College Students Takeover Museum For the Day

The River & Rowing Museum was taken over by 19 students from The Henley College as part of the national initiative Kids in Museum Takeover Day on Friday.
The students were split into four teams; curatorial, front of house and shop, social media and presentation. The front of house team curated a new Christmas display in the shop and created a Festive trail for visitors.  The curatorial team created a Letter Hunt for the day and did insightful tours for visitors.  The social media team created engaging posts for Instagram and TikTok.  The presentation team came up with a creative slide show on the Takeover Day featuring ideas, such as proposing future events like a Quiz and a Games night, that would appeal to college students.
Megan Sealy, Educational Development Manager at the River & Rowing Museum who had organised the event said, “The students had to apply to take part.  It was open to all students.  They had to send in a CV and say which role they would like to apply for and why they would be suitable for the role.  They had to appoint a Manager for each department.  It’s the first time we’ve had The Henley College students here, previously we’ve had Gillotts School and Key Stage 2 students from primary schools.  This is the first time we’ve done this initiative since Covid.”
Tea Scott who is studying Classics, Sociology and English Literature and Language. They said, “I applied for the curatorial role and that’s the role I got.  Today, we split off into groups and picked a gallery.  In these galleries, we found some objects and artefacts that we found interesting and researched them.  We then put together and delivered a tour for visitors telling them about the different objects and educating them about them.  There are two really interesting pieces; I can’t decide between which is the most fascinating, there are some Anglo-Saxon log boats from 500 AD and then there is a Jan Siberechts painting which is just gorgeous.”
River & Rowing Museum Director, Steve O’Connor said, “It’s great to have you here today and to see you in action and hear your ideas.  There’s been some great photos taken and tours going on and some fantastic project management.  It’s really important for us at the museum to play our part in the community and help where we can.  Hopefully you’ve found we’ve helped and you’ve found it interesting and you’ve come away with something from it.  It’s been a pleasure to have you down here and hopefully we can do it again next year.”
Deputy Mayor, Councillor Rory Hunt said, “Thank you for your kind invitation, today. Kellie, (Henley Mayor) sends her apologies for not being able to be here.  It’s wonderful to see the museum working so well with the local college and seeing so many young people who are interested in the museum.  It’s also wonderful to see the museum trying to become even more embedded in the community.  I hope this is the first of many.”
Satwant Deol, Principal of The Henley College said, “You’ve all been absolutely fantastic.  Giving a tour; learning lots of information and having absorbed all of that this morning is amazing.  This is what I call a real life learning work experience – that’s the classroom of the future.  I would also like to thank the museum as this is a great collaboration with our college.  Thank you for having our students here and for taking time out to be one of our partners.”

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