Working at AMNH

The American Museum of Natural History is one of the world’s preeminent scientific and cultural institutions. 

Since its founding in 1869, the Museum has advanced its global mission to discover, interpret, and disseminate information about human cultures, the natural world, and the universe through a wide-ranging program of scientific research, education, and exhibition.

Celebrating Education

Education is central to the mission of AMNH since its founding. Over 5 million people visit the museum every year, and access a wide variety of education materials from downloadable apps and hall guides for special exhibitions, to programs and classes that illuminate what makes our Natural World so amazing.

Hall of Ocean Life – wikipedia commons

One of the largest museum education departments in the country, AMNH’s education team specializes in different audiences and communities at home and internationally. I was honored to be a part of the Youth Initiatives department – serving children grades 6 through early college in programs and internships at the museum.

My Role as Manager

Over my ten years at AMNH, I have played the part of classroom support, project manager, staff supervisor, anthropology educator, teen mentor, materials organizer, animal handler, and even bathroom monitor when it was needed. As Manager of Middle and High School programs I was responsible for programs that saw thousands of young people in NYC every year – from audiences of four hundred or more who attended public lectures in science aimed at Middle Schoolers, to supporting one-on-one mentoring for the interns from the Confederated Tribes of the Grand Ronde. Each program offered unique, memorable experiences for the public. We pulled this off with an amazing staff, whose commitment to education, equity, and community made the museum such a unique place to learn.

Below are some of the programs I was responsible for as Manager, with links to learn more.

image of children bending over large crates of dirt with digging tools
Middle School Archaeology Program – Personal photo


Created for children grades 6-8, these programs ranged from single afternoon experiences to a three-year after school program for youth committed to practicing science. My programs were:

Middle School institutes

One to two-week long day camps focusing on hands-on learning in different Natural History subjects, ranging from Computer Programming for understanding Climate Change, to uncovering the secrets of archaeology and human evolution with hands on digs and video game models of Neanderthal extinction.


Experiencing the latest in scientific research in a fun, creative way, these short programs were centered on a lecture from a visiting scientist in a middle-school friendly format. Followed by an extensive guest Q&A, hands on activities, and snacks.

Science Alliance Program

This exclusive program accepted 45 students from a pool of applicants entering the 6th grade. Participants attended weekly after school programs over the course of 3 years, graduating in the spring of 8th grade and having gained significant understanding of Biodiversity, Physical Science, and Anthropology.

image of teens listening to a person talking over a table full of scientific specimens.
Teens learn about collections from a scientist – Personal Photo


For Teens in New York City, AMNH had a host of opportunities to explore their curiosity and passion for science from on-off teen only experiences to individually crafted in-museum programs created with school partners to supplement science learning in underserved public schools. I was responsible for:

After School Program

Free courses offered in the museum of NYC-based teens. Programs ranged from weekly two-hour sessions to 12-weeks of twice weekly programming.

Teen Sci Cafe

Modeled after the very successful “adult” SciCafe series, Teen SciCafe was the opportunity for teens to have the same informal lecture-based experiences as the 21-and-over crowd, only with soda instead of free wine.

School Partnerships

This program was an exclusive offer with public high school less than 45 minutes from the museum by public transport, serving a community of students that were majority low income and under represented in the sciences. These programs were crafted in tandem with schools to offer a unique experience for gaining science credits during school hours. Beyond a field trip – school partnerships were a close relationship between the museum, school administrators, and science departments in NYC DOE schools.   

a group of women gathered under a large canoe.
Interns and chaperones from CTGR – personal photo


Each Year AMNH hosts a group of interns from the Confederated Tribes of the Grande Ronde. These teens visit as a part of the Willamette Agreement, a reparative relationship between CTGR and AMNH to share a religious object on display.

Interns spend three weeks in New York City, learning about the special role of the museum, the origins of the agreement, and participating in public outreach to teach the public about their history and culture.

adults at working computers while drinking coffee.
Museum Staff learning new software – person photo


With over 100 full-time education department staff, AMNH relies on keeping their workforce trained, engaged, and adapting to best practices in the field. As a manager I worked with department directors to help implement trainings science education, including the Reflecting on Practice program in which AMNH became an East Coast training hub.

I also worked with National programs such as CHISPA through the National Council for La Raza to collaborate on after school teacher trainings in bilingual science education for NYC schools in Washington Heights and the South Bronx.

Working at Brooklyn Public Library

As the nation’s 6th largest public library system with a network of 60 Neighborhood libraries, BPL is committed to providing the borough’s 2.6 million people quality services and a vibrant learning environment through outreach programs, educational workshops and youth services events.

Central BPL Ranch outside of Prospect Park, Brooklyn, New York – Wikipedia commons

Serving My Community

“Brooklyn Public Library is among the borough’s most democratic civic institutions, serving patrons in every neighborhood and from every walk of life. Established in 1896, BPL is one of the nation’s largest public library systems and currently has nearly 700,000 active cardholders. With a branch library within a half-mile of the majority of Brooklyn’s 2.6 million residents, BPL is a recognized leader in cultural offerings, literacy, out-of-school-time services, workforce development programs, and digital literacy. In a borough of wide economic disparity, where the costs of basic necessities often take priority over spending on cultural enrichment opportunities, BPL provides a democratic space where patrons of all economic standings can avail themselves and their children of cultural and educational programs in a broad range of disciplines.”


The American Library Association’s 2014 Public Library Data Service Statistical Report ranked BPL third in the nation among public libraries for public programs offered and program attendance. In 2016, BPL was awarded an IMLS National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor for museum and libraries, in large part due to the work of its Outreach Services department and its efforts to serve Brooklyn’s most vulnerable populations.

My Role in Youth and Family Services

The BCAP Camp Director position wears different hats for different seasons. Half the year I run a summer camp (as you might expect): recruiting families, hiring staff, organizing supplies and logistics for the 200+ campers we serve each year. I the colder months, I serve as a Teen Coordinator, facilitating teen programs, running internships, and assisting in staff development around supporting our teen community. Throughout the year I manage the six-institution relationship that makes BAP possible, and scout for new partners throughout Brooklyn.

Camp at BPL

Brooklyn Cultural Adventures Program

Brooklyn Cultural Adventures Program (BCAP) offers summer programs for youth based on a collaboration of six cultural institutions in the heart of Brooklyn: Brooklyn Public Library, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Brooklyn Children’s Museum, Brooklyn Museum, Prospect Park Alliance and Prospect Park Zoo, plus a summer guest partner. Adventurers take part in fun, hands-on experiences that weave connections between art, world culture, literature, history, nature, technology, and science.

Our camp is two weeks long, with curricula designed specifically for a unique BCAP experience. Campers visit each partner twice during a camp session, and participate in a group art show in the Brooklyn Museum to showcase their work. Camp also embraces fun traditions with Water Day, Team building, and organized games to relax. 

BCAP at Home

During the lockdown in 2020 and 2021, BCAP moved online to celebrate Brooklyn virtually. Our partners created interactive experiences for campers in live virtual sessions. You can see recordings from BCAP at home on the Brooklyn Public Library youtube page.

Teens at BPL

Library Youth Council & Urban Art Jamm

Teens ages 14-18 plan and execute BPL’s largest teen event of the year, Urban Art Jamm at Central Library. Interns build skills in event planning, budgeting, and marketing while learning the ins and outs of how libraries operate.

BKLYN Bookmatch Teen

Teens learn the art of recommending books from librarians, book selectors, publishers and authors, and develop a readers’ advisory service exclusive to teens. Interns represent BPL at events and select books to be added to the Library’s collection! Past events include live Book Matching at Party on the Plaza, monthly summer Discord programs, and instagram story book recommendations for @BKLYNfuture.

Middle School Science

A series of virtual programs focusing on science opportunities for middle schooler aged youth. Programs included Coding at Home, utilizing coding software available for free online, and Give Me the Moon Over Brooklyn, a DIY astronomy program that focused on how to practice the science of looking space from your stoop.

More teen programs, internships, volunteer opportunities and other events created a supported by YFS staff can be found on the BPL Teen page: