This post is part of our Internship Spotlight series, which consists of short interviews with students who have completed internship positions. The interview reflects on what the student learned from the experience and any advice they’d give to individuals looking for internships. Our next spotlight is with Liam Patrick Bryant, a second year UW Museology Student.
I interned with Denshō, where I worked with two of my peers to explore digital exhibition platforms. Our research culminated in a workbook deliverable which helped support the organization’s move towards a revamped online presence.
How did you find your internship? Did you have any specific criteria you followed to find an internship?
I found my internship through the program; it was facilitated. I was looking specifically for experiences in collections, digital humanities, and their intersection. I applied for a few institutions, namely historical societies in the area, before landing on Denshō, which is an archive and repository.
What learning goals did you have going into this internship?
I was particularly interested in getting more experience in digital scholarship and the unique challenges faced by GLAMs which don’t have brick and mortar locations. How do you “exhibit” a collection when neither the exhibited items or the exhibit itself exist physically?
What did you end up learning from your internship? Did you fulfill your original learning goals? Were there any unexpected takeaways or learning moments?
I definitely fulfilled my learning goals. However cool, our research was pretty industry standard, and was by and large what we “expected”. Most notably though, it was great to get experience working in a “consultant” capacity, which boosted my confidence in considering myself a professional museologist.
How do you think your internship experience contributed to your overall graduate experience?
I think that an internship is critical to the experience. Nothing against lectures or classroom instruction, but in my eyes the impact of a professional degree is dulled if it isn’t applied to “real world” scenarios. Get out there and learn hands on!
Is there anything you wish you had done differently in your internship?
I wish I had a little more time to work on a final aspect of the deliverable. We only had 10 weeks, which is fairly short for a “farm-to-table” research project. We were able to set expectations with Denshō about their needs (which our project exceeded), but our group’s final personal goal was to add a workable example, which we didn’t have time for.
Do you have any recommendations for students looking into internships now?
Ask the program for help. I had no idea where to start, knew very few people in the city, had very little networking options, and I was still able to find one!