Lincoln University, the historically Black educational institution in Pennsylvania, has entered into a partnership with the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia to create a museum studies program. The Barnes Foundation holds one of the world’s finest collections of impressionist, post-impressionist, and early modern paintings.
Only 4 percent of the nation’s museum leadership is African American, according to a study by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The new Lincoln University Museum Studies program has the goal of increasing the number of African Americans who pursue careers in museum management.
Lincoln’s museum studies students will hone their skills through rigorous coursework, paid internships, enrichment programs, presentations from celebrated artists and museum professionals, exposure through hands-on interactions with high quality collections, mentoring, and career guidance.
“This program will offer students rich courses that are complemented by hands-on, project-based learning. Students’ unique opportunities will include access to staff, collections, and other resources at Lincoln and the Barnes Foundation,” said Blake Bradford, the newly appointed director of the museum studies program and former Bernard C. Watson Director of Education at the Barnes Foundation. “The new museum studies major will provide students the tools that are critical to begin careers or pursue graduate studies in the museum field.”
Lincoln University Interim President Richard Green said “combining the resources of these two institutions will make Lincoln a leader in preparing African American students for careers in the museum professions, a field where African Americans have been historically underrepresented.”