CWRU Students Take Closer Look at Art as CMA Student Guides

Three students sit in classroom at the Cleveland Art Museum. Two of the students are from Case Western Reserve University.

Student guides Hannah, Marisa and Jeanna in training for the Student Guide program at the Cleveland Museum of Art

A recent Cleveland Museum of Art blog post on the CMA Student Guide program features an interview with CWRU art history major Jeanna Lopez as told to Hannah Boylan, a senior pursuing her Medical Anthropology and Cognitive Science degrees and master’s degree in Bioethics. Both are CMA student guides in the program, which is a paid experiential training internship that allows college students to personally engage museum-goers using close-looking techniques.

The tours emphasize building and expanding observation skills and are less focused on specific histories of artworks. Lessons are many – for student guides and tour attendees.

“I’ve always been enthusiastic about art,” says Hannah. “My grandparents took me to the Frist Art Museum in Nashville all throughout my childhood. The proximity of Case’s campus to the CMA was a factor in my decision to choose to come to Cleveland, so I was ecstatic when I saw the student guide program in The Daily.

“Art had always been only a hobby, but the program gave me a chance to make it more than that, Now I plan on writing my masters thesis comparing slow/close looking with ethnography,” she says.

The Student Guide program is inclusive and accessible, as Jeanna notes in the blog. “Working with a diverse group of students is awesome because the basis of the program is that any student in the Cleveland area can join. We have people from so many ethnic backgrounds or academic interests or focuses, so everyone is bringing something different to the table. For example, I have a student that is a computer science major, and the way that he looks at art intrigues me. I think that I am able to view things from different perspectives as a result of being around such a diverse group of people,”  Jeanna says.