Every year, the museum’s Asian Art Department gets a new intern. The position is generously funded by the Society of Asian Art of Hawaii (SAAH). This year, the department picked Charise Michelsen, an Information Science graduate student at the University of Hawai‘i–Mānoa where she is also an assistant in Hamilton Library’s Preservation, Archives and Special Collections Department.

Charise studied art history as an undergraduate at UH and hopes to pursue a museum career in either collection management or archival work. Charise wasn’t an unknown quantity to Asian Art Department staff—earlier this year, she was one of four UH students who worked with the Asian Art Department to develop a special website on Japanese painting established collaboratively between the Honolulu Museum of Arts and the University of Hawai‘i, and she has also recently organized a workshop on Japanese rare books for the University of Hawai‘i.

In her museum internship she will focus on Japanese art and assist with print rotations, publications, exhibition website development, and the Richard Lane archives. “I’m extremely grateful to SAAH and the Asian Art Department for this opportunity to gain intimate knowledge of museum practices pertaining to Asian art collection development,” says Charise. She feels that not only will it be an interesting experience, but that it could be a key factor in where she ends up after graduate school, adding “The internship will help shape my future career.”

The Society of Asian Art of Hawaii is a non-profit educational and charitable organization that has funded internships in the Honolulu Museum of Art’s Asian Art Department since 1994. This internship provides emerging museum professionals with the valuable opportunity to work hands-on with Asian art collections and to gain real-world experience working in a museum.