Gretchen Halverson *16
Social Media Assistant, Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia)
Gretchen Halverson currently works at the Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia) in the Department of Media and Technology. Prior to gaining full-time employment, she spent her summer interning in the Department of Curatorial Affairs working on many digital initiatives including the Living Rooms Initiative, which is focused on reinvigorating the period rooms through innovative and inclusive interpretation. She continues to support the development of innovative technologies within the museum space in her current role in various capacities including content development and research, user experience testing and analysis, and project management.
Prior to completing the M.A. program at UMass, she became increasingly interested in the use of digital tools in museums after planning the graduate symposium, “Plugged In: Art in the Digital Age” as well as her fellowship at Hampshire College’s Institute for Curatorial Practice. These opportunities allowed her to explore the use of technology in the field and the ways in which it can support an inclusive museum environment.
The Department of the History of Art and Architecture’s rigorous M.A. program prepared her for a career in the arts in many ways. Major and minor requirements helped to support a broad knowledge of art history. Additionally, a required methods course, while challenging, equips students with the tools to approach further coursework and analysis. Gretchen also had the opportunity to act as a teaching assistant during her time which provided her with valuable teaching experience and inspired her to want to share her art history knowledge with others. UMass’s expert faculty are not only engaging in their approach to teaching, they open their doors to students providing one-on-one support and guidance both during and after the program. It is clear that they are committed to their student’s success and also the field by contributing exceptional scholarship.