Friday 24 April 2009
"I am Stephanie McKenzie, the Auckland Art Gallery’s Marylyn Mayo Intern for 2009. The Internship was first offered in 2005 and represents a major financial commitment from Dr John Mayo and the Marylyn Mayo Foundation, as well as a large commitment of the gallery’s staff time and resources. By offering an opportunity for young and established professionals, it fills a gap in an industry where career paths are not always clear. For young professionals such as myself, the Internship provides a chance to quickly gain useful and transferable experience and receive training from some of the most talented and respected people in this industry.
During my three-month contract, I have undertaken research, writing and digitisation tasks for the gallery’s Lindauer Online Project.
When I was applying for this Internship, I was interested to know what the experience was of previous Interns. Thus, in discussing my observations I hope to inform future applicants and dispel some myths.
Applying for internships and scholarships can sometimes be an intimidating experience. My application required seven different documents, and although this was a time consuming exercise, it was easily achieved and I encourage future applicants to not let this stand in their way. I accepted involvement in the Internship’s gallery assigned project, but an applicant can also suggest a mutually beneficial project for consideration. The gallery offered flexibility around start dates and hours worked, and I received all the normal advantages of sick leave and annual leave. The Internship also offers a stipend and this helped to make it a viable opportunity for me, as well as setting it apart from many other fellowships.
This Internship is a perfect example of the old adage, ‘you get out what you put in’. I took on many enriching tasks beyond those listed in my initial Job Description; these include extra writing for the Lindauer Online website, and organising a donation to the gallery’s library of material relating to patron, Henry Partridge.
I was embraced by the gallery’s stimulating and collegial environment, have been encouraged to participate in meetings, and staff have gladly accommodated me within their busy schedules. As I near the end of my contract, I find myself a more capable, proactive, inspired and dedicated professional. I am so pleased to have been associated with the good name of the Marylyn Mayo Internship and am grateful for this opportunity. "
Stephanie McKenzie – 7.4.2009