There are two different types of opportunities to get involved in the Museum through our Education Department. Each role is key in supporting the work of SCMA in engaging community audiences with the Museum through innovative and interactive programs.
Volunteer as a MVP
Smith students who sign up for the Education Department's Museum Volunteer Program will help out at education programs throughout the year, including Free Family Days, Second Fridays and other community events. The biggest role of this position is engaging family audiences in making art and having fun in the Museum. Mandatory volunteer orientations will be offered in the fall (and again in the spring semester if you can't commit to fall). Being an MVP is a great way to get involved in the Museum for people who might not enjoy teaching in front of large groups but appreciate one-on-one interactions with people of all ages during a family or adult program. It's also a great way to meet other Smithies who might share interests in museums, community engagement, and doing art projects!
Work as a SME
The Student Museum Educator (SME) program works directly with K-12 students and adult learners on guided tours. In the past, this has been a volunteer role in the Museum. Beginning in 2015, it has shifted to a work-study job to reflect the high commitment of both time and effort required to become proficient as a gallery teacher. SMEs also assist with various research and administrative duties in support of the Museum's Education Department. Ongoing yearlong training focuses on developing proficiency in gallery teaching in a supportive environment. The extensive training sessions are led by Museum education staff, curators, scholars, and artists.
The Student Museum Educator Program is rewarding, but it does require a serious time commitment. It is a good supplement to four classes; if you are taking five classes, or if you have a job or other major time commitment, you may find the work load to be too much. Think carefully about your schedule.
Up to 5 Smith students are hired for this competitive position each year and open positions are listed on JobX, the student employment site.
What can these experiences do for me?
SMEs and MVPs meet other students, learn about art, have fun, and contribute to the community. They also get to meet with Museum staff and glimpse the inner workings of an active museum. It looks great on your resume for any field, whether you plan to go on to graduate school or apply for jobs. Recent program participants have landed jobs and internships at MoMA, the National Portrait Gallery, the Museum of the Moving Image, and the corporate offices of Starbucks. MVPs also receive preference for internships and jobs at the Museum.
Contact Gina Hall, Associate Educator for School and Family Programs, 413.585.2773, firstname.lastname@example.org