First Week at the Phillips

My first week interning at the Phillips Collection really threw me into museum work in a way that made the space feel like home to me. I’m working in the University of Maryland Center for Art and Knowledge at the Phillips Collection, formerly the Center for the Study of Modern Art. The Center serves as a hub for the museum’s academic and public programming initiatives and is located in the carriage house behind the museum. This cozy space fits nine people (including myself) working on exhibits, academic programming, public programming, the Phillips’ music program, grant writing, and media production. With so much going on in such a small space I’ve learned a lot about the museum in a very short amount of time, and gotten to know many of the people who run various aspects of the museum.

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Abstract: Phillips Collection Internship

Hello! My name is Sarah Farver and I am a rising senior, majoring in History and minoring in Art History, at the College of William & Mary. I am honored to be one of this year’s recipients of the Woody Internship in Museum Studies, and extremely excited to spend the summer interning at the Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C.! As America’s first museum of modern art, the Phillips Collection has a prestigious reputation for housing prominent works from the Impressionist to Abstract Expressionist movements, yet the museum stays true to its original message as it continues promoting contemporary artists and their works. I look forward to working in an art museum that stays in tune with today’s evolving art scene, and seeing how the museum conveys art’s transformations by juxtaposing the old with the new.

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Preparing to Conduct Research in Chaguite, Nicaragua

In the past month I have been working closely with Professor Aday drafting and finalizing interview questions and creating the Women Focus Group Protocol. My goal is to facilitate a conversation at the informal level through the focus group to learn more about women’s roles and utilize the interview questions to ask about women’s involvement and level of participation at the community level. Additionally, I have reviewed pertinent literature about other researchers who have conducted research on women’s participation and involvement at the community level. The literature review on the history and role of women in Nicaragua has also helped situate my research and expand my knowledge on the customs and culture of the Nicaraguan women.
I arrived in Managua yesterday and took the drive to Octotal that same night. Today was prep, I reviewed of the interview schedule and planned for the rest of the week. Tomorrow is when I will be going up the mountain to Chaguite to conduct interviews and meet with the community members. I am excited to get in the field and learn more about women in Nicaragua!

Abstract: Computational Model of NF-κB

Multiple Sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune neurodegenerative disease that cannot be cured. MS causes the body’s own immune system to attack the axons of neurons, disrupting communication between the brain and the body. The result is symptoms in patients like demyelination, loss of muscle coordination, and vision loss. NF-κB (Nuclear factor kappa B) is a transcriptional factor widely known as the centerpiece of transcriptional regulation for inflammatory and autoimmune pathways. The cyclical nature of NF-κB and its pivotal role in the disease makes it a prime candidate to study using a computational approach. Using kinetics data and molecular biology studies, an accurate model of the exact role that NF-κB plays in the disease can be created. This model is malleable not only to mitigating disease factors, but also to a wide variety of treatments that can alter the general state of the disease. The goal of the project is to produce a finished model of the large network of related proteins and cells and to program the kinetics in MATLAB to study the potential of targeting the NF-κB pathway for treatment.

Abstract: Non-Cognitive Skills Impact Evaluation


This summer I will be spending six weeks in Monrovia, Liberia assisting with conducting an impact evaluation on the nascent Monrovia Football Academy. Specifically, I aim to test whether the Academy fosters positive non-cognitive skills among its students, such as more trust for interethnic-students, or simply more prosocial behaviors. I will utilize behavioral outcomes to measure these factors, as many impact evaluations are limited by their dependence on surveys and interviews.

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