Curators, Conservators, and Museum Workers Career VideoOn February 8, 2020 by Raul Dinwiddie
Preserving and exhibiting objects from the past… curators, conservators, and museum technicians work to inspire and teach audiences today. They oversee and care for collections of artwork and historic items, and conduct education programs for an institution. Curators—or museum directors— negotiate the purchase, sale, and loan of collections. They are often experts in a particular field, such as botany, art, or history, and may authenticate and categorize the specimens in a collection. Curators also manage research and educational programs, and represent their institution at events and in the media. Museum technicians protect, document, and oversee the transportation of museum and collection objects. They also answer questions from the public and help curators and outside scholars use the museum’s collections. Conservators research and preserve works of art and artifacts. They usually specialize in a type of object, such as books, paintings, or architectural material. Conservators use a variety of methods to study objects and reverse years of wear. Curators, museum technicians, and conservators work full time in museums, historical sites, governments, colleges and universities, and corporations. Curator and conservator positions typically require a master’s degree in a field such as museum studies, conservation, or art history, while museum technicians usually have a related bachelor’s degree. Candidates with internship or volunteer experience in archives or museums are more competitive.