This story begins in a little coffee shop in Urbana, Illinois, where I paired my first day as an intern at the Escalette Collection (in Wilkinson College) with a blackberry latte and a croissant. I opened Jessica Bocinski’s e-mail attached with my official 10-week internship program. Seeing the program she curated just for me, I was filled with anticipation toward the 10 weeks of dipping my toes in various areas of museum work. This all began with Jessica, Registrar of the Escalette Collection, giving my Art & Activism class a tour of the This Land is Your Land exhibition in Roosevelt Hall.
I had recently discovered my passion for museums, especially art museums. I was taking a Museum Studies course and an Art & Activism course within my CCI (Creative and Cultural Industries) minor during that spring semester. Through these classes, I got multiple opportunities to interact with the Escalette Collection, including tours of their exhibitions and submitting Panther Perspectives. After my second tour with Jessica, I nervously approached her with questions about the collection. I was intrigued by the concept of a “museum without walls” that challenged the notion of what a museum could be. My summer was looking a little bland, so I wanted to add some spice by seeing more art. A summer internship with the Escalette Collection sounded perfect.