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Tennessee Holocaust Commission
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Casey Sennett

Liberal Arts Major(s): Anthropology, History, Jewish Studies
Minor: Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies
Hometown: Philipsburg, Pennsylvania
Experience Time: Summer 2020

Give us a brief summary of your experience?

This summer, I worked as the virtual Curatorial Affairs intern for the Tennessee Holocaust Commission. My work consisted of transcribing letters and documents, conducting research for upcoming exhibits and programs, and creating educational curriculum for the Commission’s current Living On exhibit. I also participated in weekly professional development workshops and had the opportunity to speak with different museum and non-profit professionals.

How did this experience impact you academically?

My work this summer allowed me to develop a deeper connection with the history of the Holocaust and survivor testimonies. While it is crucial to know the history of the Holocaust and learn about it in a classroom setting, this summer made me realize the importance of connecting the history of the Holocaust back to the testimonies of individual Holocaust victims and survivors. I will continue to take classes about the Holocaust at Penn State, but my experience this summer has encouraged me to continue to seek out individual stories that I might not necessarily learn about in class.

My internship this summer reaffirmed my passion for Holocaust education and its continued remembrance; however, the weekly professional development workshops allowed me to expand my career interests.

How will this experience impact your career goals?

Prior to this summer, I only wanted to pursue a career as a Museum Educator at a Holocaust or Jewish history museum. My internship this summer reaffirmed my passion for Holocaust education and its continued remembrance; however, the weekly professional development workshops allowed me to expand my career interests. While I am still interested in pursuing work in the field of museum education, speaking with various museum professionals this summer allowed me to realize that I can still work in museum education, but I have more career options than just as a Museum Educator.

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.)?

This summer I was supposed to be interning in Berlin, but the cancellation of that program due to COVID-19 in mid-March had me in a panic. The Career Enrichment Network, however, was able to provide guidance and advice that helped me devise a plan for applying to domestic internships. I am very appreciative of their help and encouragement, which allowed me to find this internship.

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

I am extremely grateful for the funding the Paterno Fellows program provided me. Their financial support allowed me to participate in this internship and gain such a valuable summer experience.

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