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Career and Education Opportunities for Museum Technicians in Warwick, Rhode Island

Museum technicians can find both educational opportunities and jobs in the Warwick, Rhode Island area. There are currently ninety working museum technicians in Rhode Island; this should grow by 11% to about 100 working museum technicians in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for museum technicians are expected to grow by about 25.6%. Museum technicians generally prepare specimens, such as fossils, skeletal parts, and textiles, for museum collection and exhibits.

Museum technicians earn about $11 per hour or $23,260 yearly on average in Rhode Island and about $17 per hour or $36,660 yearly on average nationally. Incomes for museum technicians are not quite as good as in the overall category of Libraries and Museums in Rhode Island, and not quite as good as the overall Libraries and Museums category nationally. Jobs in this field include: exhibits coordinator, armorer technician, and paintings conservator.

The Warwick area is home to fifty-one schools of higher education, including nine within twenty-five miles of Warwick where you can get a degree as a museum technician. Museum technicians usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years training to become a museum technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Museum Technician

Museum Technician video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, museum technicians prepare specimens, such as fossils, skeletal parts, and textiles, for museum collection and exhibits. They also may restore documents or install, arrange, and exhibit materials.

Museum technicians set up and ready artifacts for exhibition, ensuring the artifacts' safety, reporting their status and condition, and identifying and correcting any problems with the set-up. They also direct exhibit installations, assisting with layout and models, and ensuring the availability of needed materials. Equally important, museum technicians have to decide on whether objects need repair and choose the safest and most effective method of repair. They are often called upon to supervise and coordinate with volunteers. They are expected to clean objects, such as paper and furniture, using cleansers and polishes. Finally, museum technicians ready artifacts for storage and shipping.

Every day, museum technicians are expected to be able to think through problems and come up with general rules. They need to prioritize information for further consideration. It is also important that they articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for museum technicians to present public programs and tours. They are often called upon to notify superior when restoration of artifacts requires outside experts. They also repair, restore and reassemble artifacts, designing and fabricating missing or broken parts, to restore them to their original appearance and avoid deterioration. They are sometimes expected to direct and supervise curatorial and technical staff in the handling and storage of art objects. Somewhat less frequently, museum technicians are also expected to present public programs and tours.

Museum technicians sometimes are asked to build and install wooden steps and walkways to get access to or permit improved view of exhibited equipment. They also have to be able to ready reports on the operation of conservation laboratories, documenting the state of artifacts and the methods of preservation and repair used And finally, they sometimes have to direct and supervise curatorial and technical staff in the handling and storage of art objects.

Like many other jobs, museum technicians must be thorough and dependable and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Warwick include:

  • Archivist. Appraise, edit, and direct safekeeping of permanent records and historically valuable documents. Participate in research activities based on archival materials.
  • Audio-Visual Director. Prepare, plan, and operate audio-visual teaching aids for use in education. May record, catalogue, and file audio-visual materials.
  • Curator. Administer affairs of museum and conduct research programs. Direct instructional, research, and public service activities of institution.
  • Librarian. Administer libraries and perform related library services. Work in a variety of settings, including public libraries, schools, colleges and universities, museums, corporations, government agencies, law firms, non-profit organizations, and healthcare providers. Tasks may include selecting, acquiring, and maintaining library materials; and furnishing reference, bibliographical, and readers' advisory services. May perform in-depth, strategic research, and synthesize, analyze, and filter information. May set up or work with databases and information systems to catalogue and access information.
  • Library Information Technian. Assist librarians by helping readers in the use of library catalogs, databases, and indexes to locate books and other materials; and by answering questions that require only brief consultation of standard reference. Compile records; sort and shelve books; remove or repair damaged books; register patrons; check materials in and out of the circulation process. Replace materials in shelving area (stacks) or files. Includes bookmobile drivers who operate bookmobiles or light trucks that pull trailers to specific locations on a predetermined schedule and assist with providing services in mobile libraries.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Museum Technician Training

Bridgewater State College - Bridgewater, MA

Bridgewater State College, 131 Summer Street, Bridgewater, MA 02325. Bridgewater State College is a large college located in Bridgewater, Massachusetts. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 10,269 students and an admission rate of 62%. Bridgewater State College has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation which graduated four students in 2008.

Salve Regina University - Newport, RI

Salve Regina University, 100 Ochre Point Avenue, Newport, RI 02840-4192. Salve Regina University is a small university located in Newport, Rhode Island. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,691 students and an admission rate of 59%. Salve Regina University has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation which graduated one student in 2008.

Brown University - Providence, RI

Brown University, Prospect St, Providence, RI 02912. Brown University is a medium sized university located in Providence, Rhode Island. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 8,332 students and an admission rate of 14%. Brown University has 2 areas of study related to Museum Technician. They are:

  • Museology/Museum Studies, master's degree which graduated 17 students in 2008.
  • Art History, Criticism and Conservation, bachelor's degree, master's degree, and doctor's degree which graduated seventeen, one, and seven students respectively in 2008.

Rhode Island College - Providence, RI

Rhode Island College, 600 Mount Pleasant Ave, Providence, RI 02908. Rhode Island College is a medium sized college located in Providence, Rhode Island. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 9,085 students and an admission rate of 72%. Rhode Island College has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation.

University of Rhode Island - Kingston, RI

University of Rhode Island, , Kingston, RI 02881. University of Rhode Island is a large university located in Kingston, Rhode Island. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 15,609 students and an admission rate of 82%. University of Rhode Island has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation which graduated one student in 2008.

Roger Williams University - Bristol, RI

Roger Williams University, One Old Ferry Rd, Bristol, RI 02809-2923. Roger Williams University is a small university located in Bristol, Rhode Island. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 4,609 students and an admission rate of 61%. Roger Williams University has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation which graduated one student in 2008.

University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth - North Dartmouth, MA

University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth, 285 Old Westport Rd, North Dartmouth, MA 02747-2300. University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth is a medium sized university located in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 9,200 students and an admission rate of 66%. University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation which graduated two students in 2008.

Wheaton College - Norton, MA

Wheaton College, 26 E Main St, Norton, MA 02766. Wheaton College is a small college located in Norton, Massachusetts. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 1,657 students and an admission rate of 43%. Wheaton College has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation which graduated seven students in 2008.

Providence College - Providence, RI

Providence College, River Ave and Eaton St, Providence, RI 02918-0001. Providence College is a medium sized college located in Providence, Rhode Island. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,180 students and an admission rate of 45%. Providence College has a bachelor's degree program in Art History, Criticism and Conservation.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Warwick, Rhode Island

Warwick, Rhode Island
Warwick, Rhode Island photo by Marcbela

Warwick is located in Kent County, Rhode Island. It has a population of over 84,483, which has shrunk by 1.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Warwick, 94, is below the national average. New single-family homes in Warwick are priced at $129,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, thirty new homes were constructed in Warwick, down from forty-nine the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Warwick are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and public administration. The average travel time to work is about 22 minutes. More than 24.5% of Warwick residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.9%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Warwick is 11.5%, which is less than Rhode Island's average of 12.2%.

The percentage of Warwick residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 67.1%, is more than both the national and state average. Warwick Bible Chapel, Warwick Central Baptist Church and Warwick Christian Fellowship Church are all churches located in Warwick. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Episcopal Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Warwick is home to the Kent County Chamber of Commerce and the Community College of Rhode Island Learning Resources Center as well as Apponaug Historic District and Salter Grove State Park. Shopping malls in the area include Buttonwoods Plaza Shopping Center, Buttonwoods Shopping Center and Clocktower Square Shopping Center. Visitors to Warwick can choose from Fairfield Inn Providence/Warwick, Extended Stay America and Courtyard by Marriott for temporary stays in the area.