The Joseph Moore Museum is blessed to have had many hard working and accomplished student workers over the years pass through its doors. As the school year ends, we are sad but excited to see our amazing workers move on with their lives’ past Earlham. This year’s Earlham seniors have not only given but also learned a lot during their tenure with the museum, and as a tribute to them those of us at the museum, LeAundre Knight (a senior himself!) interviewed our seniors to find out about their experience with the museum.
Emily McGrath has worked with the museum for the past 3 years on the Collections Team and has loved every minute of it. A Neuroscience and Ancient & Classical Studies major, Emily has loved most the people with whom she worked with and solving the challenges that came along with the collections work. Though there were difficult challenges such as determining the workflow for the museum’s new digitization and cataloging processes, Emily has loved moments like decorating Steve, our moose head between Dennis and Stanley. After graduation, Emily will work as a research assistant in a lab and is thankful to the museum for allowing her to explore her passion, allowing for hands-on experience in a research collection.
Lydia Evans has been with the museum for all 4 years of her college years, working with the Outreach Team, Fab Lab Team and also the Marketing and Communications Team Leader. She is an Environmental Studies & Psychology double major, who has loved the opportunity to interact with people from Richmond and from across campus that she otherwise would not have had a chance to meet. The most difficult challenge during her time here were preparing marketing materials for the museum’s Open Houses, but this challenge she says was nothing compared to the joy she experienced by helping with different spring break camps and outreach programs outside. “I remember taking salamander eggs to an Easter event in Richmond and the kids were simply amazed! I enjoy surprising people with the different creatures and specimens at the museum.” Lydia will be working on Tantre Farm, which is a permaculture farm in Michigan.
Anna Carlson is a Biology major and Museum Studies minor who works with the Outreach and FabLab Team, and also became the Leader of the FabLab Team. Since working with the museum as a freshman, Anna has grown more in love with the museum. She remembers vividly a time when she and a coworker read a paper in which the researchers had found that flying squirrels fluoresce pink and tested the collections specimens to find that the research was true! The most challenging experience for her has been the Pleistocene exhibit due to go up this May. Through working on this project for the past 3 years, she has developed skills from teamwork and time management to interactive and programs development. She is hoping to take these skills into a naturalist position at a zoo, wildlife park, nature center, or natural history museum.
Molly Rannebarger is a Biology major and Museum Studies minor who has been working in the Collections Team for the past 2 and a half years. To her, the Open House every year has been the most challenging experience. She says that though she is not super comfortable talking to the public and it is always stressful when there are events, it feels great to accomplish another successful Open House and to see that everyone has enjoyed their time touring the museum.
Karen Breece works with the Outreach Team and has been working with the JMM for 3 years. She is an Art History major and Museum Studies Minor who has thoroughly loved her time working with the museum. She loves the difference the museum makes throughout the community, especially the work JMM is doing to reach out to disadvantaged communities. The most challenging experience for her has been interacting with guests while balancing stress and commitments outside of the museum, but she finds it rewarding when she has the chance to interact with visitors outside of the museum who recognize her from the tours. Karen will go onto attend the IUPUI Museum Studies Master’s program.
Jacob Kempinski is a Classics major who has been with the museum for 2 years in the Outreach Team. He loves interacting with the Richmond community, and though he was initially terrified of snakes, he has grown to love them and the museum’s other reptiles. Working with the museum has given him a wide-range of skills, and he has learned about everything from the native people of the region to the natural history of reptiles. He hopes to take this knowledge into his career at a museum or educational institution.
Skylar Muckway is a History major who has worked 4 years at the JMM in the Collections Team. Skylar finds joy in interacting with colleagues at the museum and the museum’s unique bird collection. Though there have been challenging times such as: working during the Open House and interacting with lots of people, Skylar will cherish memories such as decorating Steve (our moose in Dennis), and introducing other students to the museum. Skylar will go onto law school in Rhode Island at Roger Williams University, where she will apply her independent research skills she has developed at the museum.
Julia Freeman is a Biology major and Museum Studies minor who has worked with the museum for 3 and a half years. Julia has mostly worked with the Outreach department and eventually became the Outreach Team Leader. What she loves most about the museum is the difference she is able to make in other people’s lives, and the joy kids get when they visit. The most challenging experience for her was dealing with the malfunctioning reverse osmosis system for the aquatic animals, but she has experienced much joy from things such as attending training programs to leading the Outreach Team. She still finds it amusing when kids ask her if the bear pelt hanging from the wall is alive. After graduation, Julia will move to Champaign-Urbana Illinois and work as an ecological research technician.
Cait Conley is a Geology major and they also are a member of the FabLab Team. They have worked at the museum for four yeas while also being a Bonner Scholar. Over their time at the museum, Cait has helped designed the Egypt Escape room as well as new interpretive materials for the Pleistocene exhibit.
LeAundre Knight is an Economics and International Studies double major, who works with the Marketing Team. Over his time here he enjoyed working with all the various departments to promote the museums activities to the wider Richmond community. Though the challenge of balancing school and work commitments have at times been difficult for him, he finds it rewarding when he sees all the families and community members attend the activities he helps to promote. After graduating Earlham, LeAundre hopes to work for a development bank before going onto graduate school to study Marketing and Product Development.
Georgia Tillotson works with the Outreach Team and is a Biology major. Over her four years at the museum, Georgia has loved working with as a guide for the museum’s many programs and has had the opportunity to developed her interpretive skills as a naturalist in 3 state parks. The challenge of stepping out of her comfort zone to guide visitors has led her to many rewarding experiences with the museum, most notably attending the end-of-the-year bonfires and interpreting for children and adults. Georgia will go on to do research in the Bahamas with John Iverson, and then work as a field technician with the Baucom Lab in Tennessee. Georgia considers the Joseph Moore Museum to be her lucky penny at Earlham and is glad to have found a family here.