Kayle Rieger Patton, 2016
I am working as the education coordinator at the Meadows Museum, a Spanish art museum in Dallas, Texas. Part of my role involves coordinating all of the incoming group tours, ranging in size from five to 500 people. But my favorite role involves my work with our access programs.
Since I started, I have slowly moved into the role of planning and implementing our Connections and Re-Connections programs, which are for adults with early stages of dementia. The programs run every month and involve conversation and reminiscing around a central topic or theme, gallery time, and creative activities including art-making, writing/literature, and enjoying music. I love working with this group of adults and providing enrichment, friendship, and hope to their lives.
I also work alongside our director of education on special accessibility initiatives such as events/programs and other resources for people who are blind or vision impaired. I am constantly learning new things about accessibility: the monumental yet invisible need for it, the unending applications, and its universal reach, and I am so inspired to advocate for institutional change. I have even started learning American Sign Language and am considering pursuing studies to be an ASL interpreter. I never would have guessed, even just a few years ago, that I would be doing that! I'm excited by the work that I am privileged to be a part of and I look forward to where it may lead me into the future. It just goes to show how any field of study can lead you to museum work, and vice versa!