Write an essay where you tell us about what drives you in your pursuit of your graduate degree.

My inspiration for seeking my Masters in Museum Studies goes back to when I started volunteering in museums 14 years ago. When a friend suggested I volunteer at the St. Louis Science Center with her, I jumped at the opportunity. I soon fell in love. I loved exploring SLSC and enjoyed greeting and teaching visitors about the collections and science in general through presentations. I continued volunteering at the SLSC far after my required community service hours for high school were logged because I enjoyed the museum so much.
I found myself drawn to the Classical Humanities and Art History classes that I took as electives at the University of Missouri for my Bachelors. I soon choose Classical Humanities with a minor in Art History as my concentration, where I could still apply my love for museum work. I especially liked that this department worked closely with the Museum of Art and Archaeology on campus and its attached cast museum, which housed 19th century plaster casts of famous ancient statues. I found myself visiting these museums at least once a week to browse the collections or find objects to research for one of my many papers.
After graduation, I started volunteering at the St. Louis Zoo and the St. Louis Art Museum in order to gain more experience in different museums. It was volunteering at SLAM that finally encouraged me to apply to the Masters in Museums Studies program at JHU. Many was the time that a new visitor had only a couple of hours to visit the museum and would ask me what they just had to see. My lists were always far too extensive, I would tell them that they had to see our collection of German Expressionist art (one of the largest collections in the country), the Egyptian collection that included three mummies with their included CAT scan images, my lists would just go on and on! I soon realized how much I loved the collection at SLAM and wanted to seek a degree that would allow me to be a part of maintaining it in the future.

Elizabeth from Missouri
Johns Hopkins University