Melissa Ellis

Graduating Class (Year): 2019

What you are up to now?

In December of 2019, I accepted a full-time position as Assistant Exhibitions Registrar at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC.  

What led you into arts management?

As a critical museum studies student, I chose the arts management concentration because I was attracted to the multi-discipline approach to the program. I had three years full-time experience at an arts/educational non-profit when I decided to pursue an advanced degree and the arts management curriculum focused on aspects of running a non-profit that I lacked experience in. I felt it was important to have broad knowledge of different aspects of your career field.  

Most memorable experience in the Program?

The most memorable experience from the program was the 2018 Museum Advocacy Conference in Washington, D.C. This trip introduced me to advocacy and involved my own active participation in government funding efforts for museums. I was able to meet professionals in the field from all over the country who worked in different areas of the museum field. It helped me understand the importance of knowing your government representatives and how to communicate to them just how important museums are to the community. The other equally important experience I had in the program was the relationships I formed, specifically my advisor, with whose feedback and encouragement was crucial to my growth and success as a student. I am also grateful to the program for introducing me to incredibly talented classmates, to which have blossomed into lasting friendships.

What do you wish you knew then that you know now?

Don’t be shy! Check in with past supervisors and contacts from internships or volunteer work. They want to know what you’re up to and may have leads on job openings.   

Advice for current/prospective students?

Nothing is impossible if you are persistent and put in the work.

 

Melissa Ellis.
From an alum...

I had three years full-time experience at an arts/educational non-profit when I decided to pursue an advanced degree and the arts management curriculum focused on aspects of running a non-profit that I lacked experience in. I felt it was important to have broad knowledge of different aspects of your career field.