Second year seems to be that point where everyone thinks ‘oh shit, I need to look into getting a job’, and so begins the chaos of trying to get experience for jobs. If you’re not lucky enough to snag a volunteering position in the sector you want to work in, you’re probably looking into internships for next summer. You may have come across a similar problem to me: the sheer lack of internships for the arts.
”It’s times like these when I almost wish I’d done something like Engineering or Maths”
If you’re scouring TARGETjobs.co.uk, prospects.ac.uk or studentjob.co.uk like me you’ve probably found a multitude of HR, financial, management and marketing internships, but very few internships that have anything directly to do with the arts. It’s times like these when I almost wish I’d done something like Engineering or Maths, where I’d be able to find something to do with my summer that doesn’t involve tackling my reading lists for third year, and is relevant to what I want to do once I finish university (museum/gallery work).
”Damn you, University of Manchester and your involvement with the arts”
You may be asking yourself ‘why can’t you just email galleries or museums and ask to volunteer or get some work experience there?’ A decent suggestion, but I’ve emailed pretty much every museum or gallery within 30 miles of my home town, and almost every single one has said they don’t take on people for internships/work experience because of the problems involved for them, with the rest saying they either aren’t looking for any more volunteers, or their opportunities are only open to students at their local/funding universities (damn you, University of Manchester and your involvement with the arts).
I could stay in Nottingham, but many of the internships are either open to NTU students (Nottingham Contemporary), or have been replaced by youth curation groups (Nottingham Castle, Nottingham Contemporary).
Thankfully I’ve been able to get some volunteering experience at Nottingham Lakeside Arts for the past 18 months (which you should also do if you want to get some museum/gallery experience, hint hint), but can’t help but feel like an internship would be something a little more useful.
”Perhaps I’ll just have to send more grovelling emails to everyone who might take me and see what happens!”
Perhaps spring will see a multitude of arts internships being advertised, though I have my doubts. Perhaps I’ll just have to send more grovelling emails to everyone who might take me and see what happens!