Interning at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art

By Marian Williams, ’20

When I decided on my arts management major, I remember looking through the requirements and seeing that an internship was one of its core components. It was daunting. The idea of completing an internship had a touch of mystery to it, especially for an international student which seemed to require a lot more paperwork than the average person. Thus, I decided to use this component to explore on-campus arts organizations, which was when I discovered an invaluable learning experience with the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art.

▲This is an example of a sample activity I completed for the Halsey’s education packet

I never saw myself as an example of diversity until I came to the US for college. I am Eurasian, grew up in Hong Kong, and went to a Chinese international school whose name many English speakers might struggle to remember, never mind pronounce. Full disclosure, in the grand scheme of things I have only dipped my toes into the arts management field. But that being said, in Charleston, it’s hard to find someone who looks like me and it’s even harder to find someone who shares my experiences, identity, and culture, though I imagine it’s different in larger cities. I can’t speak for other people with different backgrounds and ethnicities but as a Chinese woman, I see many Asian artists but not a lot of Asian diversity in the arts management field. The first time I came into contact with an important figure in this field who was of Asian descent, was through a streamed lecture led by John Maeda and for some strange reason, I was really excited about it. Arts management has a long way to go for the Asian community and it’s exciting to be part of that.

For the upcoming freshmen: take some time to try new things! When I came into college I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. The best part about going to a liberal arts college is that you have the opportunity to explore many different fields and career paths, so make the most of it and try whatever sparks your interest.

Marian Williams is currently a senior at the College of Charleston, due to graduate in May 2021. She is double majoring in Arts Management and History and is a member of the College’s Varsity Sailing Team. Marian grew up in Hong Kong, attending high school at Kiangsu Chekiang College International Section, but has recently relocated to Taipei, Taiwan. Outside of representing Hong Kong in sailing, Marian was a member of her high school’s Student Representative Council and served as house captain in her final year. 

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