"My time at IU and EIU were crucial in preparation for a role like this. By the end of my time at IU, I had worked with five different museums and historic sites, all complementing the interdisciplinary classroom education that I had received there. A couple of these museums, like Mathers and Wylie House, were IU museums, making the University all the more crucial to my current successes.
Reflecting on previous museum internships during my time at IU, I learned much more than simply how to catalog an object. As important as proper documentation might be, there are more nuances surrounding museum work that just cannot be learned in a classroom. I came to better understand the politics that surround a collection, in turn learning the amount of diplomacy that managing a collection can take." -Rachel Tavaras, IU Alumna
Rachel Tavaras majored in Anthropology and History at IU. In this interview, she talks about the career path to her current job as Collections Manager at the Museum of Miniature Houses in Carmel, Indiana.
Rachel talks with Jason Baird Jackson, who also earned his Ph.D. in the IUB Anthropology department. Now Jason is the Director of the Mathers Museum of World Cultures at IUB; he also serves on the faculty of the Department of Folklore and Ethnomusicology.
Rachel describes how her coursework prepared her to be a collections manager, giving her both theoretical and practical knowledge. Theoretical training taught her how to analyze and interpret objects using multiple approaches and perspectives. Museum Studies classes and an internship at the Mathers Museum of World Cultures gave her practical cataloguing knowledge, as well as the cultural awareness needed to know how to diplomatically manage a collection.