The Art Department has launched a certificate program in museum education as a supplement to the college’s art history master’s degree program. According to research compiled by the Art Department while preparing the program, there are currently only six other institutions worldwide that offer programs in museum education, and none of them are combined with art history.

“We were talking about areas where our students could get jobs,” says Maria Ann Conelli ’80, dean of the School of Visual, Media and Performing Arts. “Having hired many people as curators, I knew that it would be great to provide students with a master’s in art history with this additional certification.”

The 12-credit program began this past winter intersession, with Conelli teaching the first seminar course. Conelli, previously the executive director of the American Folk Art Museum, says that conversations about the program were inspired by meetings with art historians at museums.

Participating students must already have, or be working toward, a master’s degree in art history. The program includes two seminar courses and two museum internships.

“This just made sense for me,” says Danielle Hillanbrand, who is working on a master’s degree in art history and chose Brooklyn College specifically because of the new certificate program. “I think the role of museum educator is extremely important. Art teaches kids critical thinking, empathy, and all these things that are important.”

Many of the class sessions take place in museums throughout New York City.

“We’re making these on-the-ground contacts that will set us apart in a sea of applications,” she says.