Meet Our Fall Interns: Mary, Yanixia, M

Our fall interns are finishing up their internships. Learn about what they have been working on over the past three months.

Mary Pedraza, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Mary Pedraza, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

“Hello! My name is Mary Pedraza and I am the Archives Intern this fall. I am working remotely from Urbana, Illinois, where I am pursuing a master’s in library and information science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign! I spend my days working from home and cooking. I also love watching baseball and hockey (when they are on) and sewing. In undergrad, I interned at the campus art museum and took art history courses that inspired my interest in art. Through a campus job at the university archives, I developed a love for all things archives and I am thus working to become an archivist. Through my internship at the Phillips, I am lucky enough to be able to merge these interests. I am working closely with the Digital Assets Manager Rachel Jacobson to establish the use of ArchivesSpace at the Phillips. I have created style guides for processing collections and a manual for building the archival collection on ArchivesSpace. I am so thankful for this internship! While the pandemic has taken many things from us, it has given me new avenues for building professional experience. I never would have been able to work at a museum hundreds of miles away from home while still being home, yet I feel deeply connected to the work I am doing and the impact I am making of the Phillips! I look forward to completing my internship in a few weeks and keeping watch as the Phillips Archives becomes an independent and important repository of art.”

Yanixia Ochoa Gutierrez, Year Up (NOVA)

“My name is Yanixia Ochoa Gutierrez and I am from Northern Virginia. I graduated from a workforce development program for young adults known as Year Up. My role as the HR intern at The Phillips Collection consisted of discussing and creating memorandums that pertained to the growth and uniting individuals who associated with the museum. I also have orchestrated meetings to further explain the open enrollment process with vendors, so that our staff may gain benefits for medical, transportation, retirement, and other additional benefits. Ever since the pandemic, although unfortunate as it may seem, it has given me plenty of good opportunities to further display my potential through online interactions with work-related tasks. I feel that as long as technology keep improving, it’d be in our best interest to adapt with it and I am truly grateful for this internship experience as there is much to gain from it.”

M Aragon, University of Maryland College Park

“My name is M, use they/them pronouns, and I am the Diversity, Equity, Accessibility, and Inclusion (DEAI) Intern at The Phillips Collection this fall. I graduated last spring from University of Maryland College Park with a degree in film studies and English literature/language with a certificate in Latin American studies. Even though I did not study art history, I believed that my academic background was especially helpful to provide project management skills in this position. In undergrad, I helped infuse LGBTQ+ culture and history through arts programming and learned how to create LGBTQ+ inclusive spaces. At my time here at the Phillips, I was grateful to continue this work and study the ways museums have operated and the efforts being made for more inclusion and equity. My personal research at the Phillips was more focused on creating a trans inclusive environment for visitors and workers alike. In addition, I was able to research artists in the collection through a racial equitable lens. Even though I wasn’t able to go into the physical space, my mentors in the department were very conscious of facilitating a virtual space for us to meet each other and talk honestly about navigating the arts admin field. I also feel like working from home has given me a chance to show myself that I can work diligently and wear comfortable, accessible clothes. I hope that future interns and current employees at the Phillips or any museum can expand or learn from the trans inclusive toolkit I created. My goal is to continue to work in different types of arts and cultural organizations that center the needs of marginalized communities.”

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