The deadline for NEMA scholarships is September 19!

Don’t delay – the deadline for scholarships is fast approaching!

NEMA is pleased to offer several scholarship and fellowship opportunities to make the annual conference more financially accessible. Scholarship awards support travel, lodging, and three-day registration for individual members of NEMA and employees of NEMA institutional members.

The deadline for all scholarship programs is September 19, 2014.

Only one application is necessary to apply for all scholarships and fellowships. Note: Individual opportunities have slightly differing requirements in the essay portion of the application.

You will be notified of the final award decisions in early October. In the event that your application is unsuccessful, you may still register at the early-bird rate at any time before conference.

Click here for complete details including a scholarship application form.

Help out a NEMA session by taking this survey

Do you have a few minutes to spare to help with the data behind a NEMA 2014 conference panel?

Tufts Alum Amanda Gustin is chairing a panel titled “The Graduate School Conundrum.” The panel will open with analysis of trends in museum graduate education, and in order to do that analysis we need your help!

Whether or not you have a degree, whether or not you currently have a museum job, we are hoping you’ll fill out the survey and tell us a little bit about your background and your thoughts.

Survey link:

The data will be followed by a conversational debate between Tufts program director Cynthia Robinson and museum consultant Linda Norris (of The Uncataloged Museum blog).

Here’s the official session description:

As the museum field has continued to professionalize, museum studies, public history, and other similar graduate programs seem to multiply at an exponential rate. What’s going on? We’ll present information from a 2014 survey of museum graduates & museum programs, and then continue with a conversational debate between panelists about the state, practicality, diversity, value, and future of museum studies. We will also invite questions and feedback from the audience.

Look for the results and panel discussion at the 2014 NEMA Annual Conference in Cambridge this fall! (More info on the conference at

MIT’s List Art Center needs your help this Vacation Week!

Here’s the call from Campus & Community Outreach Coordinator Courtney Klemens for volunteers to help with the List Art Center’s School Vacation Week programs. Their biggest need is Wednesday morning, but the full schedule of activities is below. If you’d like to volunteer, contact Courtney at

 Family Week at the List

Tuesday, February 18 through Friday, February 21

Full shifts: 11 to 4 pm, or, Half-shifts: 11:30 am to 1:30 pm and 1:30 to 4:30 pm)

  • Facilitate hands-on artmaking projects with children
  • Create example artworks
  • Help with clean up and set up
  • Looking for an engaging storyteller for Wednesday Feb 19
  • Free lunch!

Why blogging matters…

by editor Phillippa Pitts

This year I kicked off a new project instead of pretending to have a New Year’s Resolution. Starting 2014 was like stepping onto a roller coaster anyway: finishing up at Tufts this spring and off to who knows where in a few short months! So, like so many of us, I started a blog.

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The blog is called The Tertiary Source Project. It’s an idea that sprung out of a semester-long Proseminar project. I was working on late 19th century and early 20th century postcards and their depictions of my favorite subject — war. (Not joking, I really do specialize in the intersection of art history and war.) I expected to find myself immersed in the visual language of the time. However what emerged as the really interesting theme were the thousands of miniature histories that these cards told.

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Perspectives on NEMA 2013

by columnist Tegan Kehoe

One thing I love about NEMA is the mix of perspectives you get hearing many voices and attending multiple sessions. In a session on partnerships to meet community needs, and another on shared authority in partnerships, I learned as much from questions and discussion in the room as from the presenters. The sessions I attended on games and the one on adults and play have sort of merged in my mind, although they were conducted fairly differently. A big message in each was that it’s important to find a balance between freedom and structure, and between concepts that are familiar enough to be intuitive and new enough to be exciting. In the former two sessions, I we talked about identifying needs, what you do well, and what others bring to the table. These concepts work just as well in the latter two sessions. It’s great how so many disparate topics can be united when museum professionals come together.

This was the first conference I have devoted any real time to Twitter. The #nema2013 hashtag was lively without being overwhelmingly busy. I am sure that tweeting can be a distraction for some, but for me it’s no more distracting than taking notes (in which I sometimes go on tangents in the margins about something at school or work related to the presentation topic). I was using Twitter to connect with colleagues, but I was surprised to find that tweeting about sessions can be a very useful thought exercise. In coming up with concise restatements of a session’s biggest takeaways as it was going on, I was synthesizing and sorting information on a level and speed I rarely do. #youlearnsomethingneweveryday