Jewish Cultural Historical Museum
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Haven Harrington

Liberal Arts Major(s): Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, International Politics
Minor: German
Hometown: Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
Experience Time: Summer 2021

Give us a brief summary of your experience?

During this internship, I wrote the content for the Jewish Cultural Historical Museum's new website on the two Jewish cemeteries on the island of Curaçao. Currently, I am in the process of creating a database that will contain all of the gravesites at the previously mentioned cemeteries. Also, thanks to Penn State, I was able to travel to Willemstad, Curaçao, for two weeks to see these cemeteries in person, as well as meet my supervisors and the other intern.

How did this experience impact you academically?

This experience helped me better understand cultural differences in the world regarding religion and language. It was enriching to be immersed in a different culture and learn how social and political aspects vary from country to country. Moreover, this experience greatly impacted my writing skills. Most of my writing has been strictly academic, but creating website content helped me better understand search engine optimization. Also, being introduced to such knowledgeable writers helped me improve my own writing skills.

"This experience allowed me to gain a glimpse into what a museum related career would look like." 

How will this experience impact your career goals?

This experience allowed me to gain a glimpse into what a museum related career would look like. Pursuing an education in a history related field, I feel that it's important to learn more about museum careers, so this experience opened my eyes to the advertisement and online presence museums must hold in the 21st century. Also, my supervisor has a background in politics and international relations, which allowed me to learn more about a career in that field.

How has the College of the Liberal Arts helped you to find and/or succeed in this experience (e.g., adviser, faculty, staff, enrichment funds, etc.)?

Without being a College of the Liberal Arts student, I would never have learned about this experience. I was introduced to the internship through a friend in the Liberal Arts Ambassadors, and she was introduced to the internship through a Liberal Arts faculty member. Furthermore, the College of the Liberal Arts has helped me build upon my education to be able to succeed in this internship. Through the College, I was able to obtain a research assistant position in which I code data and create databases. This aided me in being able to take my internship a step further and create the cemetery database.

How has the Paterno Fellows Program had an impact on this experience?

The Paterno Fellows Program provided funds to allow me to have an in person component to this experience. For that, I am extremely grateful.

For more information on internships for Liberal Arts students, visit our website. 
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