Jennifer Hochuli, a student pursuing her M.A. in Museum Professions, a graduate program within the College of Communication and the Arts, currently works at the Intrepid, Sea, Air, and Space Museum in New York City as a full time tour guide. Her desire to further her career led her to an internship at the Long Island Museum of American Art, History and Carriages. Hochuli's job, internship, and experience at Seton Hall have given her the tools to succeed in developing her museum career.
Hochuli, a Dean's Graduate Scholarship recipient, and a museum education student, knew since a young age that the museum field was her calling. Even before starting at Seton Hall, she found a part-time job as a tour guide at the Intrepid, Sea, Air and Space Museum in Manhattan. She found success at the museum, and in just six months, she was promoted to a full-time tour guide position.
Hochuli studied information about the Intrepid for months before officially becoming a tour guide. Once approved as a guide, she learned to create inviting tours for people of all ages. "I think one of the most important skills that I am developing and improving upon at the Intrepid is the ability to take information and adapt it to multiple audiences," Hochuli explained. "In working with hundreds of visitors a day, I am learning how to better accommodate visitors' needs and interests. I truly believe that the experience will be incredibly valuable as I move forward in the museum field."
Last summer, Hochuli decided to further advance her professional career skills through an internship at the Long Island Museum of American Art, History, and Carriages in Stony Brook, New York. As an intern, Hochuli administered and analyzed surveys designed to evaluate the institution's programming.
Hochuli shared that her graduate coursework prepared her for this project. "Analyzing survey results allowed me to put to test the skills I learned in the course, Audience Research and Project Evaluation," she noted. "I originally intended to only work briefly with the evaluations before switching to another project, but I began to really enjoy the work and saw that there was a need for evaluation elsewhere in the museum. With this new primary project, I analyzed multiple surveys including one from a conference held last spring and an ongoing survey about the museum's existing exhibitions. I also created surveys the museum can use to evaluate programs in the future."
Similar to her work at the Intrepid, Hochuli's internship helped her develop professional skills for the museum field. "Thanks to this internship, I gained deeper insights into how museums operate" she said. "As a fairly small museum, I had the chance to see how different departments work with each other, and by assisting with educational programs, I gained a better understanding of what is involved when serving the needs of different groups."
Hochuli offers some advice to fellow students looking to develop their careers through jobs and internships. "Do not be afraid to be flexible. I think it is important to have your mind set on a goal; however, by keeping an open mind, you might discover a new passion or direction."
The M.A. in Museum Professions is designed for individuals interested in pursuing careers in museums or related cultural institutions. Students in the program select one of four professional tracks, including Museum Education, Museum Registration, Museum Management, or Exhibition Development. All students in the M.A. in Museum Professions program complete an internship for credit. A dedicated internship supervisor assists with placement and an internship directory is available to students.
The College currently offers three Master's-level programs, including Museum Professions, Strategic Communication, and Public Relations. In addition, four dual-degree options, including three accelerated B.A./M.A. programs and a dual M.A. degree with the School of Diplomacy and International Relations are offered.
Categories: Arts and Culture