Author Archives: Bree Midavaine

State Council of Churches and Wrap-Up

I want to put in a quick plug for the collection that I just finished…on my LAST day of my internship here at the Burke Archives.  Then I'll do a little wrap up of my time here and what I learned.

WAB: State Council of Churches Records, 1943 – 1974
Abstract
: Regional ecumenical and interfaith organizations come together under the umbrella of their respective state council of churches.  Rooted in local communities they are able to respond to needs specific to that region.  These councils are agencies of cooperation focused on service and Christian unity. Collection contains bulletins, magazines, newspapers, pamphlets, correspondence, annual meeting minutes and reports.

Collection Scope and Content Note: The majority of the collection is comprised of state council bulletins or newsletters and annual state council meetings.  New York, Ohio, Massachusetts and New Jersey form the bulk of the collection.  Of note within the New York collection is a smaller collection pertaining to the New York City Protestant council, which was a large regional council serving the local needs of the city.  The Ohio collection is a large run of the Ohio Christian News dating from 1946 to 1971.  The Massachusetts collection also contains a large run of the state council’s newsletter Christian Outlook and copies of annual reports.  The New Jersey collection contains reports of its annual meetings from 1958 to 1974.  Michigan is contained in block parenthesis because the state was inferred from locale information contained in the annual meeting report. The collection is arranged alphabetically according to state.  Within the state divisions, state councils are organized first with county, regional and city councils following.  Each folder is arranged alphabetically and the materials within those folders are arranged chronologically.  Other state councils in the collection include Alabama, California – Nevada, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Maine, Minnesota, Oregon, Texas, Vermont, Virginia and Washington.

Wrap Up!

My final day at the Burke has arrived.  My time here has gone by amazingly fast and I am surprised with the fact that I was able to complete the processing  and DAM on four collections.  Granted one collection contained a single book, but it still feels good to have some experience under my belt.  So did I accomplish what I hoped to accomplish, was the experience all that I had hoped it would be?  Absolutely! This was definitely the place where I could test my theoretical knowledge of archival processing by putting it into practice.  The mundane tasks of sorting, discarding, re-housing and labeling are no longer intimidating mysteries.  Not surprisingly, considering my love of organization, those mundane tasks were some of my favorite activities.  Thankfully, I encountered no bugs and only a little bit of dirt and dust. I was able to shift my focus from item level description to box and folder description and adhere to the “More Product Less Process” standard.  I gradually figured out how to limit my tendency to be verbose in regards to my historical notes and scope and contents notes.  While I’m not perfect and still  have a difficult time using sentence fragments in the abstract, I am much better at it than when I started.  It’s nice to see less and less corrective red from Brigette on them.  I even enjoyed being able to put my long dormant historian training to use while I was researching historical and biographical information regarding the collections. 

Learning how to do archival processing, while important, was not my only goal.  I wanted to learn and experience a way to make internships not only benefit the institutions, but teach students life-long lessons.  My final paper for my Practicum focuses on the need for constructionist and constructivist based learning as a way to engage students more actively in the learning process.  Both methods encourage students to actively interact and create within and with the physical world rather than passively receiving knowledge; however constructionism additionally requires the production of a tangible object in the final outcome.  Learning becomes more than knowledge acquisition and becomes a process of identity formation and empowerment.   Mentors, supervisors, and teachers who use these approaches make it easier for students to see their work not only as personally enriching but also of value to the community they are serving.  As such, new knowledge is not only more effectively embedded in the students mind, but the students become embedded in the community they serve.

I’m only using this high flung academic-speak to illustrate that Brigette uses these approaches to teaching archival practice and processing.  I did not just create finding aids, but I made them available online increasing access, spoke about their relevance in various blog entries, posted information regarding the new collections on Twitter and Facebook, I was even informed one of the collections was given to me because a user had requested the material and the library wanted to accommodate the request in a timely manner.  I did not just learn archival theory or just the do’s and don’ts of archival processing, but I created a tangible object that tied me to a community of archivists and archives users.  Eventually I began to describe myself as an archivist when asked what I do.  I am no longer just a library graduate student, but because of what I was able to accomplish I now identify with being an archivist.  I no longer limit my job searches to special collections or museum libraries. It was great to see this teaching method in action and see the personal affect it had on me.  

If you are still on the fence regarding archives, if you don’t have a clue what to do in an archive, even if you love them I would recommend coming here for an internship and becoming part of the archivist community.  It was a great experience!

Federal Council of Churches and the Bethlehem Steel Strike of 1910

While working on the Federal Council of Churches in America Records collection it is not surprising (considering my American Studies background) that I found the materials relating to the Bethlehem Steel strike of 1910 the most interesting.  The materials comprise an almost minuscule portion of the collection; only one folder, but I love primary source documents and I love figuring out their relationship to the history they are involved in.  It is easy to get distracted while processing a collection on the items that we as archivists personally find interesting, so instead of letting my research only enlighten myself I thought I would write a little bit about the strike and its relation to the papers in our collection.

“At its founding in 1908 the Federal Council [of Churches (FCC)] issued its ‘Social Creed of the Churches.’  This statement on the social responsibility of Christians marked only the beginning of FCC’s work in this field.  The FCC stood behind such issues as worker’s rights to organize or shorter working hours for American labor.”   It is a striking coincidence that the official formation of the FCC  in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania coincided with John Andrews Fitch famous sociological study of the working conditions of the steel workers industry (1907-1908)  in the other major city in Pennsylvania: Pittsburgh.  The steel industry employed almost 80,000 workers in the city and virtually controlled social and civic life.  Fitch spent those two years observing steel workers on the job.  He examined the health problems and accidents which resulted from the pressure of long hours, hazardous machinery, and speed-ups in production.  He also analyzed the early experiments in welfare capitalism, such as accident prevention and compensation and pensions.  His book The Steel Workers was published in 1910 the same year as the Bethlehem Steel Strike.  It is interesting to note that included among the papers in the FCC collection are letters of correspondence between John A. Fitch, who was writing an article on the Bethlehem Strike for “The Survey” and Rev. Francis S. Hort, pastor of the First Presbyterian Church and member of the Ministerial Association in Bethlehem. 


The strike began on February 4, 1910 and lasted 108 days.  The workers main grievances revolved around low pay and long hours.  They wanted Bethlehem Steel Co. owner Charles M. Schwab to agree to give them Sundays off and to raise the laborers’ pay of 12 cents an hour.  They also wanted a change in the “bonus system,” which paid skilled workers so little it forced them to work overtime.  After almost a month of striking Schwab still refused to meet the demands and called in the police instead, resulting in a riot after police charged into a crowd of bystanders beating men, women and children.  Although the riot galvanized the striking workers for a little while to remain on strike as they attempted to get support from local clergy and national organizations, by early May only a fraction of the almost 9000 men originally involved remained on strike.  The U. S. Bureau of Labor began an investigation on March 17 of the Bethlehem strike and on May 4 released its report, which is also located in this collection.   It concluded that “over 97 percent of the work force had a work day of 10 hours, and 51 percent worked 12 hours or more. Twenty nine percent of the men worked seven-day weeks with no extra pay for Sunday work.”  Unfortunately the report had little effect on changing Schwab’s mind, he allowed the men back to work, but made no changes to the working conditions or the worker's wages. 

The FCC’s involvement in the strike was to conduct a survey of the situation after the strike was officially over.  Under the direction of Dr. Josiah Strong; social reformer, proponent of the social gospel and chairman of the Social Services Commission, the survey was done to determine how best the FCC could serve the steel workers.  The survey of the Social Services Commission was not necessarily met with open arms. The FCC collection contains a letter to Josiah Strong and others on the Commission, from  the leaders of the Ministerial Association of Bethlehem, Rev. Francis S. Hort, Rev. Paul de Schweinitz and Rev. G. Schwede.  They state, “The recent strike has been settled.  The remainder of the men, who held out until the final adjustment, have just returned to work.  It appears to us most inopportune and untimely to stir up the whole matter again.  Had your proposition come at the time of the investigation by the Commissioner of Labor, or during the strike period, such an investigation might have been helpful.”  They feared that after four months of “bitter contest” and peaceful relations restored, because there had been no real resolution that the Commission led by Dr. Strong would stir up those bitter feelings again and do more damage than good. 

The Commission proceeded with the survey, thankfully hostilities were not renewed, but the recommendations of the Commission to the FCC would encourage them to become more involved in labor issues and help fight for better working conditions.  The beginnings of this are born out in a letter dated June 10, 1910 from Charles Stelzle secretary of the Commission on the Church and Social Service in which he recommends to the Ministers Association, “the observance of a Labor Sunday on September 4th…and that various ministers preach sermons appropriate to the occasion…”  According to Resolution No. 122 of the Toronto Federation of Labor Convention, as part of Labor Sunday “the churches in America be requested to devote some part of this day to a presentation of the labor question.”  As a result of the survey the FCC concluded that all Christian denominations should advocate for a higher living wage, passage of Sunday labor laws, reduction of the hours of labor, safe working conditions, an end to child labor, and provision for the old age workers and those incapacitated by injury.


Primary source documents mentioned and photographed in this post are contained in a single folder in the FCC Records collection.  (Box 2, Folder 3).

Other sources used are:

           Fitch, John Andrews, and Russell Sage Foundation Charities Publication Committee. The   Steel Workers. Charities Publication Committee, 1911. Web. 23 Oct. 2012.

           Presbyterian Historical Society. “Federal Council of the Churches of Christ in America Records, 1894-1952.” Web. 22 Oct. 2012.

           Whelan, Frank. “Steel Strike Of 1910 Wrote Bitter Chapter In Labor History.” The Morning Call: Lehigh Valley’s Newspaper. 10 Mar. 1985. Web. 4 Dec. 2012.

Conviction Born From Struggle and Conversion

MRL 3: Arunodaya: The Autobiography of Bãbã Padamanjí, box 1, and folder 1,
The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York

When I was first given the very small collection of Bãbã Padamanjí (so small in fact, that it only contains one book), to process I wasn’t sure if I would find much information about a Hindu man born in May 1831 in Belgaum, India.  I was sure that my history of Bãbã would be limited to what I found in the handwritten translation of his autobiography Arunodaya (which means light or dawn in Marathi).  I was pleasantly surprised to find that I was able to find much more information than I expected for someone who I assumed might have been overlooked by history. Bãbã Padamanjí was a man that by the time of his death in 1906 was responsible for over 70 texts in his native Marathi and also in English, which ranged from Christian tracts that were either written or translated by him to Marathi dictionaries.  He was a man that was dedicated and praised for the conviction of his faith.

MRL 3: The Autobiography of Bãbã Padamanjí, box 1, and folder 1,
The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York

 Bãbã Padamanjí was able to overcome struggles with caste, former religious and pagan practices, family and friends in his journey to become a Christian man in India.  The handwritten translation of his Autobiography in our collection chronicles and gives insight into those particular struggles. I came across numerous sources that discussed how difficult it was to change religions in the caste system of India at the time that Bãbã Padamanjí was struggling with his new found faith.  One source I looked at, Stitches on Time was a collection of social anthropology essays, one of which detailed reasons why these difficulties existed.  Saurabh Dube summarized that “a nation cannot be exorcised from history through the mere expedient of turning our backs on its standardized past and monumental present.”  This is also detailed in a note written for My Struggle for Freedom, (another edited version Arunodaya) the editor Rev. M. P. Davis states, “In a time when changing religion or political belief resulted in a loss of home and family.  [His] story reveals the great advance made in this respect.”

MRL 3: The Autobiography of Bãbã Padamanjí, box 1, and folder 1,
The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York

Bãbã's struggles are evidence as he tells the story of his conversion.  His family was “orthodox and religious minded” and he learned all of the worship ceremonies “from [his] mother’s religious observances.”  These religious observances were mixed with pagan practices such as relying on astrologers, sorcerers, and wizards for “oblations, magic antidotes and the muttering of spells.”  Witches were also brought into the house when the men were gone and he experimented with the “incantations of witchcraft taught by them.”  He admitted to wanting to learn magic spells with “the object of attaining divine power.” His conversion to Christianity was a long process beginning when he was a child and while it was difficult to stop these practices, he was eventually able to overcome them.  He credits the teachings of Christianity with this.  In fact Bãbã states that he writes of these experiences to tell others that “the plan of God made it clear to me…that there is no power in Hinduism to keeps its followers from immoral behaviour [sic]…the fraction of love and peace which is found in the Hindu families is the fruit of their thought, good nature, wisdom, and of reading books of advice of saints; it is not the product of idol worship, muttering of magic spells, vows and fasts…etc.”

His family was of the Kasars caste and prominent.  It was difficult to break with the caste, which was one of the first steps to becoming Christian; once he realized that was something he felt he wanted to do.  He first broke with the caste in secret, with others of like minds in a meeting of the Paramhans Society.  He thought he might not feel as guilty if no one else knew what he had done.  However, he soon became “haunted” in his mind because he was lost to family, “thrown out of the caste (excommunicated);” he felt that all people would call him “polluted.”  This was not the end to his troubles for a man came to meetings, took the vow of secrecy and then revealed the names and the goals of the men there.  “There was great agitation…” his parents like many others took him out of the Mission School and many criticisms were published in the newspapers. 

As his family learned of his desire to become Christian they grew angry.  His father told him “To become a Christian was to him to become polluted and sink to the lowest level.”  His uncle advised his father to disown him, to take away his jobs and money and to encourage others to shun Bãbã in this way as well.  Bãbã felt “in this way I was surrounded and pressed upon from all sides by my own people and the people outside.”  So much so that he vacillated between wanting to run away and poisoning himself.  He eventually set upon expressing his conviction to his father, who even though he felt it would bring great disgrace on the family, realized that Bãbã’s conviction was true and agreed to let Bãbã “have freedom in matters concerning religion.”  His father never followed the advice of the uncle and eventually requested that  his son teach him this religion Bãbã thought was true.

Bãbã Padamanjí said, “It is needless to say what opposition has to be met by one who has to contemplate on an important subject like religion and has to discern as to which things have to be retained or rejected and especially by a man who practices them…we understand how a Hindu (and men of other religions too) has to struggle with hindrances and suffer sorrow, if he desires to become a Christian.”  It is evident throughout the subsequent years following his baptism that once those hindrances and sorrows were overcome Bãbã was able to do what he enjoyed most, write Christian tracts and translations in order to educate other Hindus on what he felt was a more true and enlightened path. 

MRL 3: The Autobiography of Bãbã Padamanjí, box 1, and folder 1,
The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York

Even though I was able to find more information about Bãbã Padamanjí than I thought I was going to, that material is not a large amount.  I am happy that the Burke Library Archives now has been able to add just a little bit more to the history of Bãbã and I that I got a chance to briefly spend some time getting to know him. 

Sources include quotes from Bãbã himself as written in Arunodaya, as well as these other sources:

  • Dube, Saurabh. Stitches on Time: Colonial Textures and Postcolonial Tangles. Durham: Duke University Press, 2004.
  • Padamanjí, Bãbã. My Struggle for Freedom: The Autobiography of Bãbã Padamanjí. Raipur, C.P. [India]: Christian Book Depot, 1944. Burke Call Number: MRL Pamphlets 1830

Unity in the Midst of Diversity

I have finished processing my very first ever archival collection, the American Bilateral Conversations Records in the William Adams Brown Ecumenical Archives Group.  When I started I didn’t have much of an idea of what most of that meant.  I had no idea what a bilateral conversation entailed and I was only faintly familiar with what ecumenical meant.  I have to say this; previous to processing this collection I was on the fence about whether or not I would like to be an archivist.  I knew that there would be things that I would like, but would they seem less enjoyable when faced with the downside, the dirty and the buggy (I’m not a huge fan of bugs)?   The answer is “Yes!  I’m hooked!”  I can deal with the mess and the dirt (and bugs) because I get to do all the things that I love.  Namely, organize, label, research and then make it accessible for others to use. It is the last one that gives me the most amount of satisfaction.  Now others will be able use this collection and hopefully it will lead them to new understandings and new connections that didn’t exist before. 

On the downside I spent 3 weeks inventorying and organizing the collection.  I felt that this was a little too long for the size of collection I had, but I have to keep in mind that I’m only there for 10 hours a week and it is my first time.  I need to squelch the urge to do item level description; I feel this is my biggest hurdle to get over.  The cataloger in me just wants to describe every little thing.  I was also nervous about having to write a history about something I knew so little about and I’m a bit anxious about doing it right.  I love to do research and I am truly interested in this topic, so much so that I would find myself distracted by some of the papers that were written for consideration at these ecumenical conferences.  I am impressed with the sentiments and recognition of the necessity of unity within all members of the church everywhere.  I took pictures of a few of the statements I found while I was sorting through the material, so that I would have examples of some of the quotes I liked and to show what the papers look like.  When reading the quotes keep in mind most of these papers were written in the late 60s.  (NOTE: I have “retouched” the papers in the photographs to get rid of the text that doesn’t apply to what I’m talking about; I didn’t want the distraction of other portions of the text in the photograph.  All of these papers can be viewed in their entirety by following the citations underneath the pictures.)

Hanlon

Daniel J. O’Hanlon, S. J. “The Ministry and Order of the Church” Credit to
WAB: American Bilateral Conversations Records, Series 1, Box 4, Folder 16, The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York.

I like the simple realization that what these church leaders were attempting to do wasn’t easy, but that division is a problem worth trying to fix.  I love Glenn E. Baumann’s statement about the right to worship within inter Christian marriages.  Following Baumann's quote, Monsignor Henry G. J. Beck had similar desire for unity rather than division on this same topic.


Glenn E. Baumann, “The Churches and Their Attitudes Toward Inter Christian Marriages “
Credit to WAB: American Bilateral Conversations Records, Series 1, Box 5, Folder 2, The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York.


Monsignor Henry G. J. Beck, “Proposed Pastoral Guidelines for Inter-Christian Marriages”
Credit to WAB: American Bilateral Conversations Records, Series 1, Box 5, Folder 2, The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York.

I grabbed this one from a paper about the ordination of women because I liked the corrections that were penciled in.  I don’t know if you can read the words that are “carroted” in at the end but it says, “respond creatively to…” It is obvious that unity in all aspects was a difficult task.


Unknown, “The Ordination of Women”
Credit to WAB: American Bilateral Conversations Records, Series 1, Box 5, Folder 4, The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York.

This last quote by Robert McAfee Brown I just like.  I thought it was an interesting way to regard the study of the New Testament.

Robert McAfee Brown “Order and Ministry in the Reformed Tradition”
Credit to WAB: American Bilateral Conversations Records, Series 1, Box 4, Folder 16, The Burke Library Archives, Columbia University Libraries, at Union Theological Seminary, New York.

It is a fascinating topic and relevant even today, as ecumenical discussions are still on going. Some of the topics remain the same and some of the topics are new, but the idea behind unity in the church is still a driving force.  It was fascinating to discover that this tiny collection covers a very important era in the world wide ecumenical movement.  The collection mainly deals with Roman Catholic bilateral conversations; I learned it was in the early 60s; after Vatican II, the Roman Catholic Church came into full involvement in the ecumenical movement, (which began at the World Missionary Conference in 1910 at Edinburgh.)  In fact, there was a recent New York Times Op-Ed article, "Opening the Church to the World," which discusses the effects Vatican II had on the international ecumenical relationships of the Roman Catholic Church. 

It is also interesting to note that the Roman Catholic Church tended to favor and encourage a methodology of bilateral or two-party conversations, while most ecumenical discussions were multilateral.  In one of the books that I used to research the history of the ecumenical movement, the editor, John A. Radano recommended “more analysis of these dialogue reports, and accounts of what they have achieved are needed…” The scope of this collection reflects this pivotal point in the history of the modern ecumenical collection and I am happy to add a new collection to canon of ecumenical records to help in that analysis.

Sources:

O’Malley, John W. “Vatican II Opened the Church to the World.” The New York Times 10 Oct. 2012. Accessed: 15 Oct. 2012.

Radano, John A. Editor. Celebrating a Century of Ecumenism: Exploring the Achievements of International Dialogue: In Commemoration of the Centenary of the 1910 Edinburgh World Missionary Conference. Grand Rapids, Mich: W.B. Eerdmans Pub. Co, 2012.

Internship for the Uninitiated Archivist

Being one of the new fall interns here at the Burke Library, one of my first assignments is to write a blurb for the blog about my expectations for my upcoming semester.  I am in my final year as a graduate student at Pratt Institute’s School of Information and Library Science, from which I will earn certificates in Archives, as well as Museum Libraries.  (Additionally, I am also matriculated into Pratt Institute’s History of Art Master’s degree, but I won’t finish that for another few years.)  Each student who is interested in gaining an Archives or Museum Libraries Certificate must finish a Practicum course.  The course requires 100 hours of on-site work experience supervised by an information professional in a setting that reflects my interests, 4 seminar sessions, and a project based on site experience research and observation.  I decided to focus my Practicum course internship towards Archives which will be done under the supervision of Brigette Kamsler, Archivist for the Missionary Research Library Collection and the William Adams Brown Ecumenical Archives.

Why Archives as a focus for my Practicum?  An art librarian internship would seem a more obvious choice from looking at the above biographical information.  You can see that I am definitely interested in art and museum librarianship, archives just doesn’t seem to fit naturally into that mix.  As a kid my favorite classes had to do with history, art history or literature.  I grew up loving to read anything that took primary source documents as their inspiration and it was even better if examples of those documents were somehow included in the book.  I got my BA in American Studies because it was a major that understood that literature, pop culture, personal experience, art; essentially anything that affects us in our daily lives, is what makes history interesting and the study of all those things combined is what gives us a better overall picture of times past.  However in regards to personal experience, aside from a brief stint working on a research project at the National Archives in Washington D. C., I have not really set foot in an archive.  Even my Management of Archives and Special Collections class at Pratt was held in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Columbia University, where I was only able to pour through a total of 5 archival boxes during the entire class.  I have never created a finding aid and I have never sorted a collection from beginning to end.   What really sold me on doing my Practicum internship here at the Burke was Brigette and in some small part the collection itself.

I have met with Brigette a few times before starting work here; I even interviewed her for a paper for that Archives class I mentioned.  She is enthusiastic about her job, not to mention willing to take some time out of her busy schedule to not only thoroughly answer interview questions, but to help me improve my resume and cover letter.  On those visits I enjoyed hearing about her experiences working with the William Adams Brown Archives and seeing some of the more interesting objects in the archive, like the cricket cage and the Indian palm leaf books.  I am really looking forward to exploring more of these ecumenical collections and while religion and theology has never been a main focus of mine, it has been something that I have been interested in knowing more about, especially when I can look at primary source documents.  At one of our meetings Brigette outlined how she was going to organize the internship; essentially it is an internship for the uninitiated archivist, which is perfect for me.  It is also the first internship that has structure and is organized in such a way to teach me exactly what I want to learn.  I have had the opportunity to intern for various institutions, some operate on the philosophy that interns are just there for free work and others were not very structured when it came to what they expected you to do each day.  While this made each day a mystery, it would have been nice to be able to come in assured that I would be busy and learning each day (thankfully in that instance I worked under two very resourceful people who always found me worthwhile and interesting projects).  While I learned much from these previous internships and I enjoyed being there; I am excited by the fact that this internship will be structured and focused on teaching me. 

I cannot wait to get to work following the basic schedule that Brigette outlined in one of our initial meetings.  I will begin by going through some articles related to archival processing that she feels are necessary for any archivist to have a grasp of, as well as the Burke and Columbia processing guides. Then she plans to start me off on a small collection for which I will ignore the “less process, more product” rule (*gasp*) and do a full and thorough processing job.  After I finish with that and I am comfortable with the whole process I may move on to processing a larger collection.  Then we will see what I have time for, it all depends on how quickly I can learn how to do all this.  The two collections that I may be working with are within the William Adams Brown Ecumenical Library Archives, namely the American Bilateral Conversations, 1965-1975 collection and the State Council of Churches collection.

All of that and I have not quite answered the question of why archives for my Practicum project.  My philosophy on internships is that while they are beneficial for the institution in that they get free labor, that benefit should NOT be the guiding philosophy on why an institution is involved in having an internship program.  Internships are always linked to an educational program, therefore internships (especially if the student has to take the internship for school credit, since that means they are paying money to be there) should be focused on teaching the student skills that would be beneficial for them, especially skills that are not necessarily taught or understood  from just classroom experience.  Additionally, students should also focus on applying to internships, not just as names to fill up a resume, but as places where they feel they can learn skills that they are not learning in class.

I decided to do an archival internship for my Practicum because I felt this was the best place for me to learn skills that I have not been able to learn in my classes and in fact it is where I feel I am most lacking in my studies.  While archives may not seem to naturally fit into art librarianship, it does when you realize that art libraries can contain many more things than just books.  Artist files, objects, letters, and journals are just a small list of items that can overlap with what would generally be regarded as items primarily contained in an archive.  Not to mention the fact that many art libraries are housed in institutions that have on-site archives, as well.  The Burke is the first internship I have been involved with which is focused around teaching interns (in this case a well-rounded approach to assessment and description).  It is a good model to follow.  I want to not only be able to learn how to assess, organize, and describe archival collections and write clear, understandable finding aides, but how to be a better manager, especially in regards to interns or new members of the staff.  I would like to focus my project not only on what I need to learn as an archivist, but also on what I think is valuable for any institution: how to effectively teach the uninitiated.