Grad student aspires to bring people together

Currently, undergraduate students are sending in their applications to graduate programs at universities across the globe. Although students said they are excited and ready for a new project in life, many of them have also said they do not know what happens when they start their graduate program.

Photo courtesy of Samantha Becker

Samantha Becker, a first-year graduate student in museum professions, applied to Seton Hall’s graduate program last year. Becker previously interned at Christie’s Art Auction House in the post-war and contemporary art department.

While interning, Becker said her perspective on her future completely shifted. “I felt as though when I worked at Christie’s a different way of life was opening up to me,” Becker said. “Seton Hall’s museum profession school is accredited and I knew once I finished I would have a new degree under my belt and a more open path for my future.”

Becker said that her day usually starts at 5 a.m. to practice her recorder. “After I practice I go into work at the Technology Department and then a majority of my other time is spent on my school work,” she said.

Becker is currently taking three graduate level classes. She said,“Exhibitions A-Z I helps me to covet my skills as a curator. Whereas Anatomy of Museum and Museum Registration 1 are a backstage pass to understanding how much detail go into museums and how they are organized.”

Jeanne Brasile, Becker’s professor and SHU’s gallery director, explained that Becker is one of the most dynamic students she has had. “One of the first things you notice about her is her energy,” Brasile said.

“She has a very dynamic personality coupled with a curious nature.”

Becker also has a full-time job as a graduate assistant in the university’s technology department. She explained that her work entails making everyone’s schedules, managing 20 students and making sure they are doing their jobs proficiently.

“This job helps me build upon my leadership and communication skills which I will heavily need for my future,” she said.

Joseph Fernandes, a senior public relations major and employee of the Teaching, Learning and Technology Center (TLTC), said that Becker’s unconventional working style helps keep everyone on their toes. “Since the last G.A. Sam has made improvements to the office,” Fernandes said. “The workplace atmosphere is more enjoyable which contributes to work being more high quality.”

Becker said all of the work she does on a daily basis contributes to her future goals. “I eventually would like to curate for galleries and then eventually open my own in the San Francisco area,” she said. “The focus would be on contemporary art but my personal goal in life is to make a difference in the world through cultural appreciation in art. I want to bring people closer together through art.”

“Sam understands art theory – but also the business of art,” Brasile said. “That will make her successful, along with the institutions and audiences she will be serving as a museum professional.”

Becker said she is currently in the process of curating the fall 2019 Walsh Library Gallery.

Zoey Dotson can be reached at

Author: Zoey Dotson

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