Studying Tourism Technician program in Lisbon, Portugal (and with family in Finland), I was interested to have my internship in a Finnish museum and Nautelankoski museum was the first one to answer back.
The building is surrounded by nature and wildlife, old historical buildings and the Aura river rapids; this environment made the work days feel less chaotic.
The museum has exhibitions about different topics related to the important cultural history and biodiversity of the area. I wasn’t expecting such a diverse museum area in a rather small location and I was excited to learn about it all and contribute as best as I could.
The passionate full-time and part-time workers, interns and volunteers from all ages and backgrounds were all friendly, extremely hard working and treated me with respect, kindness, patience and like an equal.
I was given differents tasks and jobs throughout my time here, as they were needed. One of my main tasks was cataloguing: a process that happens between receiving an item donation from eager residents of Lieto and the item being used in an exhibition. It includes photographing, researching, measuring, scanning, identifying the item (painting, writing, sewing) and storing. I was impressed with the museum’s organization and meticulous methods used.
I also photographed the museum, its surroundings and main events to use in social media promotion; packaged candy, baked pies and made coffee for the museum’s café and shop and guided groups in an ancient techniques lesson of rope making (the exchange was rather amusing with children because of the English/Finnish barrier), among other activities and tasks. Doing these, I’ve improved my language skills, learned about the work and steps to build an exhibition and create activities for the visitors.
After the three months, I appreciate museum’s workers job more because I hadn’t realize how arduous it is and how important it is to keep cultural history and traditions alive. The workers always made me feel like my position was important and useful.
I leave very happy and thankful to have gotten to know the people here, the methods and knowledge I was taught and for the various experiences I had.
Written by: Museum intern