Program Archive

Date:Tuesday, May 2, 2017, 5:45 - 7:45pm
Title:Walking the Talk: Museums Lead the Way on the Path of Social Justice
Location:University of San Francisco (USF), Cowell Hall, Room 106 (Lower Campus, between Fulton and Golden Gate Avenues)
Cost:Free for members and USF Community, $15 for non-members

As the demographics of California continue to shift dramatically, museums must ensure we actively and intentionally engage with our diverse communities. 

Our program features museums that have successfully collaborated with their communities to promote dialogue around the topics of diversity, race, and inclusion. Join us and hear these museum success stories and learn implementation strategies for your museum. Our panelists include:

  • Rene de Guzman, Senior Curator of Art, Oakland Museum of California. Curator for All Power to the People.
  • Laura Callen, Founder and Director, Adoption Museum Project: Co-curator of Operation Babylift, in partnership with the Presidio Trust.
  • Kilani Louis, Program Manager, Proud of my Family theme weekend celebrating LGBTQ families at the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose.
  • Jamie Lee Evans, Co-Founder and Co-Director of the Foster Youth Museum, in partnership with USF.

The event will be moderated by Tom Izu, Executive Director of the California History Center Foundation and Audrey Edna Butcher Civil Liberties Education Initiative, De Anza College.

A reception will follow from 8-9 pm in Thacher Gallery, located in Gleeson Library/Geschke Center, at 2495 Golden Gate Avenue.

Co-sponsored by University of San Francisco’s Museum Studies Master’s Program. Special thanks to Dr. Paula Birnbaum, Academic Director.

Date:Thursday, March 16, 2017, 4:30 - 7:00 p.m.
Title:Museum Exhibitions-Thinking Outside the Box
Location:California Academy of Sciences

Engage, excite, educate. Museum exhibitions must address wide-ranging goals.

Our March 2017 program features people who collaborate to create exhibitions. Come hear their stories about how they work with museum staff to create an exhibition’s story employing out-of-the box thinking and strategies.

Each panelist will present a case study focusing on a specific exhibition. A discussion of trends shaping the future of museum exhibitions will follow.

Registrants are invited to stay after the program to enjoy Cal Academy’s NightLife for free (must be 21+ years, IDs will be checked.
www.calacademy.org/nightlife/nocturnal-nightlife 

There will be a meet up in the Academy’s Cafe where drinks can be purchased and conversation can continue.

 

Date:Thursday, January 19, 2017, 6:00pm
Title:Cafe Connections: Lessons Learned on New Approaches
Location:Hearst Museum, UC Berkeley
Cost:Free for members, $15 for non-members

Join us this January for a series of short talks with colleagues behind our newest museum openings to explore the newest methods around the Bay Area, followed by further conversations with a warm drink at a nearby cafe.

These smaller session will focus on a one-hour tour at three different locations within the month followed by an informal meet up to continue the conversation.

This is a new, informal program at three locations for the price of one event. Members are free, $15 for non-members.

 

January 12, 6:00pm
Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive
Join us at the newly renovated UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive. BAMPFA showcases international works of art and film from the leading edge while also presenting historical works in meaningful contexts. We’ll experience a brief tour of the galleries, which include works by Andy Warhol, Michael Armitage, Ana Mendieta, and Tibetan Buddhist art. Then we’ll drop in at the Reading Room and Art Lab, a space dedicated to an evolving series of hands-on projects.

January 18th, 6:00pm
Hearst Museum of Anthropology, UC Berkeley

Join us for a special sneak peak into the new gallery space to learn how the exhibition and interpretation team had to rethink their entire space to tell the story around their opening exhibition.
6:00 – 7:00: Special tour of the gallery with Adam Nilsen
7:00 – 8:00: Join us as Strada Cafe with Adam to continue the conversation!

January 19th, 5:30pm (limited to 15)
SFMOMA

With its expansion in 2016, SFMOMA introduced three new Interpretive Galleries–permanent spaces devoted to digital interpretation. Cross-departmental teams collaborated to conceive and design the spaces, and craft media and stories that aim to demystify the artworks on view. Staff from the museum’s Interpretive Media team will give a tour of the Interpretive Galleries and provide insights into the ideas and goals behind each space, and some of the lessons learned.
5:30 – 6:30: Special tour of the Interpretive Galleries.
6:30 – 7:30: Join us for a drink nearby to continue the conversation!

Date:Thursday, December 15, 2016, Connections: Year-End Get Together
Title:Connections: Year-End Get Together
Location:SeaGlass Restaurant, Exploratorium
Cost:Free for all Members and Non-members

Please join us at Exploratorium’s SeaGlass Restaurant for our Year-End get together. With light facilitation to meet new people to expand your network, enjoy drinks and snacks from the restaurant and later, enjoy Exploratium’s After Dark events (extra charges apply). Let’s enter the year on a Connected note!

Date:Tuesday, September 20, 2016
Title:Stay tuned for more information about our upcoming programs!

Stay tuned for more information about our upcoming programs!

Register for our mailing list here: http://cultural-connections.org/contact-us

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Follow us on Twitter! https://twitter.com/BayAreaMuseums

Join us on LinkedIn! https://www.linkedin.com/company/cultural-connections-bay-area

Date:Saturday, September 10, 2016
Title:Design Thinking Workshop with Dana Mitroff Silvers

Save the date! The workshop is rescheduled for September 10, 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM. Registration will open later in the summer.

Date:Monday, June 13, 2016, 5:30 pm
Title:The Future of Digital Preservation and Access
Location:Autodesk
Cost:$15 for non-members, free for Cultural Connections Members

The modern age is characterized by the increasing use and comfort with digital technology. As a result, museums and other cultural institutions are changing how the public interacts with and views the objects and places which, in the past, could only be visited in person. How are these organizations taking the exhibition and preservation of their subject matter to the next level? What are the ramifications of these changes for those who work in and visit our places of cultural and scientific importance? Is digital preservation the only way to preserve our legacy for future generations?

Join us as we explore these questions and more on our interdisciplinary panel.

We are pleased to have the following speakers:

Tatjana Dzambazova, Senior Product Manager Autodesk
Creating partnerships with organizations and communities around interpretation, archaeology, anthropology, and the museum world as a whole.

Jonathan Lee, Head of Digital Experience- Asian Art Museum.
Using photogrammetry to 3D model their masterpiece objects to create visitor engagement and expand on the future potential for conservation.

Olivia Dill, IRENE project, UC Berkeley
Digitally preserving and archiving the history of sound recordings (including paper, discs, and cylinders).

Heather Yager, Head Librarian- Cal. Academy
Linking digitized text, photo, and specimen collections on the web to facilitate further research

 

 

Date:Saturday, April 23, 2016, 9am - 12pm
Title:Postponed: Design Thinking Workshop with Dana Mitroff Silvers
Location:John F. Kennedy University, Berkeley Campus
Cost:$30 for members, $40 for non-members

Update, 4/15/2016: This program has been postponed due to an emergency.  We will work with Dana Mitroff Silvers to reschedule, possibly for this summer.  No new registrations/wait list attendees will be accepted at this point.  If you have registered, please see your email.  If you registered and did not get an email, please let us know: info@cultural-conenctions.org

We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.

—–

Join Cultural Connections for a design thinking workshop with Dana Mitroff Silvers!

Design thinking is a human-centered process for problem solving and innovation. In this workshop, participants will be introduced to design thinking through a hands-on, highly interactive experience. Attendees will learn how to apply selected tools and methods of the design thinking framework, including empathy interviewing, problem definition, rapid prototyping, and user testing. The workshop is appropriate for museum staff at all organizational levels who develop, design, or manage visitor-facing programs, products, or experiences.

Space is limited, so register today!  We will have a wait list if the workshop fills up.  A light breakfast and snacks will be provided.

Visit http://designinginsights.com for more information about Dana and her process.

A special thank you to John F. Kennedy University for their support and for hosting our workshop!

Date:Thursday, December 3, 2015, Program: 1:30-5 pm, see schedule for specifics
Title:Program Full! DIY Evaluation
Location:Asian Art Museum
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

We have reached our limit for registrations.  If you did not pre-register, we cannot guarantee entrance to the program, but will allow people in if we have no-shows.

Evaluating programs and exhibits is invaluable and can lead to impactful experiences, increased participation, and create buy-in from colleagues and stakeholders. Even though time is crunched and funds may be tight, you can learn to sustainably create and manage useful evaluation projects through practice designing, conducting, and analyzing data with low-cost, do-it-yourself evaluation methods. Then, begin developing strategies to test for the change, growth or support your programs need. This workshop will be led by a diverse group of educators and evaluators from surrounding Bay Area Informal Education organizations. Participants will have the opportunity to work on development of an evaluation of their choice with the support of the presenters and other workshop attendees. If you have a project that needs to be evaluated, bring some ideas and get started on your evaluation!

Following the workshop, join us for a tour of the Asian Art Museum’s prototyping gallery. The Asian Art Museum is inviting visitors to test out and provide feedback on new interpretive experiences related to our permanent collection. During this time period, the Tateuchi Gallery will be transformed into a prototyping lab, where the museum will be featuring mock-ups of new interpretive approaches for looking at and interacting with artworks. Visitors will be invited to try out these experiences and provide feedback to shape the future of the museum.

Operation Babylift: Perspectives and Legacies (http://www.presidioofficersclub.com/exhibits/special-exhibits/) explores the diverse experiences and lasting impacts of a dramatic airlift that removed more than 2,000 Vietnamese children from their war-torn country to be adopted by American families as Saigon fell in 1975. This special exhibition and public program series is co-curated by the Presidio Trust and the Adoption Museum Project, and was shaped by input from over 40 community contributors. An evaluation of the exhibition, developed  collaboratively by the co-curators, aims to gather both quantitative and qualitative information about the visitor experience, and assess how that aligns with outcomes identified during concept development. Exhibition curators and other team members discuss the development and implementation of two DIY evaluation projects: a visitor tracking and timing study, and an analysis of reflection cards shared by visitors.

After the program ends at 5 pm, please join us for happy hour to continue the conversation.  We will head over to The Beer Hall, 1 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

Schedule:
1:30pm – Welcome and Overview
1:40pm – Introduction to Evaluation from Maia Werner-Avidon
2:00pm – Case Study: The Adoption Project & Presidio Trust
2:30pm – Small Group Workshop
3:45pm – End
4:00pm – Visit the Asian Art Museum’s Prototyping Gallery
5:00pm – Join us for Happy Hour at: The Beer Hall, 1 Polk Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

Presenters’ Bios:

Maia Werner-Avidon is the Manager of Research and Evaluation at the Asian Art Museum. She manages all in-house research and evaluation projects, including visitor exit surveys, special exhibition evaluation, and testing of new interpretive approaches for special exhibitions and the permanent collection. Previously, Maia was a Research & Evaluation Specialist at the Lawrence Hall of Science, where she led evaluation projects for a wide range of informal science programs, exhibits, and websites at the Hall and for external clients.

Laura Callen is the Founder and Director of the Adoption Museum Project (http://www.adoptionmuseumproject.org). The Adoption Museum Project is creating the first museum to explore the subject of adoption. Our mission is to catalyze conversations that help create social change, so that all people involved in adoption experience justice and dignity. Laura lives and works in Berkeley, CA. You can reach her at laura@adoptionmuseumproject.org.

Liz Noelani Clevenger is the Curator of the Heritage Program at the Presidio Trust in San Francisco, CA. Through research, exhibitions, and programming, the Heritage Program showcases the Presidio’s role in shaping and serving California and the nation. Special exhibitions at the Presidio Officers’ Club explore fresh perspectives on how and why the past matters, and inspire civic engagement by fostering an understanding of the ways in which the Presidio’s heritage is relevant today.

Lacey Lieberthal is currently pursuing a dual Masters’ degree in Museum Studies and Business Administration from John F. Kennedy University. Through this program, she is an intern with the Adoption Museum Project, performing an evaluation project in content analysis of visitor reflection cards. Gaining varied experience in museum and non-profit practices, Lacey is the administrative assistant at The Society of California Pioneers Museum & Library in the Presidio of San Francisco. You can reach her at laceylieberthal@gmail.com.

Wenonah Nelson is a Heritage Program Exhibition Intern for the Presidio Trust located in San Francisco, where she has researched and developed  the Tracking and Timing Study. In addition to evaluation, her work includes the maintenance of current exhibitions and the development of future exhibitions. Previously, she earned her M.A. in Museum Studies from New York University while working in exhibitions for the National September 11th Memorial and Museum.

Follow Up Materials

Thank you all for attending!  If you were unable to attend, we have added some resources to this shared folder on Google Drive.  The audio is in the folder, and also posted on our YouTube Channel.

Shared Folder

Audio Part 1 of 2 — Introduction to Evaluation (Maia Werner-Avidon) and Case Study of Adoption Museum

Audio Part 2 of 2 — Data Analysis (Wendy Meluch)

Date:Wednesday, October 14, 2015, 3:00 - 5:00
Title:Planning for Financial Sustainability
Location:Children's Creativity Museum
Cost:Cost: $15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Museums and other cultural organizations are evolving how they define and plan for a sustainable future. They are looking for new ways to fundraise and remain relevant to the audiences they serve. How do museums plan for a sustainable future in terms of financial stability?

Join us for a look at emerging trends in fundraising and development. Our panel of professionals includes Jay Auslander, Director of Gift Planning at the California Academy of Sciences; Jeri Boomgaarden, Director of Donor Servicing and Administrative Support at the East Bay Community Foundation; Elizabeth Minor PhD, Development Associate at the Hearst Museum of Anthropology; and Rebecca Ratzkin, Senior Consultant at WolfBrown.

Panelists will discuss successes and challenges in implementing new fundraising trends including crowdfunding and day-of-giving campaigns. Also, we will learn about millennial donor trends, gift acceptance policies, and donor responses to divestitures from fossil fuels.

Before the program: Visit the museum’s new Robot Coding exhibit. Complimentary admission for Cultural Connections program participants is available beginning at 2:00 p.m.

After the program: Join us at the B Restaurant and Bar to continue the discussion (720 Howard Street).

Jay Auslander, Associate Director, Gift Planning for the California Academy of Sciences is an attorney specializing in gift planning. He works with donors interested in some of the trickier mechanisms of philanthropy, working with wills, trusts and gifts of more complicated assets like art, homes and the occasional scientific collection. Jay graduated from law school in Arizona (his home state) in 2001 and moved to the Bay Area where he started his career at UC Berkeley in the area of planned giving. He continued on this path while working with SF State and the poverty fighting organization CARE. He is currently on the board of Friends of the Public Library and the San Francisco Arts Commission Gallery.

Jeri Boomgaarden is the Director of Donor Services and Administrative Support at the East Bay Community Foundation in Oakland. She is primarily responsible for driving donor engagement and donor services with individual and institutional clients who hold funds managed by the Foundation. She manages a staff of five in providing administrative support and planning for Foundation events. Prior to joining EBCF in 2012, Jeri enjoyed an 18 year career with the Clorox Company. Jeri’s team has refined all grant making procedures, fund management and created a COE (Center of Excellence) for the Foundation. Under her direction, the DSAS team leads East Bay Gives and has been recognized by Give Local America for the program’s success and tremendous growth. In 2015, EBCF tripled the number of dollars raised over 2014.

Elizabeth Minor, PhD is Development Associate at the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology. She fell in love with archaeology as a child when poring over photographs of Tutankhamun’s tomb. She remembers touring the Hearst Museum basement with her mother and wanting to know what was in every cabinet. While a graduate student at Cal she had the chance to find out while working on many registration and photography projects for the Reisner Egyptian archaeology collections. Her work at the Hearst Museum has been a whirlwind tour of the rest of the world as projects have introduced her to objects from Africa, Asia, Europe, Oceania and beyond. She has excavated in Sudan, Egypt and California—specializing in database design, digital asset management, and advanced imaging techniques. Her research, which looks at the socio-political use of object collection and display in ancient Nubia (Kerma), greatly informs her approach to the creation of accessible and engaged museum resources for modern audiences.

Rebecca Ratzkin is a senior consultant in WolfBrown’s San Francisco office. She has led donor and customer segmentation studies in the theatre, opera, orchestra and multidisciplinary presenting fields, and is co-author of WolfBrown’s 2011 publication, “Making Sense of Audience Engagement.” Rebecca is currently directing a capacity building initiative around the collection and application of audience feedback in the Bay Area, a community-led study around creative capacity in Santa Barbara, and baseline and evaluative research for Pacific Symphony’s Engaging Chinese American Communities project.

Slides:

Audio: https://youtu.be/18NuP96410M

Date:Tuesday, June 9, 2015, 4-5 pm: Self tour; 5-7:30 pm: Program/Networking
Title:Inspiring Science and Math Learning
Location:Lawrence Hall of Science
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members; Complimentary admission to view the Hall's exhibits (4-5 pm); FREE admission for current LHS staff

UC Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science – A University Museum Case Study

University museums are noteworthy for their location, resources, audience, and academic prestige. Join us June 9 “up on the hill” at UC Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science for a rare opportunity to learn what it’s like running one of the Bay Area’s most beloved public science centers. Founded in 1968 in honor of Cal’s first Nobel laureate Ernest Orlando Lawrence, the Hall has attracted visitors for generations through its hands-on exhibits, curriculum design, and professional development. Find out what excites current staff about STEM education and new technologies, and how this university museum is uniquely equipped to serve students of ALL ages.

Featured Speakers

  • Craig Strang, Associate Director, Lawrence Hall of Science
  • Monika Mayer, Director of Ingenuity Programs at the Lawrence Hall of Science
  • Lisa Newton, Associate Research & Evaluation Specialist, Research Group at Lawrence Hall of Science
  • Darrell Porcello, Director, Center for Technology Innovation at the Lawrence Hall of Science
  • Suzy Loper, Curriculum Co-Director, Learning Design Group at the Lawrence Hall of Science
  • Lauren Friedband, Assistant Director of Marketing, Moderator

Schedule:

4:00-5:00 pm: Participants self tour the Hall
5:00-6:30 pm: Program in the 3d Theater
6:30-7:30 pmNetworking and Refreshments

Date:Tuesday, April 21, 2015, Tour at 3 pm, Program 4-6 pm
Title:Meet up at the SS Jeremiah O'Brien
Location:SS Jeremiah O'Brien, Pier 45, San Francisco
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Meet up with your peers at Pier 45 on the SS Jeremiah O’Brien!
The SS Jeremiah O’Brien is one of two remaining fully functional Liberty ships of the 2,710 built and launched during World War II. The O’Brien has the distinction of being the last unaltered Liberty ship and remains historically accurate. It is the largest triple-expansion steam engine working in the world, and was the engine in the movie Titanic. Moored at Pier 45, Fisherman’s Wharf, she is a premier San Francisco attraction.

From 2:00-3:00  Tour the Maritime Museum’s new exhibits located in the lower level of the Hazlett Warehouse. Curator, Richard Everett, will be on hand to guide you

From 3:00-4:00 Come aboard the SS Jeremiah O’Brien and tour the ship.

From 4:00-6:00 Join in a discussion with other museum professionals focusing on the opportunities and challenges facing various sized historic sites, houses, and ships.

At 6:00 Walk over to the nearby Gold Dust Lounge for a no-host casual gathering to keep the conversation going.

Accessibility: The ship is a registered National Historic Landmark and is not permitted to alter the original 1943 vessel except for safety as required by the USCG.  There are a gangplank and stairs to negotiate, and no elevators or lifts are available.  If you have questions about the ship’s accessibility, please contact info@cultural-connections.org

Transit/Parking Information and Directions

Attendees are encouraged to take public transportation or carpool.
Limited free parking will be available near the SS Jeremiah O’Brien (see map for directions).

Public Transit: http://511.org

Paid Parking: Public parking

Map to the SS Jeremiah O’Brien parking and the Maritime Museum (PDF)
Driving/walking directions to the SS Jeremiah O’Brien parking and the Maritime Museum (PDF)

The ship is located near the intersection of The Embarcadero and Taylor Street.  From there, walk around the Eastern side of Shed A/Musee Mecanique to the ship.
https://www.google.com/maps/place/The+Embarcadero+%26+Taylor+St,+San+Francisco,+CA+94133/@37.808985,-122.415845,16z/data=!4m2!3m1!1s0x808580e254427da3:0xc2fb0a9249db110a?hl=en-US

Date:Tuesday, February 3, 2015, 4:30–6:00 pm
Title:Distance Learning and Museums
Location:California Academy of Sciences, Board Room, 75 Nancy Pelosi Drive, Golden Gate Park
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join us for a discussion at the Cal Academy. Hear from Bay Area speakers about their experiences, misconceptions and successes with powerful examples of 21st century learning and audience engagement.

Onsite Program Details:

Date: Tuesday, February 3, 2015
Time: 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM (check-in starts at 3:30 PM)
Location: California Academy of Sciences, Board Room
(use the Research entrance at the back of the building at 75 Nancy Pelosi Drive)
Cost: $15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members
Comps for the Cal Academy will be available on a first-come, first-served basis
Directions and Parking: http://www.calacademy.org/getting-here

Confirmed Speakers:

Heather Holm, Program Coordinator, Northern California, will discuss the highly acclaimed and award winning virtual fieldtrip model created by the California State Parks Services. Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS) Distance Learning Program. Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS™) is a distance learning program that connects K-12 public school students in their classroom to a California State Park interpreter through interactive videoconferencing for an engaging educational program on California’s rich natural and cultural resources.

Karen Wilkinson, Director, Tinkering Studio, Exploratorium, will share her experiences developing the Tinkering Fundamentals: A Constructionist Approach to STEM Learning Course for an online distance learning giant, Coursera. Coursera provides universal access to the world’s best education, partnering with top universities and organizations to offer courses for anyone to take, for free and has begun a new initiative of partnering with informal institutions such as MOMA, Exploratorium, and a handful of others.

Stephanie Pau, currently back in the Bay Area as Content Producer, Mobile Interpretive Media at SFMOMA, after four years (2010-2014) as part of the Interpretation & Research team at MoMA, New York. During her time at MoMA, Stephanie collaborated with colleagues in the School & Teacher and Digital Learning teams to develop a wide variety of digital learning initiatives. She will speak about her work on MoMA Learning, an online learning resource for teachers and lifelong learners; her experience as a co-instructor for the Coursera MOOC “Art & Activity: Interactive Strategies for Engaging with Art”; and the development of “Art Hangs with MoMA Learning,” a series of education-minded Google+ Hangouts on Air.

Kathryn Danielson, Teacher Education Specialist at the Cal Academy. At the Academy, Kathryn develops professional learning experiences around inquiry-based science teaching, along with the Next Generation Science Standards, for preK-12 teachers and administrators. In addition, she developed educational supplements for the California Academy of Science’s Biodiversity course on the Khan Academy. Kathryn has both formal and informal classroom experience, having taught K through college-level science curricula.

Presentations:

Exploratorium Presentation

Cal Academy Presentation

Date:Wednesday, January 28, 2015, Webinar: 1:00 PST
Title:Distance Learning and Museums: webinar and onsite program
Location:Onsite program: February 3 at Cal Academy (4:30 - 6:00)

Take a deep dive into distance learning with Cultural Connections this Winter 2015 with a two-part discussion about how museums are using distance learning to reach audiences.

On January 28 we kicked off with a webinar to provide a national vantage point. Anne Kraybill of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art was the guest speaker. Find the link to the recorded webinar on the Cultural Connections Facebook page.

Onsite Program Details

On February 3, join us for a follow-up discussion at the Cal Academy. Hear from Bay Area speakers about their experiences, misconceptions and successes with powerful examples of 21st century learning and audience engagement. Onsite program details:

Date: Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Time: 4:30 PM – 6:00 PM (check-in starts at 3:30 PM)

Location: California Academy of Sciences, Board Room (use the Research entrance at the back of the building at 75 Nancy Pelosi Drive)

Cost: $15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Comp entry for the Cal Academy will be available at 3:30.

Directions and parking: http://www.calacademy.org/getting-here

Confirmed Speakers:

Heather Holm, Program Coordinator, Northern California, will discuss the highly acclaimed and award winning virtual fieldtrip model created by the California State Parks Services. Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS) Distance Learning Program. Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS™) is a distance learning program that connects K-12 public school students in their classroom to a California State Park interpreter through interactive videoconferencing for an engaging educational program on California’s rich natural and cultural resources.

Karen Wilkinson, Director, Tinkering Studio, Exploratorium, will share her experiences developing the Tinkering Fundamentals: A Constructionist Approach to STEM Learning Course for a online distance learning giant, Coursera. Coursera provides universal access to the world’s best education, partnering with top universities and organizations to offer courses for anyone to take, for free and has begun a new initiative of partnering with informal institutions such as MOMA, Exploratorium, and a handful of others.

Stephanie Pau, currently back in the Bay Area as Content Producer, Mobile Interpretive Media at SFMOMA, after four years (2010-2014) as part of the Interpretation & Research team at MoMA, New York. During her time at MoMA, Stephanie collaborated with colleagues in the School & Teacher and Digital Learning teams to develop a wide variety of digital learning initiatives. She will speak about her work on MoMA Learning, an online learning resource for teachers and lifelong learners; her experience as a co-instructor for the Coursera MOOC “Art & Activity: Interactive Strategies for Engaging with Art”; and the development of “Art Hangs with MoMA Learning,” a series of education-minded Google+ Hangouts on Air.

Kathryn Danielson, Teacher Education Specialist at the Cal Academy. At the Academy, Kathryn develops professional learning experiences around inquiry-based science teaching, along with the Next Generation Science Standards, for preK-12 teachers and administrators. In addition, she developed educational supplements for the California Academy of Science’s Biodiversity course on the Khan Academy. Kathryn has both formal and informal classroom experience, having taught K through college-level science curricula.

Date:Wednesday, December 10, 2014, 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Title:Activism, Relevancy, and Community Engagement
Location:The Lab, San Francisco

How are museums and cultural organizations endeavoring to engage their communities on issues of equity and sustainability? Are our institutions viewed with greater value when we take stands on substantial and timely issues – and what risks do we face? What impact can it have on the organization, our audiences, and the issues we seek to address? Hear how Monterey Bay Aquarium, Oakland Museum of California, The Lab, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, and the California Academy of Sciences have tackled these and related questions

Please bring burning questions and thoughts to stoke the fire of a group discussion!

Following the program, toast to the close of 2014 and continue the conversation over refreshments.

Note: The space may be chilly, you may want to consider bringing something warm to wear.

Evening Schedule:

4:30: Check in begins

5-6:30: Presentations and discussion

6:30-8: Reception

Confirmed speakers:

The Lab has been undergoing renovations, come check out their new look! In the meantime, check out their timelapse video: http://www.thelab.org/schedule/events/750-stay-tuned-4.html

 

Speaker Bios:

Dr. Jonathan Foley, Executive Director of the California Academy of Sciences, is steering the Academy through an exciting chapter in its 160-year history, leading its efforts to explore and explain the natural world while addressing critical sustainability challenges. An expert in ecosystem science and sustainability, his work has contributed to our understanding of worldwide changes in ecosystems, land use and climate, global food security, and the sustainability of the world’s resources. This work has led Foley to become a trusted advisor to governments, environmental groups, foundations, non-governmental organizations, and business leaders around the world. Foley joined the Academy in 2014, after spending over two decades leading interdisciplinary, university-based programs focused on global environmental issues.

Raquel Gutiérrez is the YBCA In Community Program Manager for Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. She facilitates artists, community members, and partner organizations in producing artistic inquiry in community-relevant collaborative environments in historically rich neighborhoods such as the Mission District and West Oakland. Originally from Los Angeles, Raquel has long been a writer, live performer, film actor, curator, publisher (Econo Textual Objects, established 2014), playwright, arts administrator, and cultural organizer. She writes on art, culture, music, film, performance and community building and creates original solo and ensemble performance compositions. Raquel earned her MA in Performance Studies from New York University in 2004. She has lived in 3 places in the 18 months of living in the Bay Area and wonders when she’ll have to move again.

Cynthia Taylor is Associate Director of Public Programs at the Oakland Museum of California. Cynthia oversees interdisciplinary public and community engagement programs that serve California and Oakland’s diverse communities. Taylor facilitates new approaches to producing 21st-century programs such as dynamic public forums,
celebrations, outreach activities, and other endeavors that integrate with the Museum’s collections and temporary exhibitions, California themes, and real-time urgent issues affecting Oakland. Her 22-year career includes experience in organizational change, community engagement, and the visual and performing arts. She completed the LeaderSpring Leadership Fellowship in Oakland, CA, and holds a BA from San Francisco State University in Classical Voice/Vocal Performance and Arts Administration.

Mary Whaley has been the Teacher Programs Manager at the Monterey Bay Aquarium since 2008. Her team reaches over 1,000 teachers yearly through conferences, long-term teacher institutes and workshops. She engages teachers in incorporating authentic science processes into the classroom through experiential learning, collaborations with scientists, and field experiences. She currently serves on the California State Teachers Association Board of Directors as the Informal Science Education Director.

Presentations:
Thank you to the speakers for allowing us to post their presentations!

Date:Tuesday, October 14, 2014, 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Title:Maker Spaces
Location:The Tech Museum of Innovation
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

The “Maker” movement is a do-it-yourself, design and fabrication movement that is rapidly spreading around the world.  Maker Spaces, community centers where makers can learn, design, and fabricate, are also spreading rapidly.  Join us to learn about several maker spaces in the Bay Area and explore the variety of ways this exciting movement can be implemented.

The Tech Museum  Tech Studio – http://www.thetech.org/plan-your-visit/galleries/tech-studio

The Tech Museum Hands On Science Workshophttp://www.thetech.org/plan-your-visit/galleries/hands-science-workshop

Palo Alto MakeX Teen Mobile Makerspace: http://www.cityofpaloalto.org/gov/depts/lib/teens/makex.asp

Oakland Museum of California we/customize: http://www.cityofpaloalto.org/gov/depts/lib/teens/makex.asp

Speakers:

Danny Haeg, Tech Studio Manager and Exhibit Prototyper, and Prinda Wanakule, Educational Programs Manager, The Tech Museum of Innovation

Karen Kienzle, Director, Palo Alto Art Center

Sean Olson, Research and Experience Developer, Oakland Museum of California

Presentations:
If you were unable to attend the program, here are some of the presentations. Thank you to the speakers for allowing us to share this information!

The Tech Museum of Innovation Presentation

Palo Alto MakeX Presentation

Oakland Museum of California Presentation

Date:Wednesday, June 11, 2014, 5:00-8:00 pm
Title:A Case Study of the Global Studios Department at the Exploratorium
Location:Exploratorium
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join us for an evening with the Global Studios department from the Exploratorium. Global Studios offers the Exploratorium’s expertise, programs, and exhibits, tailored to the needs of different projects or organizations. Rather than exporting or cloning the Exploratorium, Global Studios works closely with clients and partners to understand and address unique goals.

Partners include local and national governments, universities, museums, libraries, hospitals, and corporations as well as other public and private entities around the world.

5:00 – 6:00pm – Light snacks, drinks, and networking
6:00 – 8:00pm – Talk in the Forum

If you would like to come visit the museum prior to the event, we have 50 reserved spaces from 3:00 – 5:00pm. First come, first served.

This program is presented in partnership with the Bay Area Emerging Museum Professionals.

Date:Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 4:00 - 6:00 pm
Title:Leadership in the 21st Century: Connecting Vision to Practical Strategies
Location:Asian Art Museum
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join in a discussion with Gail Anderson about the shift in museum leadership needed to create resilient and sustainable institutions. Gail will share her insights and observations, and engage the audience in a dialogue about leadership for the future.

Gail Anderson is president of Gail Anderson & Associates (GA&A), a museum management consulting firm working with museums, cultural institutions, and associations on strategic planning, and institutional transformation. With over thirty-­five years of experience, Anderson has held numerous professional positions, published extensively, and presented at professional conferences internationally. She is the author and editor of the second edition of the 2012 AltaMira Press publication, Reinventing the Museum: The Evolving Conversation on the Paradigm Shift.

Visit the Asian Art Museum’s new exhibition, Yoga: The Art of Transformation. On the day of this program, the museum will be providing complementary admission to program attendees starting at 3pm.

Public transport and parking information

Register for this program

Date:Wednesday, February 12, 2014, 6:00-8:00 pm
Title:Education Partners: Aligning informal education with the common core
Location:Museum of the African Diaspora
Cost:Free for Cultural Connections members; $15 for non-members

Join us for a discussion of how museums can create great programs for K-12 teachers, and how the standards, particularly the common core, are used in classrooms. This discussion will feature case studies of informal education programs that have successfully met the needs of both museums and teachers.

Speakers for this program include museum educators and K-12 teachers who will discuss programs by the Museum of the African Diaspora, the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose, and the Asian Art Museum.

Date:Wednesday, December 11, 2013, 4-6 pm
Title:Above and Below: Stories From Our Changing Bay Exhibition and Conversation with OMCA
Location:Oakland Museum of California

Join us for a conversation with the team that designed, built, researched, and curated this new exhibition at the Oakland Museum of California. Hear about their thinking behind its creation, lessons they learned, and surprising insight into what they did and why they did it.

About the exhibition:

Above and Below: Stories From Our Changing Bay unveils the quirky stories of how people and nature together have shaped the San Francisco Bay Area over the last 6,000 years. The first major exhibition to be presented with all three of OMCA’s transformed galleries of California Art, History, and Natural Sciences open to the public, the exhibition highlights historic and contemporary place-based stories about the Bay, and engages viewers in discussions about the Bay’s future. Through an extensive use of media featuring oral histories, community voices, and interactives, the exhibition explores how human engineering and natural forces have come together over time to shape and reshape the land and water around the San Francisco Bay, and how sea-level rise, wetlands restoration, invasive species, and climate change are central topics in determining the future of the Bay.

Admission: Free for Cultural Connections members; $15 for non-members.

Please RSVP by email to info@cultural-connections.org.

Date:Wednesday, October 9, 2013, 7-9 pm
Title:Engaging the whole family: Building multigenerational audiences
Location:Palo Alto Arts Center
Cost:Free for Cultural Connections members; $15 for non-members

How can museums provide meaningful experiences that welcome families? Museums of all types are developing new models to that allow families and multigenerational groups to engage in rewarding experiences together. Join us for presentations by staff from the Palo Alto Art Center and the Exploratorium, and learn how these and other museums are experimenting with unique and innovative programs that engage the whole family.

6:30 – 7 pm: Check-in
7 – 8:15 pm: Panel discussion
8:15 – 9 pm: Refreshments and networking

Date:Thursday, June 6, 2013, 4 - 6 pm
Title:Leadership for the 21st Century: Connecting Vision to Practical Strategies
Location:San Francisco
Cost:Free for Cultural Connections members; $15 for non-members

Join in a discussion with Gail Anderson about how museum leadership and staff can work to effectively address the myriad of issues, both internal and external, that our cultural institutions face today.

Gail Anderson is president of Gail Anderson & Associates (GA&A), a museum management consulting firm working with museums, cultural institutions, and associations on strategic planning and institutional transformation. With over thirty-five years of experience, Anderson has held numerous professional positions, published extensively, and presented at professional conferences internationally. She is the author and editor of the March 2012 AltaMira Press publication, Reinventing the Museum: The Evolving Conversation on the Paradigm Shift.

Date:Wednesday, April 10, 2013, 4-6 pm
Title:Mobile Interpretation
Location:The Tech Museum
Cost:Free for Cultural Connections members; $15 for non-members

 

Dive into the who, what, where, when, and how of mobile technology in museum interpretation. Speakers from the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the Tech Museum of Innovation, SFMOMA, and Accenture will present case studies on using mobile technology to create unique visitor experiences both within and outside the walls of a museum.

Featured speakers:

  • Lath Carlson, Vice President of Exhibits, The Tech Museum of Innovation
  • Rob Casselman, Senior Manager of Network Enabled Solutions, Accenture
  • Kathryn Jaller, New Media Manager, Contemporary Jewish Museum
  • Tim Svenonius, Producer of Interpretive Media, SFMOMA
Date:Thursday, February 7, 2013, 4-6:30 pm
Title:Beyond Borders: International Museum Initiatives
Location:University of San Francisco, McLaren 250 and Thacher Gallery
Cost:$15 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members and University of San Francisco students and employees

This program is presented by Cultural Connections and University of San Francisco’s newly-inaugurated Museum Studies Graduate Program.

Commercial enterprise, political freedom, religious diversity. It can be said that these vital American characteristics help to shape our nation’s museums. How do these values play out in museums around the globe? What happens when American museum professionals – immersed in these values – work with museums in other nations? In this program, University of San Francisco faculty will share their recent work in Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.

4pm – 5:15pm: Presentations and Discussion in McLaren 250

5:20pm – 6:30: Reception and light refreshments in Thacher Gallery, Gleeson Library. You will have the opportunity to experience the exhibition, “Active Synchrony: New Work byTahiti Pehrson.”

Directions, parking, and transit info >>

Speakers:

John Zarobell, a former curator at SFMOMA, will discuss the international phenomenon of commercial Art Fairs and their impact on museums; Elisabeth Cornu, former conservator at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and now working extensively in Latin America, will share examples of the challenges of conservation in that region; and Paula Birnbaum, Academic Director of USF’s Museum Studies program, will speak about how Orthodox Jewish women in Israel are exhibiting artwork in museums that challenges fundamentalist religious practices. Marjorie Schwarzer, who has recently completed museum projects in the United Arab Emirates and Japan will moderate, and invite you to share your own international projects and experiences.

Follow links above for speaker bios.

Elisabeth Cornu is a conservator in private practice. She formerly served as objects conservator at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco for 32 years. She focuses upon the conservation of wood and stone and decorative arts objects from 14th to 21st century, antiquities objects, the treatment of indoor and outdoor sculptures, historical objects and period rooms, stone monuments, as well as project coordination and intern supervision. Elisabeth also has extensive experience in exhibition conservation, including the preparation of condition reports, packing, couriering, installation organization, seismic safety, and exhibition maintenance for many international and national exhibitions. Her teaching and consulting experiences include: the Getty Conservation Institute in Central America and North Africa; UNESCO/UNDP (United Nations Development Program); US State Department at various museums in the Caribbean, South America and Africa; UMSA [Universidad del Museo Social] in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Date:Thursday, January 10, 2013, 4-6 pm
Title:Pop In to Explore Pop-Ups!
Location:ProArts Gallery, 150 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, Oakland
Cost:Free for Cultural Connections members; $15 for non-members

Start the new year with creative ideas for connecting to new audiences and experimenting with outside-the-box programming concepts. At this informal gathering, enjoy conversation with colleagues about how museums and other groups are using pop-ups to create meaningful experiences and build community. Join in by contributing to the Cultural Connections pop-up on the theme of renewal! Bring something that, for you, represents or relates to the idea of renewal.

Presenters

Diane Curry, Castro Valley Pop-Up Museum
The Hayward Area Historical Society partnered with community members to create a pop-up history museum in September 2012 to celebrate the history of Castro Valley and encourage pride in and conversations about the community. Curator/Archivist Diane Curry led the project for the Historical Society. The one-day free event brought in over 500 visitors to a storefront in Castro Village Shopping Center.

Maria Mortati, San Francisco Mobile Museum
The San Francisco Mobile Museum is an experiment creating short-run exhibits that appear in store fronts, parks and social spaces. They span high participation, locally grown creations, to randomly curated concept-driven exhibits. This project is the work of Maria Mortati, an exhibit developer with over a decade of experience working in and around museums.

Linda Janklow, PeopleOlogie
Formerly with the Museum of  Craft and Folk Art, Linda administered and presented over 300 workshops reaching 9,000 participants annually. She worked on CRAFT BAR, a collaboration of Etsy and MOCFA. CRAFT BAR connected the crafting community to the museum’s educational and curatorial mission by creating a vibrant after-hours crafting environment. Recently, Linda founded PeopleOlogie – a program offering on-the-road workshops that combine, sociology, history, art, craft and hands-on artmaking at schools, libraries, museums, or private companies.

Learn more about pop-ups and the projects presented at this event.

Join In! Get hands-on experience with the pop-up concept – participate in Cultural Connections’ pop-up at our January event.

What is it? A museum-like space where people share stories and learn from others through conversations.

How does it work?

  • Our pop-up theme is “Renewal.”
  • Bring something that, for you, represents or relates to the idea of renewal. Perhaps you have a special photo or object that perfectly represents your view of renewal. Anything you deem appropriate works.
  • At the pop-up, write a brief “label” describing why your contribution is meaningful to you. The main goal is just to have fun and spark conversations with others.
Date:Tuesday, October 9, 2012, 5 - 7 pm
Title:If You Build It: An Interactive Prototyping Workshop
Location:Chabot Space & Science Center
Cost:$20 for non-members; $5 (material fee) for Cultural Connections or NAME members

Prototyping doesn’t have to be a massive investment of money, time and resources. Interaction isn’t just for science or children’s museums. Co-sponsored by Cultural Connectionsand NAME (National Association for Museum Exhibitions), this interactive prototyping workshop is your opportunity to join the fun! You will team up with other participants to make a prototype exhibit, get experience with tools for evaluating prototypes, and see examples of prototypes from the most basic to more elaborate examples used in Bay Area museums.

Featured Prototyper:

Peggy Monahan, Exhibits Projects Creative Director, New York Hall of Science

RSVP is required. Space is limited; please RSVP to info@cultural-connections.org to reserve a space.

Date:Wednesday, July 18, 2012, Enlightened Spaces Summer Salon
Title:Enlightened Spaces Summer Salon
Location:Intersection for the Arts
Cost:$15 in advance, $20 at door

7Story and Intersection for the Arts present

JULY 18, 2012
Enlightened Spaces Summer Salon

Constant Craving: Creating Dynamic Experiences for an Engagement-Hungry World
In today’s experiential culture, public spaces must offer far more than a pretty face. They must provide meaningful and engaging experiences. But what makes an experience meaningful, and how can placemakers know what is the right experience for their location? Join us for a fascinating dive into the art and science of experience creation with insights from diverse fields. Learn what is “experience strategy,” how it works, and how to apply its principles and practices to the public realm.
• Christine Marie, live performance designer/director, TED Fellow
• Steve Diller, The Scansion Group
• Ben Davis, Words Pictures Ideas
• Jonathan Warner, Vital Environments
• Lisa Zimmerman, 7Story (moderator)

5:00 Reception
6-7:45 Program

Intersection for the Arts
925 Mission Street @ 5th Street
San Francisco

Partner Members*: $15 in advance, $20 at door
Non-members: $20 in advance, $25 at door

* AIA, ASLA, Cultural Connections

Purchase tickets here
Info: 415.626.2787 x109 or lisa@7story.net.

Enlightened Spaces is the creation of 7Story, an interactive art and placemaking consulting firm that engages people in places, causes and brands. Info: Lisa Zimmerman: lisa@7story.net or 415.302.8195

Photo: courtesy of Christine Marie

BIOS

Christine Marie
Christine Marie seamlessly integrates performers, objects and handmade special effects to elicit connections with concepts, phenomenology and history in emotional and visually stimulating performances. She is pioneering the use of 3D/stereoscopic shadow theater. Her original work, Ground to Cloud, premiered at the Redcat Theater in LA and has toured to NY. She is a former company member of ShadowLight Productions where she trained and studied Wayang Kulit in Bali. She teaches at Pixar studios and has consulted at DreamWorks. She holds an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts. Christine Marie is a 2012 TED Fellow.

Steve Diller
As a principal in The Scansion Group, Steve Diller unearths the meaningful experiences consumers seek, and uses those insights to drive new product, service and brand development. He co-wrote the book Making Meaning, and is completing a new one on the evolution of consumer experience over time. Steve’s a founding faculty member of the Design Strategy MBA program at CCA, teaching Market Insights Studio and Social Ventures, and is also on the faculty of UC Davis’ MBA program. Prior to Scansion, Steve was SVP of Brand Strategy at Added Value, and was a Partner and Director of Innovation at Cheskin.

Ben Davis
As founder and head of the creative agency Words Pictures Ideas, Ben works in the realm of public space, public health, public safety, public utilities and public transit. For more than 25 years, Ben has also worked on public projects of extraordinary scale and reach as the artist ISHKY. Today he is championing the public art project titled The Bay Lights, a monumental-scale light sculpture placed on the west span of the Bay Bridge.

Jonathan Warner
What makes an experience engaging and meaningful? When asked this question, people will return a diverse landscape of stories, examples, and principles. The success of experience design, therefore, depends on our ability to know the people for whom we design. This challenge forms the inspiration for Jonathan Warner’s work as a User Experience designer. Years of work in the digital space have revealed an effective methodology that makes People the subject of design. Now, as senior user experience designer at Vital Environments, Jonathan is bringing those techniques to the built environment. So, what makes a place engaging and meaningful?

Lisa Zimmerman (moderator)
Lisa is founding principal at 7Story, an interactive art and placemaking consulting firm that engages people in places, causes and brands. Lisa also produces Enlightened Spaces, an event series exploring innovations in public space design and activation. Prior to launching 7Story, Lisa was marketing director for MKThink, a San Francisco architecture and design firm, following 20 years providing marketing, communications, public engagement and fundraising for over 40 organizations and companies across the San Francisco Bay Area.

Date:Wednesday, June 6, 2012, 5:00pm to 7:00pm
Title:Immersive Museum Experience
Location:Children’s Creativity Museum
Cost:$15 for non-members; free to members

An immersive museum experience can range from digitally savvy installations to socially engaged interactions. What are the techniques and definers needed to create a truly immersive museum experience? Join us for an early-evening discussion with several immersive experts who can inspire and expand your exhibition concepts.

Presenters include Graham Plumb, Creative Director at Snibbe Interactive, Marta Salas-Porras, Creative Director at Obscura Digital, Cassie Thorton, Social Practice Artist, and the dynamic duo of Mike Rotondo and Luke Ianinni, Co-Founders of Tree and currently Artists in Residence at the Children’s Creativity Museum. Moderated by Darcie Forman.

4:30 – 5:00: Check-in
5:00 – 5:15: Welcome, Announcements, Speaker intros
5:15 – 6:00: Presentations (4 presenters @ 10 min. each, plus a little)
6:00 – 6:20: Discussion/Q & A
6:20 – 7:00: Networking & opportunity to experience Creatura installation

Space is limited and although we would like to get everyone in, it is first come first serve.

Date:Wednesday, April 25, 2012, 3:00pm to 6:00pm
Title:The Sky's the Limit: Getting Partnerships Off the Ground
Location: SFO Aviation Museum and Library
Cost:$15 for non-members

Hear how Bay Area museums have made partnership more than a buzzword, building relationships with for-profit companies to serve the museums’ missions. Featuring case studies from SFO’s Aviation Museum & Library, the Craft and Folk Art Museum, and the Children’s Creativity Museum, museum professionals discuss their program/project goals and strategies from conception to evaluation. Partners share their “tell all” stories, including lessons learned and the real work that went into making each partnership successful. Come with questions for panelists about your own partnership challenges.

Panelists: 


John Hill, Assistant Director, Aviation, SFO museum
Julie Schneider, Director of Creative Community Programming, Etsy
Amelia Strader, Museum of Craft and Folk Art
Irina Zadov, Director of Experience and Community Engagement,Children’s Creativity Museum


The event will take place at the SFO Aviation Museum and Library.  You will not be required to go through security.

The airport is offering free parking for program participants, but do NOT use the Fastrak lane.

Date:Wednesday, February 8, 2012, 3:00pm to 6:00pm
Title:THIS PROGRAM IS FULL! What’s Art Got To Do With It?: Fusing Art and Science Education in the Museum
Location:California Academy of Sciences
Cost:$15 for non-members; free to members

THIS PROGRAM IS FULL! What’s Art Got To Do With It?: Fusing Art and Science Education in the Museum

Two Bay Area museums—the California Academy and the de Young—are answering that question through a collaboration that began in 2010 when they hosted a summer teacher institute focusing on art and science integration. In 2011, the museums broadened their reach by collaborating with the San Francisco Unified School District on a program called Science, Literacy and Art Integration in the 21st Century (SLANT). The program engages teachers in using 21st century skills and strategies to bridge art and science processes. The February program is an opportunity to learn about this successful collaboration from the museum educators who developed it—Helena Carmena Young, Cal Academy and Emily Jennings, de Young Museum. And, it’s an opportunity to meet Dr. Elizabeth Babcock, the new Dean of Education at Cal Academy. Dr. Babcock joined the Academy in 2010, hailing from the Field Museum in Chicago.

Date: Wednesday, Feb. 8 (3:00 open; 3:30 start; 6:00 end)
Where: California Academy of Sciences (use the Staff Entrance accessed from Middle Drive East)
Check-in begins: 3:00 pm
3:30 to 3:45 — Announcements and job openings

3:45 to 5:00 – Program

5:00 to 6:00 – Networking

Elizabeth Babcock, Chief Public Engagement Officer and Roberts Dean of Education, is responsible for creating and implementing engaging exhibits, public engagement and education programs for the California Academy of Sciences. Before joining the Academy in 2010, she was the Vice President of Education and Library Collections for the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. Prior to joining the Field Museum in 2002, Babcock worked as a consultant and program developer, designing community outreach strategies and environmental education programs. She also worked for several years in the corporate sector, managing user experience research and design projects in the financial, consumer products, and technology industries.

Emily Jennings oversees both Teacher and School Programs at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. Her duties include in-gallery teaching, developing facilitated programming, organizing teacher education programs, and producing curriculum. She began her career at FAMSF researching, designing, and implementing the museums Get Smart with Art curriculum series. Her work in curriculum development is shaped by a commitment to researching how museums function as learning environments where students use and understand the metacognitive structures that shape specific disciplines. This interest in “thinking about thinking” is at the core of her work in the area of art and science integration.

Helena Carmena Young is currently the Senior Manager of Teacher Education at the California Academy of Sciences. She was a former Science Specialist who taught elementary and middle school science for several years. At the Academy, Helena oversees teacher professional development and focuses on curriculum development and teacher workshop content and pedagogy for grades Pre-K-12. Her own interest in art and background in science education has lead to the development of several professional development offerings on art and science integration in collaboration with the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and the San Francisco Unified School District.

Date:Wednesday, December 14, 2011, 3:00pm to 5:15pm
Title:Risk and Reward: Learning from Success and Failure
Location:Bay Area Discovery Museum
Cost:$15 General Admission; Members Free

This participatory discussion will explore what we can gain from taking organizational, professional, and personal risks, and what we can learn from our own risk-taking and that of our colleagues and peers.

Moderated by Jennifer Caleshu, Director of Communications at the Bay Area Discovery Museum, we will use the fishbowl discussion format to engage in a lively dialogue. To get the discussion started, you’ll hear perspectives from educators, exhibit developers and designers from Bay Area museums and design firms. Come prepared to jump into the discussion and share a story of a risk you’ve taken.

Check-in for the program will begin at 2:30pm. Immediately following the program will be our annual Cultural Connections holiday mixer. This will be held at the nearby Presidio Yacht Club from 5:30-7:30. Cash bar; all attendees get one drink ticket courtesy of Cultural Connections.

Date:Thursday, October 13, 2011, 3:30pm to 7:00pm
Title:Making Yourself More Marketable: Career Workshop
Location:John F. Kennedy University
Cost:$15 for non-members; free to members

Whether you are just entering the job market, or are a seasoned professional considering your next steps, our Career Workshop will give you the tools to map out your path and develop your professional profile. This program will focus on a variety of topics to help you develop expectations, build a game plan, and position yourself for success. Please come prepared to share any open positions available at your museum.

Presenters:
Valéria Miranda at Creative Sustainable Solutions will moderate the discussion by helping you frame your career path. Val focuses on facilitating sustainable growth for cultural and educational organizations and is the principal of Creative Sustainable Solutions, a consulting and coaching practice in Santa Cruz, CA.

Sarah Post, Program Coordinator at California Association of Museums (CAM), will present results from the 2010 California Museums Financial and Salary Survey. Conducted by CAM, this survey provides detailed information about the compensation of California museum personnel as well as the financial foundation and impact of California museums on the state’s citizens. These reports have been valuable to California museums in comparing their institutions to like organizations and instrumental in demonstrating the impact of museums in CAM’s advocacy work.

Jayna Swartzman, Program Manager at Creative Capacity Fund, will cover professional development opportunities available through the Creative Capacity Fund and resources for pursuing professional development including service providers and an overview of the topics and formats to approach.

Lucy Runkel, Director of Student Services at SEIU UHW-West & Joint Employer Education Fund will discuss social media and how building an online brand helps achieve your professional goals.

Check-in begins: 3:30pm
4:15 to 4:30 – Announcements and job openings
4:30 to 5:00 – Introduction of speakers and review of Professional Development Plan
5:00 to 5:20 – Presentation of CAM survey
5:20 to 5:40 – Creative Capacity Fund
5:40 to 6:00 – Social Branding
6:00 to 7:00 – After the presentations we will host a networking hour so attendees can connect with other museum professionals and each presenter can answer questions and discuss their presentations

Location: JFK University, Room L7

Download our Professional Development Plan and fill out prior to our program.

The speakers’ presentations can be downloaded via the below links:
Valéria Miranda
Sarah_Post
Jayna Swartzman
Lucy Runkel

Date:Wednesday, April 13, 2011, 2:00pm–4:30pm
Title:World Café Conversation at the new Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento
Location:Crocker Art Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Using the World Café method, Northern California arts professionals and museum educators will explore the role of building and connecting to audiences during times of organizational change.

As a conversational process, the World Café is an innovative yet simple methodology for hosting conversations about questions that matter. These conversations link and build on each other as people move between groups, cross-pollinate ideas, and discover new insights into the questions or issues that are most important in their life, work, or community. As a process, the World Cafe can evoke and make visible the collective intelligence of any group, thus increasing people’s capacity for effective action in pursuit of common aims. More information about this method can be found here: http://www.theworldcafe.com/

This World Café Conversation will be facilitated by:

  • Randy Roberts, Deputy Director, Crocker Art Museum
  • Stacey Shelnut-Hendrick, Director of Education, Crocker Art Museum
  • Deborah Edward, PhD, Project Manager, For Arts Sake Sacramento
Date:Thursday, February 17, 2011, 3:00pm–6:00 pm
Title:Out With the Old, In With the New—21st Century Museum Interpretation
Location:Chabot Space and Science Center
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

More than a decade into the 21st century, is your floor staff still using the same old “teach and tell” techniques? Or are they equipped with the kind of 21st century skills and technology that engage visitors and foster participation?

Join Cultural Connections to discover how three Bay Area museums are updating their floor staff programs. Learn about their successes and their challenges. Then, work in small groups with other museum professionals to discuss strategies for overcoming the challenges and plan how to implement changes at your institution.

Speakers:

  • Megan Gray, Manager of Volunteer Services, Chabot Space and Science Center
  • Sue Guevara, Visitor Programs Manager, Lawrence Hall of Science
  • Emily Quist, Visitor Experience Manager, OMCA

Moderator: Susan Spero teaches at the JFKU Museum Studies Program where she specializes in courses in education, interpretation, and technology. Dr. Spero has 25 years experience developing educational programs for museums. She also served as Docent Coordinator for both the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) and the Columbus Museum of Art.

Date:Wednesday, December 8, 2010, 1:30–6:30 pm
Title:Block-busted? How Top Museums Make or Break it with Big Name Exhibitions
Location:de Young Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join Cultural Connections and moderator Marjorie Schwarzer of JFK University, in a discussion with staff from the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Chabot Space and Science Center, and Marketing by Storm, asking juicy questions about blockbuster exhibitions: “Is it possible to create an exhibition that has mass popular appeal and a scholarly impact while staying true to an institution’s mission? If so, what’s the magic formula?”

Date:Wednesday, October 20, 2010, 2:00–5:00 pm
Title:OMG! OMCA: Backstage pass to the Oakland Museum
Location:Oakland Museum of California
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

An exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the redesigned and reinvigorated Oakland Museum of California. If you’ve got questions, senior members of the staff behind the transformation will have answers.

We’ll begin with guided visits to the Gallery of California Art and Gallery of California History with staff members from each department. The tours will be followed by a panel discussion with OMCA staff, including Museum Director Lori Fogarty and Chief Curator of Education Barbara Henry. They will share their insights on the physical changes undertaken at the Museum and the changes in working processes and institutional culture that have marked the real reinvention for OMCA. The discussion will conclude with a Q&A and a chance for broader exchange on institutional transformation.

Date:Thursday, May 6, 2010, 6:00–8:00 pm
Title:Cultural Connections and John F. Kennedy University co-sponsor: Nina Simon and the Participatory Museum
Location:John F. Kennedy University
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Visitor participation is a hot topic in the contemporary world of museums, art galleries, science centers, libraries and cultural organizations. How can your institution engage its visitors in a way that is interactive, relevant, social, and fun?

Nina Simon will discuss her new book, The Participatory Museum, and offer practical techniques for inviting community members to contribute to and collaborate with cultural institutions. This event will feature dialogue with the audience and a book signing immediately following the program.

Date:Wednesday, April 21, 2010, 3:00–5:00 pm
Title:Nightlife or Nightmare: After-hours Events
Location:Asian Art Museum of San Francisco
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Can after-hour museum mixers be an effective tool for audience development? Join colleagues from several San Francisco Bay area museums to reflect on the challenges, successes, failures and impacts of evening programs.

During a moderated discussion, program coordinators will compare their institutions’ experiences and answer behind-the-scenes questions about after-hour museum events—from goal setting and institutional buy-in to operational challenges and measuring impact.

Speakers:

  • Melissa Alexander, Director of Public Programs, Exploratorium
    (Evening program: After Hours)
  • Renée Baldocchi, Director of Public Programs, de Young Museum (Evening program: Cultural Encounters at the de Young)
  • Ana Hortillosa, Adult Program Coordinator, Asian Art Museum
    (Evening program: MATCHA)
  • Dan Schifrin, Director of Public Programs, Contemporary Jewish Museum
    (Evening program: Oy Vey Thursday)
Date:Wednesday, February 10, 2010, 3:00–6:00 pm
Title:Recession and Rebirth: Museums in Tough Times
Location:MOCHA: Museum of Children’s Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

After two years in a severe recession, museum professionals reflect on what they’ve learned, and what it means for the future of our field. Join a discussion moderated by museum leaders, exploring questions such as:

  • What do you wish you’d known two years ago?
  • What key decisions have helped museums and museum professionals navigate the recession?
  • How have administrators had to adjust their management style to keep up attendance, funding, staff morale, and visitor services in the face of financial challenges?
  • Where have change and instability helped reveal new opportunities and seeds of creativity?
  • How will the experiences of the past two years shape your organization’s future?
  • Has the economic crisis changed your thinking about museums’ role in their communities?
Date:Wednesday, December 9, 2009, 4:00–7:00 pm
Title:20x20: Rapid-Fire Presentations on Technology and Inspiration in the Digital Age
Location:The Lab in San Francisco
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Please join Cultural Connections for our annual “Feast of Ideas” and networking event:

This year our speakers will use the fast-paced “PechaKucha” format—20 seconds per slide, and a maximum of 20 slides each—focused on Technology and Inspiration in the museum world. Topics will include social networking, on-line curatorial tools, and public uses of digital collections.

After the presentations, let us buy you a drink! We’ll continue the discussion over wine or beer, with Cultural Connections hosting the first round.

Cultural Connections is also seeking new volunteers to help shape the programs for the coming years. This gathering is the ideal opportunity to learn more about the joys of board involvement before our 2010 elections. Grab a board member and let us know you’re interested, and we’ll be happy to answer any question you might have about how Cultural Connections works to support our community of museum professionals.

Date:Wednesday, October 14, 2009, 1:30–5:00 PM
Title:Behind-the-scenes Tours
Location:Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology’s off-site storage
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

This program will give Cultural Connections participants an opportunity to examine innovative approaches that redefine the conventional boundaries between public and off-limits areas of museums.

Participants will first tour the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology’s off-site-storage location. After the tour, attendees will reconvene at JFK University. Panelists from three different institutions will discuss how their behind-the-scenes tours have expanded access to their collections and facilities. We will also examine how these tours can enhance public engagement, build opportunities for in-depth programming, and can be an additional revenue source.

Date:Wednesday, June 3, 2009, 1:00 - 5:00 PM
Title:School Program Evaluation: Reports from the Field
Location:San Jose Museum of Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join us for a discussion about planning and implementing evaluation studies that measure the effectiveness of school programs in museums. What were the biggest challenges in the process? Did the evaluations and the programs meet their objectives? How will the evaluation findings help inform future strategic planning? Answer these questions and more as our panel of visitor studies experts address the evaluation process?from goal setting and methodology to analyzing results. Case studies include the evaluation of school programs at the Asian Art Museum, NASA at Moffett Field, and the Guggenheim Museum.

Date:Wednesday, April 8, 2009, 1:00 - 5:00 PM
Title:Going Green: Museums as Leaders in Sustainability
Location:California Academy of Sciences
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join us to discuss ways museums can “walk the talk” of environmental sustainability both programmatically and operationally. From the local to the national, our panel will provide an overview of recent green museum initiatives including the Green Museums Accord and explore the opportunities for and challenges of reducing and recycling museum waste. Learn about the California Academy of Sciences’ efforts to reduce its carbon footprint and raise visitor awareness with their LEED Platinum certified building and public programs.

Date:Thursday, February 12, 2009, 2:00 - 5:00 PM
Title:Serving New Audiences: Wallace Grantees Tell Their Stories
Location:Contemporary Jewish Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join our panel of museum and cultural professionals to learn about their efforts to reach new audiences through their participation in the Wallace Foundation’s Excellence Awards Program. Facilitator John Killacky, Arts & Culture Program Officer at the San Francisco Foundation, will lead a discussion about lessons learned and larger issues/themes raised in the collective work. Together we will explore strategies for how to reach new audiences and apply Wallace trends, research or evaluation data to our own work.

Slides from the presentations are available at slideshare:

Date:Tuesday, December 2, 2008, 2:00 - 5:45 PM; Networking event 6:00 - 8:00 PM
Title:Let Them Be Heard: Visitor Participation in the Museum Experience
Location:SFMOMA
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join four museum professionals as they share insights into ways visitors to exhibitions can not only participate in but also contribute to the museum experience. Stephanie Pau will share SFMOMA’s cross-departmental efforts to promote visitor participation and inquiry during the exhibition The Art of Participation: 1950 to Now, a survey of participatory artworks from Fluxus to present.

Date:Wednesday, October 15, 2008, 3:00–5:00 pm
Title:Managing When You're Not a Manager
Location:Coyote Point Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Our panel of museum professionals will share the snares and victories of designing and developing exhibits “in-house”! Together we will explore how to reach our team goals regardless of our role or seniority within the collaboration. Our facilitator, Amy Kweskin, of Quinn Associates, will offer practical and tactical strategies to enhancing working partnerships across museum departments.

Speakers:

Rachel Meyer, Director, Coyote Point Museum
Elizabeth Scott, Design and Technical Associate, Fine Arts Museums S.F.
René de Guzman, Senior Curator of Art, Oakland Museum of California

Facilitator:

Amy Kweskin, Manager of Consultant Services, Quinn Associates

Date:Wednesday, April 9, 2008, 3:00–5:00 pm
Title:Peer Reviews: Taking the Torture out of Docent Evaluation
Location:Asian Art Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

This nuts-and-bolts program will provide steps for introducing a peer review program to your docent program, and will include break out discussions with docent leaders from the Asian Art Museum and SFMoMA, among others, who have instituted and evaluated such programs.

Date:Wednesday, February 13, 2008, 3:00–5:00 pm
Title:Cultural Connections: Exhibition Conversation
Location:Chabot Space & Science Center
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

We visited the Chabot Space & Science Center to view and discuss the exhibition “Beyond Blastoff: Surviving in Space.” After visiting the exhibition independently, we used Beverly Serrell’s Excellent Judges Framework to discuss and evaluate the exhibition. Exhibition Description: http://chabotspace.org/visit/exhibits.asp

Date:Wednesday, October 10, 2007, 9:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Title:Beyond these Walls: New Ways to Connect Onsite and Online Visitor Experiences
Location:Oakland Museum of California
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Jim Spadaccini of Ideum and Ethan Wilde of Mediatrope will present case studies of projects that bridge onsite and online museum visitor experiences in new and interesting ways. Join Jim and Ethan to discuss the opportunities and challenges of creating interactive media that extend the visitor experience beyond the museum’s walls?from social networking tools for teens and art-making for toddlers, to personalized collections scrapbooks.

Date:Saturday, June 23, 2007, 1:00 - 4:00 PM
Title:Inspiring Visitor Action: Museums as Catalysts of Social Change
Location:Monterey Bay Aquarium
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

What is your museum doing to inspire visitors? Have you seen exhibits or heard about programs that challenged the status quo, or made you want to live, work, or act differently?

Museums can be wonderful forums for the discussion of social and environmental topics relevant to their communities. Some museums also hope to enable or inspire visitors to take action on important issues, using exhibits and programs to further their social justice and environmental missions. Panelists from Monterey Bay Aquarium and the Capital Unity Council will discuss their efforts to communicate a strong message that inspires their visitors to take specific actions while at the museum or in their community.

Please come prepared to discuss examples of projects you’ve done, seen, or hope to get off the ground some day.

Speakers:
Jenny Sayre Ramberg, Exhibit Developer, Monterey Bay Aquarium
Jon Dueul, Audience Research Assistant, Monterey Bay Aquarium
Stephanie Francis, Assistant Director, Capital Unity Council

Date:Friday, June 1, 2007, 5:30 - 7:30 PM
Title:Book signing with Stephanie Weaver, author of Creating Great Visitor Experiences
Location:John F. Kennedy University
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Please join us for a special book signing with Stephanie Weaver, author of Creating Great Visitor Experiences: A Guide for Museums, Parks, Zoos, Gardens & Libraries, published by Left Coast Press.

Date:Monday, May 21, 2007, 1:00 PM-5:00 PM
Title:Professionally Speaking: A Workshop on Preparing and Delivering Effective Oral Presentations
Location:San Francisco Public Library
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Do you ever have jitters when standing up to speak in front of a crowd? Do you need to brief the Board on your program but feel worried about your public speaking skills? You’re not alone! Almost everyone has some form of stage fright, but this fear can be tackled and overcome.

Join us for an inspiring and encouraging half-day workshop on public speaking skills. Learn about the causes of stage fright and strategies for handling these very common fears. This workshop will include the following:

  • Lecture presentation
  • Opportunity to speak in front of a group to receive feedback
  • Coaching and techniques for improvement
  • Chance to learn from others in breakout groups

Doree Allen received her M.A. in Film and her Ph.D. in English from Stanford University. After teaching for several years in Stanford’s “Cultures, Ideas, and Values Program,” she was hired to design, and now directs, the Center for Teaching and Learning’s interdisciplinary program in Oral Communication, in which she teaches a variety of courses on public speaking and oral interpretation. Recently, she has worked with docents and staff at the Cantor Center for Visual Art as well as at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.

Date:Wednesday, April 11, 2007, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Blog that Wiki with a Podcast! Making sense of Web 2.0
Location:Zeum Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

There’s a lot of talk these days about “Web 2.0,” but what does that actually mean? This program will help unlock the mysterious world of social networking, user-generated content, and other emerging web technologies while examining some successful ways to use these tools in museums. Please join us for this special opportunity to learn more about innovative museum projects in London and Minneapolis.

Date:Monday, February 26, 2007, 9:00 AM-12:00 PM
Title:Learning at Any Age: Creating Museum Programs for Age-specific Audiences
Location:Hayward Area Historical Society
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Museums and cultural organizations are meant to welcome everyone. But, how can a variety of programs meet the needs of multi-age audiences? What are the needs of these audiences? How can museums create developmentally appropriate programs that make use of their resources and collections? How do museums reach these diverse audiences?

Several Bay Area Educators will share how they have used principles of child and adult development to inform their practices of creating age-appropriate museum programs. They will share strategies for planning, implementing, and adapting museum programs for specific target audiences. They will also discuss teaching approaches, curriculum design, and challenges of working with different age groups.

Date:Wednesday, December 13, 2006, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Jump Start Your Museum Marketing Efforts: Tools and Strategies to Use in 2007!
Location:Triton Museum of Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Please join us for a Feast of Ideas program to jump start your museum’s marketing efforts. Whether you work in a large institution or a small museum, we will provide you with tools, strategies and some new ideas for successfully promoting your institution and its educational programs in 2007.

Cara Storm, Principal of Marketing by Storm, a marketing and public relations consulting firm for arts organizations seeking audience and revenue growth through better marketing, will kick off this year’s Feast of Ideas program. Cara will begin the program by sharing expert tips about how to reinvigorate your marketing efforts, from learning the basics to using “guerrilla” marketing tactics, followed by a question and answer period. Enjoy delectable holiday treats and network with colleagues while gathering marketing tips from both Bay Area cultural institutions and for-profit companies.

Date:Thursday, October 19, 2006, 1:30-4:30 PM
Title:Designing Spaces to Fit Programs and Programs to Fit Spaces
Location:San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Many museums are going through physical changes—retrofitting, expanding, rebuilding, or relocating—that have major implications for programs. How can new spaces be designed to maximize visibility and enhance the visitor experience? How can existing spaces be adapted to serve new educational uses? How can we design programs that acknowledge the limitations and strengths of our workspaces?

Three Bay Area art museums—The San Francisco Museum of Modern ArtThe Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, and the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco-de Young—will outline their educational and architectural planning processes and philosophies, share visitor evaluation results, and discuss the challenges of and adaptations to their new programs and education spaces.

Date:Wednesday, June 14, 2006, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Making Money and Meeting the Educational Mission
Location:de Saisset Museum, Santa Clara University
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Financial sustainability is a constant balancing act for museums.
Increasingly, museum education departments are being asked to present
programs that make a profit, a challenge which adds to the demands
already faced by staff. Presenter Val DeLang will lead a discussion on
the big issues to consider when assessing your education department’s
capacity for building revenue. How can you think creatively about the
resources you do have, and ways to build on resources already in place?
How can you realistically plan new initiatives that meet the
educational mission and make money? Come learn new planning strategies
for creating this new museum program “animal”– the program in touch
with the educational mission and institution’s earned revenue goals.

Meeting Notes from Making Money and Meeting the Educational Mission

Date:Monday, May 15, 2006, 1:00 PM-5:00 PM
Title:Professionally Speaking: A Workshop on Preparing and Delivering Effective Oral Presentations
Location:San Francisco Public Library
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Special Cultural Connections Workshop

ADVANCE REGISTRATION REQUIRED – Workshop limited to 30 people

Professionally Speaking: Preparing and Delivering Effective Oral Presentations
with Doree Allen, Oral Communication Program, Stanford University
at the

Do you ever have jitters when standing up to speak in front of a crowd? Do you need to brief the Board on your program but feel worried about your public speaking skills? You’re not alone! Almost everyone has some form of stage fright, but this fear can be tackled and overcome. Join us for an inspiring and encouraging half-day workshop on public speaking skills. Learn about the causes of stage fright, and strategies for handling these very common fears.

Date:Wednesday, February 8, 2006, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Writing for Your Peers in Museums
Location:John F. Kennedy University
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Are you working on a great project? Interested in starting a dialogue with your colleagues in other cultural institutions? Wanting to bring new ideas to the forefront? Publishing can push you to new heights in your museum work. It can help you be more organized, succinct and focused in your professional endeavors, and can benefit the field as well as your career.

Please note that this program begins and ends earlier (1-4 pm) than most Cultural Connections events, in order to accommodate the JFK University class schedule.

Meeting Notes from Writing for Your Peers in Museums

Date:Wednesday, December 14, 2005, 1:00 - 5:00 PM
Title:The New de Young Museum
Location:de Young Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Are you curious about that looming Aztec tower in Golden Gate Park? The education staff of the de Young Museum have invited us in to see their new space and regale them with our questions. Learn more about their transition process, including challenges, opportunities, and lessons learned. Panelists will include:

Sheila Pressley, Director of Education
Renee Baldocchi, Public Programs
Gina Tan, Director of Membership
Debbie Frieden, de Young Project Director

Date:Wednesday, October 19, 2005, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Creating Optimal Conditions for Learning
Location:Asian Art Museum of San Francisco
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Scattered attention. Dwindling focus. Sporadic reading. Museum fatigue.

Average adult museum visitors often behave as if they have dyslexia and attention deficit disorder. Their reading and concentration is sporadic, despite average to high intelligence. So why not turn to true “at risk” learners to look for solutions to these perennial problems?

Dyslexics and persons with ADHD are from all walks of life, all ages, all backgrounds. What they share is a neurological difference that brings into sharp relief how the brain reads and understands, and how it focuses and attends. Since the 1990s, new technologies have revolutionized our understanding of how the brain perceives, remembers, and learns. By considering these at-risk learners our “canaries in the coal mine,” museum professionals may better understand what conditions the average visitor needs in order to learn symbolically without feeling overwhelmed or put off.

Paul Gabriel—a learning specialist who has conducted preliminary research with learning disabled persons in museums—will lead this forum about “brain-based learning.” He will briefly present how the field of educational therapy has aggressively moved to imbed its theory and practice in the recent findings of neuroscience research. To provoke dialogue, he will then suggest how this theory and practice might be applied to present museum practice—and directly elicit your thoughts, feelings, and reactions about how all of this might apply directly to the work you do.

Come challenge what you think about how people learn and question what you know about what people know.

Meeting Notes from Creating Optimal Conditions for Learning

Date:Wednesday, June 29, 2005, 2:00 PM-5:00 PM
Title:Artists-in-Residence, SF Recycling and Disposal, Inc.
Location:SF Recycling and Disposal
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Get your creative juices flowing at the next Cultural Connections program, and learn about the unexpected benefits that Artists-in-Residence (AIR) programs bring to both visitors and staff. Presenters will include AIR program staff from the Headlands Center for the Arts, the Exploratorium, the Bay Area Discovery Museum, the Pacific Film Archive, and SF Recycling and Disposal, Inc. Participants will also be treated to a special garden tour of sculpture made from recycled material! This program will be held at the SF Recycling and Disposal, Inc. site in San Francisco, off of Bayshore Blvd. near the Cow Palace.

Link to SF Recycling and Disposal’s AIR program: http://www.sunsetscavenger.com/artist_in_residence.htm

Date:Tuesday, April 12, 2005, 2:00 PM-5:00 PM
Title:Going Free: The Pros and Cons of Offering Free Admission to Our Museums
Location:San Jose Museum of Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

What if all museums were free? Consider the pros and cons of museums offering free admission in an afternoon discussion. Dan Keegan, Oshman Executive Director of the San Jose Museum of Art, will share why SJMA stopped charging admission and the results of that decision. Marjorie Schwarzer, Chair of the Department of Museum Studies at John F. Kennedy University, will share another point of view, one that questions offering free museum admission.

A session moderator will challenge both presenters to delve into the issues, ensuring a lively discussion!

Meeting Notes from Going Free

Date:Wednesday, February 9, 2005, 2:00 PM-5:00 PM
Title:Strategies for Balancing Your Personal and Professional Lives
Location:Bay Area Discovery Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Presentations and break-out group work with Lori Fogarty, Executive Director of BADM and “Life Coach” Velora Lilly, PhD.

Follow-up conversation at:
The Cat & The Fiddle
303 Johnson Street, on the waterfront in Sausalito

Date:Wednesday, December 8, 2004, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Feast of Ideas
Location:Maddie Education Center, Oakland Zoo, Knowland Park
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Diane B. Frankel, founding member of “Museums Affiliated with Public Schools” (MAPS)–the organization that became Cultural Connections over 25 years ago–will kick off this year’s Feast of Ideas program, which celebrates museums and educational institutions forging connections with their surrounding communities for their mutual benefit.

Diane was founding Executive Director of the Bay Area Discovery Museum and Director of the Center for Museum Studies at John F. Kennedy University. In 1993, she was appointed Director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services by President Clinton . Returning to the Bay Area, Diane served as Program Director at The James Irvine Foundation, providing nearly $4 million to ten California museums through the Museum Youth Initiative,** so that they might deepen their roles as community-based organizations. Diane is now Senior Vice President for Museum Management Consultants, Inc. in San Francisco.

Date:Wednesday, October 20, 2004, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Challenging Assumptions in "Question"
Location:Cantor Art Cente
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Stanford University’s Cantor Arts Center has turned their exhibition development process inside out for an exciting new project, entitled “Question.” Says Patience Young, the Cantor Center’s Curator for Education, “We are throwing out our assumptions in order to challenge ourselves and engage visitors in new ways. As we distilled a list of queries from the general public and visiting students, we discovered that some of the most basic questions are the most provocative. ‘What is artistic quality?’; ‘Where is the meaning in the work?’; and ‘Who decides what is art or who is an artist?’ have stimulated animated discussions among the staff.”

Cantor Arts Center curators and other staff, working in teams, have selected objects from the Center’s comprehensive collection of 26,000 works to provoke and illustrate specific questions. Working with exhibition designers Darcie Fohrman and Michael Brown, the Center devised an installation that raises even more questions than it answers and that provides numerous ways for visitors to interact with the artworks as they explore their own ideas about art and museums.

On Wednesday, October 20th, Cultural Connections invites you to view the exhibition and meet with the project developers. We will discuss their challenges, successes and surprises, and hear how staff, visitors and reviewers have reacted to the installation.

Meeting notes from Challenging Assumptions in “Question”

Date:Wednesday, June 9, 2004, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Extreme Label Makeover: Tips for Creating Interpretive Graphics with Compelling Writing, Graphic Design, and ADA Compliance
Location:San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join us for an afternoon of extreme fun and expert advice about interpretive graphics and labels. Using select interpretive graphics at the SF Maritime National Historical Park, small groups will discuss tips for combining compelling writing, approachable design and ADA guidelines to convey stories through successful design.

Expert makeover specialists are:

— Frank Binney, Interpretive Writer, Frank Binney and Associates
— Tessa Lee graphic Designer, Public
— Margie Cochran and Armando Garcia, ADA Specialists, Center for Independent Living

Small groups will visit the Museum Building, but the program will be at the Visitor Center. Following small group sessions we will unveil a newly-design interpretive graphic, a grand finale to the Extreme Label Makeover program.

Interpretive Exhibit Resources

Graphic Design Tips

Graphic Design Examples

Date:Wednesday, April 14, 2004, 3:00–6:00 pm
Title:Exploring Inquiry Based Learning (IBL) Strategies
Location:Headlands Institute, Marin Headlands, Golden Gate National Recreational Area
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

IBL is a form of teaching which involves the teacher as a ‘guide on the side’ rather than a ‘sage on stage’. In other words, students guide their discovery, by formulating questions and figuring out how to answer those questions. In this way, students are invested in their learning and are more motivated to get results.

-IBL Instructor,Yosemite National Institute Staff

Join us for an afternoon of stimulating discussion and inquiry based exploration in the beautiful Marin Headlands. Learn more about IBL, why it is a valuable approach to teaching, and how it can be utilized to engage participants in your museum programs. Please wear comfortable shoes, as we will be walking outdoors.

Date:Wednesday, February 11, 2004, 4:00-6:30
Title:The Pursuit of Civic Engagement and a Culture of Sustainability: A Workshop with Douglas Worts
Location:John F. Kennedy University
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

JFK University Arts Annex, 2956 San Pablo Ave., Berkeley, CA
Co-sponsored by Cultural Connections and JFKU Department of Museum Studies

Museums are increasingly interested in community engagement and measuring program effectiveness. Cultural Connections and JFKU’s Department of Museum Studies are pleased to offer this expert-led and participatory workshop.

Douglas Worts addressed such questions as:

  • What is civic engagement?
  • What qualitative and quantitative measures and indicators will enable museums to understand community needs and assess program impacts?
  • What is sustainability?
  • How does a larger view of sustainability—from global carrying capacity, limits to growth, and the role of human consciousness in a globalized world—affect museums?

Presentation from The Pursuit of Civic Engagement and a Culture of Sustainability

Date:Wednesday, December 10, 2003, 2:30-5:00 PM
Title:Stress Busters: Tools to Alleviate Stress in Tumultuous Times
Location:Bay Area Discovery Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Are you stressed out at work from budget cuts, lay-offs, working overtime, and lacking the resources and time necessary to get your job done? Would you like to learn how to reduce some of this stress? Join us for a stress-busting afternoon with speakers who will provide advice for reducing stress, fun-filled activities, and plenty of time for networking.

Meeting notes from Stress Busters

Date:Wednesday, October 8, 2003, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Orientation & Wayfinding in Museums
Location:Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

We all strive to create meaningful learning experiences for visitors. However, orientation and wayfinding obstacles can interfere with visitorsí overall positive experiences. Join us for an afternoon of surprising findings about orientation and wayfinding and for creative ways of improving communication within our learning environments.

Date:Wednesday, June 11, 2003, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Behind the Scenes at the New Asian Art Museum
Location:Asian Art Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Moving an institution to a new facility presents great opportunities and challenges. Join us as we explore the new Asian Art Museum. Arrive early and participate in exclusive tours with Asian Art Museum Staff and hear the inside story on how they planned and prepared for expanded facilities and programs at their new site. Forrest McGill (Chief Curator), Brian Hogarth (Director of Education), Deborah Clearwaters (Manager of Public Programs), and Alina Collier (Resource Center Coordinator), will discuss the surprises and insights discovered in the process of opening their new museum location.

Meeting Notes from Behind the Scenes at the New Asian Art Museum

Date:Wednesday, April 9, 2003, 2:30-5:00 PM
Title:Planning Your Museum Career: Professional Development Organizations & Strategies
Location:Cantor Art Center
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Where will you be in five years? Are you so buried in your daily tasks that you feel that you have no time to think about your next career move? Get information and tips from experienced colleagues and develop a professional development game plan for yourself.

Handouts from Planning Your Museum Career:

Professional Development Action Plan

Self-Assessment: Big Museum/Small Museum – Which is Right For Me?

Date:Wednesday, February 12, 2003, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Before and After the School Visit: A Pre and Post-Visit Materials Roundtable
Location:MOCHA: Museum of Children’s Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Pre-visit and follow up materials can greatly enhance the value of a museum visit. How can museum educators create materials that teachers will actually use? Participate in small group discussions and gain valuable insights about the process of creating exciting, relevant, and useful pre- and post-visit materials.

Meeting Notes from Before and After the School Visit

Date:Wednesday, October 9, 2002, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Program Evaluation: What, Why, and How
Location:Children's Discovery Museum, San Jose
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Feeling stressed about that upcoming outcome evaluation report required by your program funder? Don’t know where to start? Wondering about evaluation techniques? Learn how evaluation can improve your program from a panel of experienced professionals including museum, evaluation, and foundation representatives and gain practical tools for assessment through a small group breakout session.

Meeting Notes from Program Evaluation

Date:Wednesday, June 12, 2002, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Interpreting the Outdoors
Location:Lawrence Hall of Science
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

What challenges are present when designing exhibits in different outdoor environments? Come explore the possibilities.

Date:Wednesday, April 10, 2002, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Docent Diversity: Recruiting, Training, and Maintaining Volunteer Docents
Location:Oakland Museum of California, James Moore Theater
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

As museums strive to engage the diverse audiences in their communities, docent training and recruitment is essential to these efforts. Join us in an exchange of ideas about managing volunteer docents.

Meeting Notes from Docent Diversity

Date:Tuesday, February 12, 2002, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Discovering Discovery Rooms
Location:Chabot Science Center
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Come join us as we investigate and explore Bay Area Discovery Rooms. Find out how these special learning environments promote learning for parents and their young children.

Meeting Notes from Discovering Discovery Rooms

Date:Thursday, December 13, 2001, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Feast of Ideas: Educational Kits that Work and Don't Work
Location:Oakland Zoo
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Take advantage of this opportunity to inspire excellence in education by sharing educational kits of all sorts–those used in your organization and in outreach programs. Bring your kits, show other participants how to use them, and what you feel works and doesn‰t work. But if your organization does not have one yet, come for some good ideas.

Meeting Notes from Educational Kits that Work and Don’t Work

Date:Wednesday, December 12, 2001, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Feast of Ideas: Marketing Materials for Programs and Events
Location:Hiller Aviation Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Are you looking for new ways to market your school and public programs? This Feast of Ideas showcased innovative tools and methods in use around the Bay Area.

Suggestions from the Melbourne Museum, Australia

Date:Wednesday, June 13, 2001, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:The Art of Art Projects: Hands-On Activities for Kids of All Ages
Location:San Jose Museum of Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join us for an afternoon filled with art and experimentation. Local Bay Area artists will lead a discussion about successful art project techniques and then put these techniques to the test and you and your colleagues create truly original art projects. Bring reusable objects, ideas and a creative spirit.

Meeting Notes from The Art of Art Projects

Date:Wednesday, April 11, 2001, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Designing Exhibits for People
Location:The Balcutha, San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

“Visitors are at the heart of the museum experience.” The opening words of Kathleen McLean’s book Planning for People in Museum Exhibitions serves as a reminder of how to design meaningful exhibits. Join us for an afternoon at the SF Maritime National Historic Park, to examine the exhibit ideas for the newly renovated sailing vessel Balclutha.

Date:Wednesday, February 14, 2001, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Accessibility in Exhibitions for Blind and Deaf Visitors
Location:Asian Art Museum of San Francisco
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

How can an individual who is blind experience a painting? How can a visitor who is deaf participate in a docent tour? Two museum professionals will discuss program ideas and useful materials for visitors with these special needs. In the galleries of the Asian Art Museum people with disabilities will share their museum experiences and offer suggestions. Participants will discuss challenges and opportunities, and brainstorm ideas using the existing displays.

Meeting Notes from Accessibility in Exhibitions

Date:Saturday, October 28, 2000, 5:30 - 7:30 PM
Title:A Gala Fundraiser at the San Jose Museum of Art
Location:San Jose Museum of Art
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Starting at 5 p.m., enjoy complimentary champagne, wine, and hors d’oeuvres while mingling with your colleagues in the Charlotte Wendel Education Center. From 6-8 p.m., the main galleries of the SJMA, will be opened for your viewing pleasure featuring a cash bar and an exclusive preview of the new exhibition, Dale Chihuly: The George R. Stroemple Collection. Docent-guided tours will be available. Tickets for the fundraiser are $30. All proceeds will go towards general operating fund and future programs for Cultural Connections.

Date:Wednesday, October 4, 2000, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:Tapping Into The Silicon Valley Gold Rush
Location:Intel Museum
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Most educators are familiar with established funders such as the NEH and CAC, but don’t know where to begin when it comes to making connections with Silicon Valley money. This program will feature speakers familiar with Silicon Valley philanthropy and will explore strategies for finding hi-tech supporters.

Meeting Notes from Tapping into the Silicon Valley Gold Rush

Date:Wednesday, June 14, 2000, 2:00-5:00 PM
Title:What's So Controversial About Revealing Bodies
Location:The Exploratorium
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

The program consisted of remarks by five Revealing Bodies exhibition team members followed by a question and answer session.

Meeting Notes from What’s So Controversial About Revealing Bodies

Date:Saturday, January 17, 1970, 4:00 - 6:00 pm
Title:Leadership in the 21st Century: Connecting Vision to Practical Strategies
Location:Asian Art Museum of San Francisco
Cost:$10 for non-members; free for Cultural Connections members

Join in a discussion with Gail Anderson about how museum leadership and staff can work to effectively address the myriad of cultural issues, both internal and external, that our cultural institutions face today.
Gail Anderson is president of Gail Anderson & Associates (GA&A), a museum management consulting
firm working with museums, cultural institutions, and associations on strategic planning, and institutional
transformation. With over thirty-five years of experience, Anderson has held numerous professional positions, published extensively, and presented at professional conferences internationally. She is the author and editor of the March 2012 AltaMira Press publication, Reinventing the Museum: The Evolving Conversation on the Paradigm Shift.

Date:Thursday, January 1, 1970, 4:30 - 6:30 p.m.
Title:Museum Exhibitions—Thinking Outside the Box
Location:California Academy of Sciences

Engage, excite, educate. Museum exhibitions must meet wide-ranging goals.

Our March program features people who collaborate with museum staff to create ground-breaking exhibitions. Come hear their stories about how they have brought out-of-the-box thinking and strategies to developing exhibitions that engage, excite and educate.

Each panelist will present a case study focusing on a specific exhibition. A discussion of trends shaping the future of museum exhibitions will follow.

More details to follow soon!