An Internship Experience at the Canadian Canoe Museum

My name is Lyndsey and I am currently finishing up my last week of internship at the Canadian Canoe Museum. With a bachelor’s degree in cultural anthropology, I decided to apply to the Museum Management and Curatorship Post-Graduate program at Fleming College. 

Throughout the first two semesters of this program, my classmates and I completed a numerous amount of applied projects and developed a number of museum skills in the process. In the third semester, all students were required to participate in an unpaid fourteen-week internship at a museum site of their choosing. I chose to come to the Canoe Museum because of a story that Jeremy Ward, the Curator, told on a site visit that I attended last fall. It was a story about an Ogilvy canoe in the collection that recalled the Lake Timiskaming tragedy of 1978. Having an affinity towards intangible heritage I was very much inspired by this object-based story, so I decided that I would pursue the internship opportunity that was offered by the Canoe Museum to my classmates and I. 

Throughout these past fourteen weeks I have been able to apply and enhance my understanding of the theoretical and practical skills that I gained in my first two semesters of study. One of the projects that I worked on as an intern was collaborating with the Museum’s Collections Assistant, Jessica Lapp, and Jeremy on a small exhibit installation that celebrates the 400th anniversary of Samuel de Champlain’s visit to Eastern North America.

Beginning Wednesday, August 12, 2015, the public is welcome to come and visit the Grand Portage Gallery at The Canadian Canoe Museum to celebrate the legacy of Samuel de Champlain. The Museum will be offering the public a temporary exhibit that explores Champlain’s accomplishments throughout the encounters he experienced on North American soil.  

Champlain is known as the founder of New France (Quebec), but as you may already be aware, his legacy encompasses a number of other accomplishments that helped shape Canadian society. Travelling back to the year 1615, Champlain is known to have created alliances with First Nations groups, provided aid to these allies in war efforts against the Iroquois, as well as explored Eastern North America’s natural and cultural environment, extensively documenting what he witnessed.

Champlain made a lasting mark on this province, which we still remember and celebrate today.  Come to the Canadian Canoe Museum and learn how First Nations built their dugout canoes using stone tools and why not try your luck at using a 17th century navigation tool, the Astrolabe, while you’re at it! 

The exhibit will run from Wednesday, August 12, 2015 until Monday, October 12th, 2015.