Curiosity did not kill the cat. In my first week at the Cleveland Museum of Art, being a curious intern has helped me find my sea legs and a rhythm at work.
Asking questions about the organization’s mission, the department’s role in that mission, and how I fit into all of it has really helped me find comfort and confidence at work. This has been important for me because I have absolutely no experience in the museum world and yet I have learned that I, and all interns at all organizations, have a niche role with expertise to contribute.
I am the only intern with no Art History experience at my organization and yet this is exactly what the museum was looking for when I was interviewed. During an intern meeting (there are about 25 of us) I found out that most of the interns want to know more about the visitor’s perception and experience of the museum, which is what I bring to the table.
So ask yourselves, what do I bring to the table that is unique? How can I use my fresh eyes to inspire new ideas within my organization? The foundation for this is the role of the curious observer, which is what I was for my first week. So be curious and be confident that you have special gifts and perspectives to offer your host organizations!
Each week we use this space to give each of our interns the chance to reflect on their internship experiences. Andrew Katusin, Jr., a graduate student at Case Western Reserve University, Mandel School of Applied Social Science, is placed at the Cleveland Museum of Art.