As an intern at the Nasher Museum, I have had the opportunity to have a behind-the-scenes peek at the work required in running a successful museum. I have had the privilege to work closely with the Development department and it has certainly been an exceptional experience. When visitors admire an exhibition at the museum, they are captivated by the skillfully constructed works. What is often missed, however, is the work that has been required in bringing such beautiful works to the audience. While visitors generally pay for access to the museum, such fees hardly cover the associated costs with running it. So then you may ask, where does this money come from?
This is where the Development department comes in. The Development department is tasked with the challenging, but rewarding job of raising money for the museum and its exhibitions. They work tirelessly with donors, foundations, and grant-providing institutions in order to cover the often outsized expenses that are associated with these exhibitions.
Working with a multitude of people and managing the extensive museum mailing list is certainly not an easy feat. Consistent correspondence with the museum’s members has been essential in helping the Nasher Museum thrive. In my experience interning with this department, I have seen those working with the Nasher Museum Development team as being excellent communicators, as well as being skilled writers and planners.
Fortunately, my internship with the Development department has allowed me to interact with a variety of members of the Nasher Museum staff, ranging from curators to security staff. Each department has important responsibilities that ensure smooth operation of the museum. Although each department has individual responsibilities, they work closely together, providing a collaborative and vibrant office environment. So next time you take a look at an exhibition, hopefully you will know that there is more to the work than meets the eye.