colleague Nicole Schwartz, assistant professor of Photography, using 360-degree cameras to shoot an assortment of high-end photographs of the periodic rooms at Historic Speedwell. “Every 360 shot is a collage of 12 individual images that we stitched together,” says Slovenc, for a total of 192 or 16 scenes.

Making these virtual reality tours accessible to people with mobility impairments is a crucial step towards creating a more inclusive society adhering to the college’s mission.

Visitors to the eight-acre center comprised of nine buildings may choose to participate in a variety of hands-on exhibits for learning and enjoyment, including that of the S.S. Savannah, the first steamship to cross the Atlantic Ocean. Visitors may also see the remains of Speedwell Iron Works and take a tour of the tranquil location with a park, a waterfall and a lake surrounded by trails.

To learn more about Historic Speedwell visit