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The proximity of the University to Washington, D.C. and Baltimore allows many graduate students in the department to take advantage of the Museum Fellowship program and gain curatorial and museum research experience. Currently approximately two to four Fellowships are offered per academic year, although in some cases students may receive a half year of support for a special project. Students are encouraged to apply for the Museum Fellowship, particularly if local collections contain works related to thesis or dissertation topics or they have a strong interest in working with local curators.
Museum Fellows work directly under the supervision of a curator or other museum professional on a research project which suits their interests, skills, and the host institution's projects. Many Museum Fellows have worked on exhibition research, collection research, and educational programs about an exhibit during their fellowships. In several instances, museum fellowships have led to positions as curators in the institution where the student was working. A number of graduates from Maryland's program in art history and archaeology are now working as museum professionals. Locations where recent Museum Fellows have worked include the National Gallery of Art, the Freer and Sackler Galleries of Art, the Walters Art Museum, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden.