Jennifer Harris (MA ’02) is a Development and Communications Consultant. During her MAPH year, Jennifer focused on gender studies. Jennifer graciously took the time to answer my questions about how MAPH life and study intersect with work in development and fundraising, giving a unique perspective on how the humanities permeate what often seems more like a “corporate” world. Check out the interview below!
When I was an undergrad, I interned at a production company in Los Angeles. I answered phones, made sure the coffee pot was always full, battled daily with the copy machine, and was once awarded the great responsibility of driving to Saks Fifth Avenue to pick up not one, but three pairs of pants for Samuel L. Jackson. I mention this not to brag (although if you’re impressed, who could blame you?), but to demonstrate that what has really distinguished my experience as an intern at Browne & Miller Literary Associates is the fact that my summer here has been more rewarding, informative and valuable than I ever believed was possible in an internship. Continue reading
A Guest Post by MAPH’s 2013 IHC Intern
Lesson #1: If you don’t have time, make time.
Well, bombed that interview, I thought as I hurried out of the office. After twenty minutes with the Illinois Humanities Council’s garrulous Director of Programs & Partnerships, I felt that I had made less of an impression than a footprint on granite. Oh well, can’t worry about that now. One Quarter Pounder with Cheese and an overlong 6-bus ride later, I sprinted to the classroom where my precept group was meeting to deliver thesis presentations. It was late May, 2013, and I just did not have the time. Continue reading
I hope this post finds all of you well. I appreciate that some of you may have time to read this, as much as I appreciate that many more of you may not have such time because you are so immersed in your zealous study of those recondite things we call the humanities. Whatever your passion that has drawn you to MAPH, whether literature, philosophy, music or art history—even classics—I trust that you respect the arduous labor of clarifying your thought as a labor of great importance. Between us, this feeling is mutual. However, in my personal experience with the humanities, the relevance of tarrying with the Platonic dialogues is something I have frequent need of renegotiating for myself. What ought I to do with my now clarified, or, more often, sublimely muddled thought? In MAPH, I was guided and fortified by the notion that my philosophizing should advance some common good. Credit that notion to all of the Socratic fan-fiction I’ve read from Plato; blame the generality of that notion to me. At any rate, Maren has graciously invited me to share how my experience in MAPH challenged me to think of how humanistic inquiry has informed my AmeriCorps service. I would also like to share how MAPH challenged me to re-think the spaces in which humanistic inquiry can flourish.
At the outset of my MAPH year last September, I was confident, though not certain, that I would find myself in a year or two attending some Ph.D. program in philosophy. At the same time, I thought it peculiar that I would have spent the past five years contemplating the common good along with my dead Greek friends, Plato, Socrates, and Marx (pretty much an Aristotelian) but doing little direct service towards forming the community I had been imagining. That said, towards the middle of my MAPH year, I became more confident that I would find myself working in some social service organization, which is just what happened. Through AmeriCorps’ Catholic Volunteer Network, I now work as a caseworker for the Guardian Angel Settlement Association at Hosea House in St. Louis, Missouri. GASA’s social services site, Hosea House, provides emergency assistance for persons and families in crisis who may need food, clothing, utilities or rental assistance. Hosea House also partners with other agencies to offer seasonal, public health, senior and back to school programs.
Every year a handful of students choose the Cultural Policy Option of the MAPH program. Jane Hanna writes about her experience in MAPH, the Cultural Policy and her really cool job at the Field Museum.
How were you involved in the Cultural Policy Center?
I worked as a Graduate Research Assistant in CPC while I completed the Master of Arts Program in the Humanities in 2010-11. As a MAPH student, I chose the Cultural Policy option, and much of my coursework was taken at the Harris School and Law School. I was looking for an academic program which would allow me to have an interdisciplinary focus, combining my interest in the arts and humanities with my career experience in marketing, and assist me in my aspirations towards a career in museum administration. I’m also a technologist and gamer and my research areas included mobile and social media and the ways in which these complicate traditional museum exhibition, education, and marketing strategies. At CPC, I helped with the preparations for the CultureLab Emerging Practice Seminar 2011, which was focused in part on engaging arts audiences through the use of technology.
Additionally, I was involved with the lunchtime workshop series as both an employee of CPC and an enthusiastic attendee. After graduating, I also participated in the marvelous Future of the City: The Arts Symposium by virtue of my association with CPC. Betty Farrell served as my supervisor as well as my thesis advisor and professor.
What do you do now?
I am the Social Media Strategist for The Field Museum of Natural History here in Chicago. In this capacity, I am responsible for maintaining a broad and ever-growing portfolio of social media pages for the Museum, including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, FourSquare, Flickr, YouTube, Vimeo, Yelp, and many more. I work closely with the scientific staff to develop engaging content that educates and entertains our digital community of fans and supporters.
I also deliver up-to-the-minute news about exhibitions, educational programs, special events, and promotions to the public several times per day, seven days per week. I monitor and evaluate the performance of these pages using Google Analytics and other tracking tools, and continually look for short- and long-term ways through which the Museum can leverage these properties for various strategic purposes. I think I have one of the best jobs at the Field not only because I am uniquely positioned to collaborate with staff working in all of the Museum’s departments, but also because I spend a large portion of my time interacting with our enthusiastic public, answering their questions, inviting them to participate in dialogues and citizen scientist activities, and learning valuable insights from their feedback.
In partnership with CAPS, this week MAPH is starting to take applications for its Externship Program. Thanks to the volunteer efforts of four MAPH alumni, our students will have the opportunity to stop in for one-day to see what the whole “work” thing is about at Aon Corporation, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Cook County Circuit Court, and Open Books.
Thanks to Maggie Berndt, Beth Gallagher, Beth Morris, and Anna Piepmeyer for offering to take some time out of their busy schedules to host students! We are hoping to continue to expand the program in the future by reaching out to more of our growing population (1400 strong) of alumni in Chicago and around the country. I’d love to have 10 or more opportunities for students next year.
If you’re interested in learning more about the way we have been changing career programming this year, or if you have an awesome job and want to be profiled on AfterMAPH, drop a line to email@example.com.
The job hunt can be a tiresome and trying experience, especially in this economic climate. I thought I would share a success story with you to brighten your day! MAPH alum Alan Kellner has just landed a fantastic job as a Writer/Researcher at Zimmerman LLC, whose core focus is “centered on the research of best practices and education pertaining to the most pressing Revenue Cycle issues for hospitals across the nation.” Alan has agreed to share some of his insights into the job hunt with us. Take a look at his posting below!
Alan’s tips on finding a job:
MAPH Alum Kristin Scott shares her very insightful advice on how to get your foot in the door when applying for teaching positions. Thanks Kristin!
Some advice for new MAPH graduates and those looking for their first teaching positions:
Over the last couple of years, I’ve had a few folks come my way asking about how to get their foot in that often hard-to-open teaching door. Continue reading
One of our goals with the afterMAPH is to be a forum for our alums to talk about what they do, and carry on some of the kinds of conversations they began at MAPH. In that spirit I present this post by our guest author Kristin Scott. Kristin Scott is a MAPH alum currently teaching at Columbia College.
Speaking of blogs . . . I am very interested to hear from those of you who teach and have been utilizing various forms of technology within your pedagogy. When I first started teaching at Columbia College Chicago (English & Cultural Studies Departments) a bit over three years ago, I was fairly unsure of how to incorporate technology into the classroom and admittedly a bit hesitant to do so. I didn’t want to “dumb down” the curriculum by turning to popular media/technological tools or use them as some crutch for effective teaching. Continue reading
Spend way too much time on careerbuilder.com and idealist.org? Getting stircrazy and wondering if you’ll ever find a job? Never fear! Lesley Lundeen, our superhero at CAPS (Career Advising and Planning Services), has done us the great favor of responding to our questions about what to do in this sort of situation. Read on below to get her advice. (Hollaback to this post if you have any advice or strategies of your own!) Continue reading