Ambitious students from around the city gathered on Friday, March 18 to receive the opportunity to learn and work for NYC’s prominent cultural institutions at “Summer in the City: A Teen Open House,” a biannual event hosted by the Metropolitan Museum of Art designed to reach out to high school students.
Organized by The Teen Programs Office at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the program gave an overview of the many internships, art, design, and film classes available in various museums around the city.
The event began with a brief exhibition of the Met’s first iPod app, “Met Guitars.” A product of the interns’ involvement with the museum, the app serves as a supplementary guide to the new exhibit, “Guitar Heroes.” The designers from the Met’s digital media department reminded everyone that working at a museum requires neither artistic experience nor complex knowledge of the arts. One presenter spoke of her experience as an intern the year before filming and editing videos for the Met, which inspired her own interest in the art.
After the presentation, students had the option of watching short features made by previous summer interns, dubbed Teen Screens, of artwork in the Met before proceeding to the museum fair.
The fair, separated from the presentation room, was organized into booths representing each institution. Each booth handed out pamphlets and summarized its agenda. Much like booth hosts at a real carnival, every host dared the passing attendees to stop, listen, and learn.
Many of the museums, including The Museum of Modern Art, the Brooklyn Museum, The Whitney Museum of American Art, El Museo Del Barrio, The Jewish Museum, The New York Historical Society, and The Rubin Museum of Art, offered internships primarily geared towards providing experience to juniors and seniors. “I really liked the concept of the Rubin Internship and how the first year they basically offer a course where you can learn about the history and the second year internship was more focused on the art. It was very informative,” said sophomore Aliya Tuzhilin. Most of the classes available, though competitive, are free, such as the programs at Cooper Hewitt and the Whitney Museum. The range of available courses spared no taste. “My favorite museum was the Jewish Museum, because I was able to introduce myself to the teen programs coordinator and [learn] about their film program,” said sophomore Annie Fan.
Some institutions also offered their own unique freebies, which represented their respective fields of expertise. Cooper Hewitt provided free sketchbooks, and the Rubin Museum of Art applied henna tattoos to eager attendees.
In all, the event, which takes place in the fall and spring, provided attendees with valuable knowledge of the great opportunities that go undiscovered by many. A joint effort by the prominent upholders of global culture in a big city, the open house ensured the possibility of an enriched summer.