My life as a museum novice – 6 months down, 6 to go!

With 6 months already under her belt, Ellen Pryde, our Skills for Success MGS Learner, contemplates the end of her year-long placement:


With only a few months left of my placement at the Scottish Crannog Centre, the dreaded next step of my journey is looming – job hunting.  Although I have filled out a lot of job applications in the past 10 years, this will be the first time I am really stepping into a career; one which traditionally has called for a degree in a relevant field.

But thanks to this traineeship, not only will I have a ton of work experience under my belt, I’ll have a bona fide qualification to back it all up with.  And usually when people think of vocational qualifications they think about trades – electrician, plumber etc., but nowadays there are so many options, including work in the museum sector!

It’s great to see more diversity in any job sector, helping to bring in fresh ideas and skills to situations that can’t always be taught in universities.  It also feels great to have that little bit of backup in the form of a qualification, a real tangible piece of information that ties this whole year together.

How many people can say they did all this work and got something as useful as a qualification in return?  The answer is probably not many, but it’s getting more and more possible every year thanks to programmes run by Museum Galleries Scotland and Skills Development Scotland.  So now I really need to start thinking about what I want to do when I finish – what section of museum work appeals to me the most?  I’ve done tour guiding, curatorial work, marketing and even evaluation so there are plenty of choices (which doesn’t really help when you’re indecisive like me!) but what really appeals to me is the storytelling of the whole sector – taking an object, however big or small, and telling the story of its purpose and its life.

So the good thing is that I’ll be able to accomplish that, no matter which area I end up in!