For the first time, three Malone students are studying in Washington, D.C. at the same time through the American Studies Program. Throughout the semester, Suzanna Bregar, senior history major; Madi Carper, junior history major; and Kaitlyn Stump, senior history major are taking turns blogging about their experiences studying in our nation’s capital.
Every Tuesday through Thursday I get to walk right by the United States Capital and on to the National Mall. I flash my ID to the security guard to get into the National Air and Space museum before it opens. I walk to the education office, put down my things and take a deep breath. The feeling of joy and amazement I have when I walk to my internship is something that is never going to go away.
This semester in Washington is something that I will not forget. I am an intern at the National Air and Space museum. My supervisor is the Chief of Museum Learning; he works in the education department and fills a variety of roles, including being a published author.
This means that I am working in the education department of the museum. My main project is TechQuest, an alternate reality game that takes place at the Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia. The Hazy Center is the second location of the National Air and Space museum. Currently, the theme of the game is Cold War reconnaissance. It takes visitors to various artifacts around the museum that are from that time period.
This semester, my main job will be to research possible topics for the next four years of TechQuest and help gather information about each artifact used in the game for a webpage. I also get to attend meetings with curators and other museum staff. Basically, I get to live my dream.
Although classes at Malone are wonderful and interesting, a semester in D.C. is a great change of pace. I was thrown into a position where I get to see exactly what I hope to be doing for the rest of my life.
One day, I want to be working in a museum as a curator or archivist. There is a world of museum work out there that most people do not know about. There are jobs in communications, archiving, curators, exhibit design, education, and the list could go on. Through my internship, I get exposed to each of the different parts of museum work that I may not find out about otherwise.
I urge my fellow students to take every chance they have to dive into their fields of study and get as much experience as possible. Not all internships will be glamorous, but if you go in ready to learn, you are sure to benefit from it. I never thought that an internship would as fulfilling as it has been. It’s a great feeling to be able to contribute to your field of study. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be an intern at a world-renowned museum.
History is not just textbooks about dead men; it’s something that can be brought to life. I’m learning that every day at my internship at the National Air and Space museum.
Madi Carper is a junior history major.