The American Alliance of Museums established their Emerging Museum Professionals (EMP) initiative to encourage career development and networking within the museum industry. Across the country, museum professionals formed EMP groups to connect, support one another, and generate opportunities for professional development. Seattle Emerging Museum Professionals (SEMP) was a local EMP chapter originally founded as a student-run extension of the University of Washington Museology program.
As SEMP chair from April 2014-December 2015, I organized events (including an EMP networking function at the 2014 American Alliance of Museums Annual Meeting), communicated with sponsors, and worked with co-chair Jackie Peterson to revitalize SEMP’s social media presence. I was also heavily involved in the effort to coordinate EMP groups on a national level. I helped lead a task force in creating a national EMP report for presentation to the American Alliance of Museums, and collaborated with Michelle Epps and other EMP leaders to develop an overarching EMP mission statement and leadership structure. In August 2015, the National Emerging Museum Professionals Network became an independent organization and is currently pursuing 501(c)(3) status.