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Ninth International Conference on the Inclusive Museum Recap

Published October 10, 2016

FSU Department of Art Education MEX and Arts Administration alumni, current students, and faculty attended the Ninth International Conference on the Inclusive Museum, held on September 16th to the 18th at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati, OH. Many presented at the conference and some received a Graduate Scholar Award.

The International Conference on the Inclusive Museum, created and hosted by the Inclusive Museum Knowledge Community, features emerging scholars and leaders in the museum field from a wide range of disciplines and from all over the world. It allows attendees to share their disciplinary focus, explore main field concerns and topics, and build connections with fellow conference participants. The conference emphasizes on addressing the ways museums can be inclusive, their function as a result of current social change, and their potential of being catalysts for further change. The Ninth International Conference on the Inclusive Museum specially focused on the following themes, among others: Visitor Engagement, Cultural Heritage and Preservation, the Role of the Museum on Visitor Experience, The Virtual Museum, Collection Dynamics, Knowledge Management Paradigms and Practices, Museum Accessibility and Engagement, Politics and Social Impacts of Representation, Museum Communication and Education, Nontraditional Museums, Visitors with Disabilities, Social Inclusion and Participation, Representing Social and Cultural Heritage.



Conference Presentations and Workshop

The Department proudly shares that, in this year’s International Conference on the Inclusive Museum, FSU MEX and Arts Administration students, alumni, and faculty provided presentations and workshops for conference attendees. The following are the MEX and Arts Administration presenters, the titles of their respective presentation/workshop, and content overview of each.




Satisfaction is Key: Volunteer Motivation and Retention in Museums
Sarah Graves – MEX Doctoral Student at the Florida State University; Collections Information Specialist at the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts

Volunteers are vital to museums, but a decrease of volunteers in non-profits might stem from waning volunteer motivation. This proposal uses Herzerg’s theory to examine volunteer motivation and retention.


Contemporary Latino Art in the Heart of San Antonio: Insights into a Visitor-centered Exhibition Featuring the Supported Interpretation Model
Alicia Viera – Arts Administration Doctoral Student and Alumna at the Florida State University; Interpretive Planner at the Detroit Institute of Arts Museum

This paper shares details of “Contemporary Latino Art: El Corazón de San Antonio,” a bilingual art exhibition curated using the Supported Interpretation (SI) visitor-centered model for participatory, community-based exhibitions.


Video Modeling in the Art Museum: Enhancing the Museum Experience for Visitors with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Anthony Woodruff – MEX Doctoral Student at the Florida State University

The use of video-based instruction methods in the museum field could enhance the learning experience of visitors with autism and their families.


Social Justice and Museum Accessibility: Working to Become More Inclusive
Morgan Szymanski – MEX Masters Student at the Florida State University
Anthony Woodruff– MEX Doctoral Student at the Florida State University

This paper examines the history of museums representing people with disabilities, their universal accommodations practices, and how museums have responded to become more inclusive environments for today’s visitors.


The Ripple Effect: Classifying How Docents Think About Art to Better Inform Conversations with Museum Visitors  (Workshop)
John Jay Boda – MEX Doctoral Student at the Florida State University
Dr. Pat Villeneuve – Arts Administration Professor and Director at the Florida State University

Expanding visitors’ aesthetic, reflective judgements concerning art and social justice often begin with docents and ripples out to society. Now, there’s a taxonomy to help inform docents’ conversations with visitors.



2016 Graduate Scholar Award Recipients

Graduate Scholar Awards are given to exceptional graduate students who actively contribute to topics and discussions highlighted at each International Conference on the Inclusive Museum. For this year’s conference, two FSU MEX students received a 2016 Graduate Scholar Award:


Sarah Graves

Morgan Szymanski

The Department proudly congratulates Sarah and Morgan for this outstanding achievement!



Student Statements

When asked to comment about their experience at the Ninth International Conference on the Inclusive Museum, some of the MEX student presenters stated the following:



I was thrilled to join other Art Education and MEX graduate students from FSU at the Inclusive Museum Conference in Cincinnati this year. The conference not only fostered collaboration and engagement with international scholars, but also the importance of inclusiveness not only in museums but all around the world. I look forward to working with the many connections made at the conference and on building additional experiences in the future.

Sarah Graves

For my first time out as a primary presenter, I think my conference experience was a success. I definitely have room to grow and learn, but I gained insight into my research and made important contacts that will help me later. And of course, the Inclusive Museum’s philosophy aligns with that of our department, so it’s a great conference for all programs, especially MEX.

 John Jay Boda

This was my first time going to Inclusive Museum, and I can honestly say that it was the most inspiring experience! Everyone, from the guest speakers to our host museum to our presenters, had real conversations about the importance and reality of inclusivity in the museum world, and I sincerely appreciated that. I cannot wait to go back again next year.

Morgan Szymanski