On 25 May 2018, the first instance of NEMO Political Internships in Museums took place. MEP and member of the CULT committee, Julie Ward interned at the Bonnefantenmuseum in Maastricht, The Netherlands.
NEMO Political Internships in Museums is the first of its kind as the museum advocacy initiative is active on an European level. The aim of the initiative is to foster museum advocacy and to showcase museums’ social importance to politicians and other stakeholders. With the upcoming European elections in 2019, NEMO, want to advocate the importance of museums to politicians throughout Europe.
Julie Ward was elected to join the European Parliament on behalf of the Labour Party (UK) in 2014. NEMO approached her with the idea of interning as she is a strong advocator for education and culture. She is also active in the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament.
Ward was greeted to the half-day internship by NEMO’s Secretary General Julia Pagel, Amber Leguit from the Netherlands Museums Association and Stijn Huijts, artistic director at the Bonnefantenmuseum. The day started with an introduction to the museum and its collections by Huijts. A camera team was present throughout the day to capture Ward's work and thoughts about the internship as well as about museums in general.
After Huijts' introduction the afternoon program prepared by the Bonnefantenmuseum started and Ward got to meet the visitors when selling tickets at the entrance. She also got to answer questions from the visitors when minding the information counter and the museum shop. Later, Ward got to make a condition report in the depositary before meeting the members of the Bonnefantenmuseum's youth department, the YOUNG OFFICE. The day was wrapped up with a walk through the museum together with the security staff.
At the end of the internship Ward had received an overall understanding of the everyday life of a museum professional. NEMO hopes that the initiative NEMO Political Internships in Museums will contribute to showcasing the importance of museums and the great skills found within every part of the museum.
Read more about NEMO Political Internships in Museums here.
The press release issued on 25 May 2018 about the 1st NEMO Political Internships in Museums can be downloaded here.