Berry Student to Intern for the Smithsonian Institution

Release Date: May 15, 2018

Berry College student Cecilia Ratke will spend her summer in Washington D.C. as an intern for the Smithsonian Institution. 

Ratke, a senior, was selected as one of six Katzenberger Art History interns. She will work on the project “Fabulous Fish: Illustrations and Images,” which will involve rehousing illustrations, cataloging newly accession objects and producing digital archival derivatives of original works in the Fish Illustration Collection, which contains original art, photographs and other visual works depicting various fish species found throughout the world. The collection spans a time of more than 180 years and contains images that document live fish characteristics, such as color and other external anatomical features that may not be distinguished in preserved specimens. 

The Smithsonian Institution is the world’s largest museum and research complex, with 19 museums and galleries and the National Zoological Park. The total number of objects, works of art and specimens at the Smithsonian is estimated at nearly 138 million, including more than 127 million specimens and artifacts at the National Museum of Natural History. 

“I've never been to D.C. before and I've always wanted to go, especially to see the Smithsonian museums, so this is a dream opportunity for me,” said Ratke, an art history honors major under the mentorship of Associate Professor of Art Virginia Gardner Troy. “I worked at a science museum in high school, mostly in the aquarium, and developed an interest in fish and natural history there. So, I'm excited that this project has an interdisciplinary aspect where I can combine my other interests and experience with art history work.”

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Written by Public Relations Student Supervisor Alexi Bell