All my life, I’ve thought of teaching as an act of translation. Whether in journalism, legal, medical, or museum work, teaching can take many forms, but all involve the process of taking complex subjects and breaking them down for others to more easily understand.
Additionally, I observed early in my career that the people who learn the most from timelines, exhibits, or books, are the people who write, research, and build them. My approach to teaching, no matter whether it is on a personal or an institutional level, is built on that belief.
In the museum field, where everything we do is “for the public good,” we have to find ways to raise awareness, build skills, and understand our personal and institutional core purpose. A “core purpose” answers the question of why we do what we do. It identifies why we exist. It keeps us going when frustration and burnout take hold, or conversely, when the light shines so bright and the air is so light that our feet leave the ground.
Doing talks in galleries, classrooms, dance halls, libraries, and bookstores is great fun. I enjoy meeting a panorama of interesting people. I provide workshops on writing, historical research, and caring for family collections.
I’m happy to work with your organization to best fit a talk to your needs and interests.
Classes taught for university students include Museum Studies, Cultural Arts Administration, Methods of Museum Interpretation, Grant Writing, Museum Masterpieces, and Social Studies Methods.
I try to share what I learn through presentations at various museum conferences, including the American Alliance of Museums, National Association of Interpretation, American Association of State and Local History, and Western Museums Association.