So I have some really great news:
A lot of ICCS students are able to intern at the American Academy in Rome with their collection of ancient artifacts. Because it was mainly a teaching collection, many of the objects are without proper labels or accompanying research. Therefore they’ve begun a program where they’ll take ten students at a time and teach them how to work with collections. I was pretty bummed out a couple weeks ago because I was not one of the lucky ones drawn at random, but then someone decided to drop so I got the internship!
Today, after our morning lecture, the ten of us made our way over to the Academy. As it was my first time there, I wasn’t really sure what to expect, but was very excited. And I was right to be! The woman, Valentina, who runs our program and the collection is one of the nicest people I’ve met yet in Italy. She was so considerate and helpful.
We spend our time choosing (in my case) and examining our objects. The way the program works is that the student gets to pick an item or a couple related items which have not yet been cataloged extensively. We create an entry for it (which is published under our names) and use it in a research project of some capacity.
For example, my object is a glass Roman perfume bottle [yesssss, I chose something pretty] so I could focus on how the object would be used in a household, the manufacture of the product, trade routes, perfume itself etc.
I am so very excited for this opportunity! It’s strange to think that I get to claim this as an internship when I’m not running to get coffee, but instead handling history. Today I held something that lasted so many centuries despite its fragility. I held something that a Roman used in her daily routine, something that was created by ancient craftsmen! Ahh, so exciting!