Below, arts management graduates (from left) Victoria Page ’16, Lauren “Lo” Sottile ’12 and Kristina Alexander ’16 are among the MCLA alumni who found positions at the Berkshire Museum.
Berkshire Museum Fond of Hiring MCLA Grads
Little more than a decade ago, MCLA saw a need for arts administrators, especially throughout the region. As a result, the campus launched its unique arts management degree program. Today, our graduates fill positions at arts venues throughout the Berkshires, and the Berkshire Museum is no exception.
Lauren “Lo” Sottile ’12 has worked at the Museum since 2014, and recently was promoted to the position of development manager. Kristina Alexander ’16 is the assistant manager in guest services, and Victoria Page ’16, a development associate.
According to Nina Garlington, chief engagement officer at the Berkshire Museum, half of the development team within the Museum’s engagement department consists of MCLA arts management graduates.
Garlington, who worked in MCLA’s Office of Advancement when the College’s arts management program began, said, “It is beyond fulfilling to now benefit professionally from the program’s alumni. I am consistently impressed by the knowledge, expertise and professionalism of the alumni I have had the pleasure to work with.”
As the development manager, Sottile is responsible for the oversight of donor relationships and securing individual-based donations in support of the Museum’s annual budget through annual appeals, membership, special events and one-time gifts.
“Working at the Berkshire Museum is wonderful!” Sottile exclaimed. “We all operate as a team, which means there is very clear support and many opportunities for open collaboration. It also means that our ideas are all taken into account and seen as a valuable piece of the process, so we are able to easily make a big impact on the organization and in the community.”
MCLA’s arts management program set the foundation for her entire career, Sottile said.
“Working closely with the professors and downtown for hands-on experience through MCLA Gallery 51, DownStreet Art, and Performing Arts Management festivals it quickly became clear to me that I am most able to thrive when given the opportunity to help communities build and grow,” Sottile added.
Page, who started work at the Museum last month after finishing her degree in just three years, added, “Early on, I decided that I wanted to make the most of my time at MCLA and leave no time wasted.
“The program itself allowed me a vast amount of flexibility to tailor the program to my trajectory, as well as enough parameters to make sure that I was getting exposed to information, even if I didn’t think I was going to need it.”
Alexander started working at the Berkshire Museum as a summer intern in 2015. That fall, she moved to a part-time position with guest services, before her promotion to full time in 2016. This year, she became an assistant manager.
MCLA’s arts management program, Alexander said, prepared her well for the world of fine and performing arts through its “wonderful mentors” and rigorous education requirements.
“The best part of my job is seeing the joy and excitement on people’s faces when they enjoy the Museum,” Alexander said. “It makes working here rewarding, and reassures me we are fulfilling our mission of bringing people together for experiences that spark creativity and innovative thinking by making inspiring, educational connections with art, history and natural science.”