Katie Barnard ('10) | History
Ralph Appelbaum Associates
Katie Barnard, History Graduate (’10), prepared herself for a distinguished career in museum design by seizing the opportunities presented to her at ACU.
While at ACU, Katie was heavily involved both in academics and extracurricular activities. First and foremost she took advantage of the opportunity to develop personal relationships with her professors who challenged her. “I was blessed to have amazing professors,” she said. “I chose to take classes from people I admired and respected. Those people pushed me in ways I never expected to be pushed.” She expanded her horizons by studying in Oxford for a semester with ACU Study Abroad, and gained management experience while serving as a coordinator for Summit. She also participated in a Summer Language School in Guatemala and was a part of an ACU social club. These experiences prepared her to succeed in the esteemed opportunities that she would pursue after graduation.
Grad School & Real World Experience
After leaving Abilene, she went on to complete her Masters in Museum Studies at NYU. She was surprised by the intensity of graduate school and added that, “Moving to New York City was a little bit of a culture shock,” but she was prepared. Her hard work would lead her to further opportunities in the museum industry. After earning her Masters she went on to serve as the Exhibition Media Intern for the National September 11 Memorial and Museum and subsequently as the Social Media Engagement Intern for the New York City Tenement Museum.
Katie connects people with powerful stories through her thoughtful designs and is a great example of the results of diligence and initiative. “I am driven by this need I’ve always had to protect the stories of others.” Katie says. In August she was hired for the position of Content Coordinator for Ralph Appelbaum Associates, one of the most prestigious museum exhibition design firms in the world, and will be working on exhibits at the brand new Staten Island Museum and St. Louis Soldier’s Museum.
Looking back on her time at ACU, Katie says she is grateful for the early conversations about the museum field and for “the love, support, and constructive criticism,” she received from her professors. Katie’s experience at ACU helped prepare her for the challenges and opportunities she would face after graduation and her dedication to her work has set her up for success in her field.
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