How A Neighborhood Studios Alum Got Her Dream Career

Neighborhood Studios
2014 Neighborhood Studios apprentice at the Amistad Center

Not everyone can look back at their summer work experience and say it helped their career, but for Neighborhood Studios alum, Molly McGuire it opened doors to her dream job. Molly participated in the Snap! Photography studio in 2010 and is now pursuing her passion for the arts and museum work at the Amistad Center. Read on for Molly’s experience at Neighborhood Studios. Interested in becoming a Neighborhood Studios apprentice this summer? Send an application no later than Friday, April 17.

What is your fondest memory of Neighborhood Studios?

I’m not sure I have one specific memory, but when I look back at the time as a whole, it was just an incredibly fun six weeks of learning and making friends. I remember being so nervous to start and just a couple of weeks in, I had made a bunch of new friends that I got to take photographs with every day. I really enjoyed creating photo shoots around Hartford and getting to know the city.

How did Neighborhood Studios help you achieve your career goals?

The SNAP! studio takes place within the Wadsworth Atheneum. I had grown up going to the New Britain Museum, but it was different going into a museum everyday because I worked there. Every day I walked through the galleries, and we got the chance to meet the people who worked at the Wadsworth and Amistad Center, exposing me to all of the different facets of a museum. Neighborhood Studios really opened that door for me, especially coming back to be the assistant for SNAP!, and getting more involved with the Amistad Center. While I still love photography and doing ceramics, museum work is the career I hope to continue pursuing.

What is the most meaningful lesson or learning experience from Neighborhood Studios?

For me, the reinforcement that there are ways to make a living in the art world, whether as a working artist, in arts administration, etc. There are a lot of times I’ll tell people what I wanted to do, or what I was majoring in, and you just know that look saying “Oh, that’s nice. So what’re you going to do with an art degree?” Neighborhood Studios proves that there’s plenty to do by introducing kids to artists, career skills, and a network of people who are doing it.

What advice would you give to new apprentices?

My advice for new apprentices would be to soak it all up during the six weeks, and not to be afraid to ask questions. It’s an incredible experience that can open lots of doors.

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