Saturday, March 13, 2010

"Curator" makes 50 best careers of 2010

US News has published its list of the 50 best careers of 2010 and guess what - "curator" makes the grade, joining funeral director, plumber, commercial pilot, meeting planner, and 45 other interesting professions. According to the profile, "the number of curators is expected to rise by 23 percent, well above the average rate for all careers. Between 2008 and 2018, there will be 2,700 new positions added."

What?? I'd love to know where US News got these numbers (as, I noticed, would most of the people who commented on this article; you can tell that they were museum people because they couldn't work out which was worse - the over-optimistic job projections or the fact the article spelled Jackson Pollock wrong). However, the US News goes on to add a note of caution; "Some museums have struggled in the recession, which puts additional pressure on those who take these jobs. Competition for curatorial positions may be steep. Those who don't rise to the top may seek related work as museum technicians, archivists, or researchers." I guess my colleagues and I in the collection care field would be fall in that last, "loser" category.

Beyond that, I had to chuckle at some of the sections, such as "activity level." In the case of some curators I've known, I'd say "non-existent (check pulse)," but no - apparently you may have to climb ladders or even carry objects (assuming that you don't have any of those people who didn't rise to the top to do that for you). And watch out; if you do fieldwork, there may be some walking involved. All this and "moderate" stress levels? It's tough at the top....

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