Long-time Seacoast Science Center naturalist Nikki Annelli recently celebrated a milestone: she earned a master’s degree in Museum Studies from the Harvard Extension School in Boston. She began taking classes in the spring of 2013 and completed her degree in May of this year. Colleagues celebrated her success with a dinner at Chauncey Creek Lobster Pound in Kittery.
“I took a wide range of classes to earn my degree in Museum Studies,” Nikki explained. “The learning process involved a combination of in-person and on-line experiences, which allowed people from around the world to participate, opening up a broad spectrum of ideas. I loved the Exhibit Design classes paired with Education classes. These gave me a new perspective on how people learn and interpret things, and also illustrated how important evaluations and surveys can be.”
Some of the other classes Nikki enjoyed involved learning about museum operations. “Museums and the Law and the Business of Museums focused on issues facing museums today around the world. That was fascinating! I also took classes to learn more about Collection Management. It was thrilling to work with all kinds of important artifacts that are preserved and displayed at museums.”
During her three-year program, Nikki completed a required internship. “My internship at the Peabody Museum at Harvard allowed me to see items from the Lewis and Clark expedition and Sitting Bull’s actual headdress made of feathers!” she exclaimed “This led me to do my final project on the care of feathers in museum collections. Overall, earning this degree has been a wonderful experience, and I met and worked with some fabulous people. I look forward to bringing all that I have learned to the Seacoast Science Center!”