UPDATE 2.0!! In December there were several administrative changes at the SDH, and the Interim Director asked me to step in as Interim Collections Manage and Education Coordinator. A friend of mine, Madelyne (see her awesome blog at http://www.therushoflife.com), was hired as Interim Events and Office Coordinator. In early January, we were hired as non-Interims, and now the three of us had the best time working to make great changes at the site. My new title was Director of Collections, Interpretation, and Development, and I worked on grants (applied for 3 in my first few weeks, 2 of which were awarded), getting collections in the home and storage into order, and working to improve some of the interpretation aspects of the site.
UPDATE! In the Spring of 2011, the Sam Davis Home contacted me to ask me to serve as their Interim Education Coordinator. This was a wonderful opportunity, and it was great to be back with one of the best and hardest working groups of museum workers I have ever encountered.
I was able to present educational programming to tons of school groups and summer campers, coordinate the ever-popular Days on the Farm event, and also over-see the summer camp programs offered at the site.
Additionally, I was able to take a summer class through MTSU, Advanced Project in Public History, to complete my coursework requirements while also providing a service for the Sam Davis Home. I created a disaster plan for the museum and historic home; information about this will soon be available in my Doctoral Portfolio.
And now, for more information on my time at the SDH the first time…..
During my time as an intern at the Sam Davis Home, I was responsible for guiding guests through the main house and grounds of the historic site. I also worked in the gift shop and museum as a retail associate and receptionist. In addition, I assisted the Educational Coordinator and Event Coordinator with various educational programs and events that took place throughout the year at the site.
Through this process, I learned about public history and leadership as a public historian for college credit at Middle Tennessee State University. As part of an independent study during my final semester at MTSU, I developed an education program that the staff could implement for groups that visit the Sam Davis Home. I researched the background information for this program, curriculum standards, teacher expectations, and staff expectations to complete a comprehensive program. The program, Children in the Civil War, provides teachers with activities to complete before and after their visit to the Sam Davis Home, so students gain a better understanding of the subject.
… And so began my official foray into museum education….