This post is a part of the AAHC Forum. In the coming months we will invite current and past grantees to contribute their project experiences via blog posts on our UpNext Blog and then ask you to respond through the AAHC Virtual Forum. We hope you will add your voice and share your needs and opinions so that AAHC can continue to help African American museums thrive. Please visit the AAHC forum to continue the conversation.
By Brad Miller
I AAM Fellow, Carrie Meek-James Eaton Southeastern Regional Black Archives Research Center and Museum
My name is Brad Miller, M.B.A student at the School of Business & Industry, Florida A&M University. I'm from Nassau, Bahamas, and learned about the Black Archives through a job search that was filled with hurdles because of my status as an international student. While applying to the Black Archives, I had no idea how my business acumen would provide me with such an enriching experience.
I first became familiar with African American history while listening to artists like Tupac and Bob Marley, who referenced great African-American leaders in their music. My grandmother also shared stories of the Civil Rights era with me from her vantage point as a nurse in the Bahamas. By the time I began my studies at Florida Memorial University, I was already eager to learn more about African American history. Through other courses such as African American Psychology and other readings, my knowledge grew, but I know now I had a lot more to learn.
I AMM Fellow Brad Miller chats with a group of teenage visitors. Photo courtesy of the Meek-Eaton Black Archives.
Working in the Inspiring Authorities in Museum Management training program as an I AMM Fellow, I am learning the intricacies of museum management. I work in media, marketing, and development. This experience is allowing me to hone my skills in planning and coordinating events, to become a more effective leader, and to improve my ability to pay attention to detail.
What I love most about working in the museum is interacting with the people who come from near and far with a great appreciation for the historical artifacts that we have here. Today, I spoke with a lady from Louisiana who made it her goal to stop here on her way back from a family visit. Being an educator, we had an in depth conversation about the generational gap that needs to be bridged between young and old. With technology growing at its rapid pace, we are losing touch with our forefathers. Many of us may argue that technology promotes information sharing; which is true. But it is in my belief we must provide the next generation with access to first-hand accounts of our history.