Jordan Hancock, a rising senior from Benton, is gaining some valuable professional experience by working as an intern at the Historic Arkansas Museum this summer.
“I had an internship in London in a museum last year that I had to leave a month early because of COVID,” she said. “I want to work in museums in the future, and I loved the chance to get another internship. The Division of Arkansas Heritage has all the museum internships listed on their website. It made me want to get another museum position when I could.”
Hancock works in the Curatorial Department under the guidance of Victoria Chandler, curator of collections.
“Jordan is a very promising intern and really has a natural feel for museum studies,” Chandler said. “We hope she will continue to intern with us in the future. Jordan clearly has a passion for objects and the study of material culture. We are excited to continue working with her as she begins her foray into the field.”
As part of her duties, Hancock assists with the museum’s exhibits, investigates the history of objects in the collections, writes descriptions for objects, and tags them with identifying information.
“The curatorial team’s job is to take care of the museum’s collections, restore historic objects, and create displays and exhibits for the museum,” Hancock said. “At our museum, we are actually an historic site first, and our most important objects are the buildings on site. Some are original to the site, and some have been moved a few blocks. They are the oldest buildings in Little Rock.”
Hancock is also a Donaghey Scholar and art history tutor. Last year, she spent the spring 2020 semester interning at the Foundling Museum in London.
“I worked with the visitor engagement team,” she said. “I was with the front desk for the most part, and I helped conduct tours and engage with guests at the front of the house. I also helped with some classes with the education department. I worked there for two months before I had to end up going back home on my 20th birthday.”
After she graduates with a bachelor’s degree in art history in 2022, Hancock plans to take a gap year so she can get more experience working in museums before pursuing a master’s degree in public history at UA Little Rock.
“This is such a perfect internship,” Hancock said. “I will probably continue to do volunteer work with the collections teams during my gap year. I would love to make this more of a consistent part of my life. The objects focus a lot on crafts, textiles, and ceramics. I think that craft work is especially interesting to me because I’m an art history major.”
The photos of Jordan Hancock are courtesy of Andrew Vogler/Historic Arkansas Museum.