Jorge Sarmiento: Estoy realizando las prácticas en la galería de arte Rocío Santa Cruz. Desde el primer momento me han acogido como a uno más y estoy viviendo de primera mano cómo una empresa cultural se enfrenta a esta difícil situación que estamos atravesando.
How was the selection process to get your current Internship?
After doing some research about the companies I would like to work for, I’ve sent some few e-mails with my resume and cover letter in order to look for my first internship during the Master. One of the responses was from MEAM, and they wanted to have an interview with me. The week after, I was in the museum’s patio waiting for my actual supervisor to do my first interview in Barcelona. When she arrived, she started talking in Catalan and I had no idea what she was saying to me, but she soon understood I was lost and kindly switched to Spanish. After having asked me about previous experiences and about my interests, she told me I could get the internship because they needed someone to help them with the daily tasks and my profile seemed to be what they were looking for. They had already had interns from UIC and to do the paperwork was easy and fast.
What are your current role and main tasks?
I mainly work in the office, so most of the time I am doing administrative tasks like preparing the orders online (catalogues and books) and shipping them, answering emails, as well as monitoring the tickets ordered through the tourism offices spread around Barcelona. Going to the bank, buying supply for the cafeteria and staying in the box office are also some of my tasks for the internship. I have witnessed so far two changes of exhibitions and these are the moments when all the museum gets very busy, and I used to help receiving the paintings, placing them, finding the reference into the blueprints and naming them with the sign on the wall. I have also participated in some events organized by the MEAM like blues concerts, classical music concerts and press conferences, where I helped to prepare the stage, host the visitors and support the activities. Other tasks included different kinds of translations, such as texts for the catalogues, musical programs, exhibitions and also helping with the emails and phone calls that required English, French or Portuguese. Finally, I also do the clipping for the museum, collecting and organizing every offline and online media that is being written about the museum.
What do you like the most of your internship?
I ended up liking the most what I disliked at the beginning: doing several different tasks. When I started I wanted to be part of a single project and develop it deeply, but I think that it was much more important to me and my professional career to have an overview of everything that is going on, participating in different tasks and circulating in all the subdivisions of the museum. After having this panoramic view of activities, I think what I like the most is the realization of concerts and events, receiving people, and listening to good music, of course… And also the team I work with, they were very welcoming since the beginning and it really made the difference on the daily basis!
Would you recommend other students to do internships? Why?
Totally! If you are interested in museology and understanding the processes needed to set up an exhibition, getting in contact with artists, having a dynamic experience, you would definitely like working for MEAM. The museum is beautiful, and there are always lots of activities that you can help supporting and getting involved. The people you will work with are very sweet and supportive, which is something essential!
Which advice would you give to students who are looking for an internship?
First, be curious and search for the internships by yourself. Lots of companies are not openly searching for interns but they might be needing them! Then, do not consider the internships only as an end in itself, but for the doors it can open to you, like networking, building new skills and other opportunities! Try to make the most of each thing you do, learning, observing, asking, and you will learn much more than you think!