BGSU art students hailed as ‘change agents’ during internship at national art museum in Trinidad

Two Bowling Green State University art students recently had the opportunity to live and work in Trinidad during an internship at the National Museum and Art Gallery of Trinidad and Tobago where they helped to significantly impact the future care and record-keeping of the museum’s collections.

Kate Bozzo and Raven Begell-Long were the first BGSU students to complete an internship at the museum, an experience coordinated by Kenwyn Crichlow, chair of the NMAG Board, and Rebecca Skinner Green, associate professor of African art and culture and art history in the School of Art in the BGSU College of Arts and Sciences.

“Kate and Raven were change agents in the truest sense of the term,” Crichlow said. “In their short internship, they were advocates of change, doing new things, pushing ahead with ideas and practices and introducing digital procedures with an attitude that continues to inspire and influence ways of working at the National Museum and Art Gallery.”

Before the trip, Bozzo was awarded the university’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Scholarship grant and Begell-Long, an Honors College student, received the Hoskins Global Scholar Program award, which helped fund travel and living expenses abroad. Both are Northwest Ohio natives.

A reaffirming experience

Although both students are majoring in art history, they’re pursuing two distinctly different areas within the field. Bozzo aspires to work in art conservation, and Begell-Long plans to focus on cataloging, library sciences and museum studies.

The internship provided Bozzo and Begell-Long with experience in their respective areas of interest, reaffirming they are following the right career paths.

“I basically had the opportunity to work as an on-site collection management specialist, and Kate was essentially the on-site conservator,” Begell-Long said. “We had the opportunity to work within our field in positions that are so applicable to what we want to do in the future. I am so unbelievably grateful and pleasantly surprised by how much freedom we had to do these different tasks and how much responsibility we were given.”

“The experience was amazing and life-changing,” Bozzo added. “We put 100% of ourselves into this project, even before we left for Trinidad. We created our projects, got funding and once we got there, we immediately started working with the museum staff and one another to begin the actualization of our projects.”