Workshop and Class Offerings

Archival Survival Kit
Museum Gift Shop Sustainability
Supporting Your Mission with Quality Cultural Educational Programs and Resources
Writing Policies for Tribal Cultural Institutions
Collaborative Curation and Sustainable Digital Heritage Strategies
Creating Motivating Exhibitions (Beginning level)
Creating Motivating Exhibitions: Community Co-Curation and the Participatory Exhibit Experience (intermediate/advanced level)
Grant Writing for Cultural Institutions: The Basics (beginning level)
Grant Writing for Cultural Institutions: Going Deeper (intermediate/advanced level)
Intellectual Property and the Native cultural center: tales of use, misuse and when we just need to walk away.
Our Oral History Story – Your Oral History Story
Policies to Pests: An Introduction to Collection Care and Management

Workshops are 3 hours long and will be on Monday afternoon; please rank your priorities.

Archival Survival Kit

Instructor: Edward Benoit, III

This workshop will introduce basic archival processes and management technics with particular attention given toward the unique needs of tribal records and archives. Participants will develop an understanding of archival principles through engaging in a series of practical case studies and exercises. The instructor will provide feedback, strategies, and additional resources for future learning. Additionally, the instructor will develop specific activities based on communication with participants prior to the institute.

Learning Objectives:

The workshop will:
1. Introduce the major archival processes of appraisal, accessioning, arrangement, description, preservation, and outreach.
2. Highlight the needs and opportunities associated with tribal records and archives
3. Prepare participants for basic archival management

Museum Gift Shop Sustainability

Instructor: Chris Tata

The Museum Gift Shops Sustainability class is focused on achieving or growing profitability success by creating a strong foundation . The class concentrates on maximizing the stores square footage, while explaining how creative solutions can be implemented to increase sales and profits.

Learning objectives:

  • Gift shops daily function
  • Retail success requires a strong foundation
    • Clear Policies – both internal and external
    •  Inventory
    • Organized purchasing system
    • Reliable POS system
    • Consistent human resources
    • Key segments of any successful retail store – Foot-traffic and inventory management
  • Taking gift shops to the next level
  • Website for marketing support
  • When to turn to e-commerce for additional revenue
  • Why does a retail establishment succeed or fail

Supporting Your Mission with Quality Cultural Educational Programs and Resources

Presenters: Judy Pamp, Renata Borton, and Raymond Cadotte

As ambassadors for our American Indian Nations we are often the doorway between our communities and the rest of the world.  These brief moments of cross cultural interactions result in our guests forming lasting impressions.  Our cultural programs, curriculum, and services are far reaching even beyond our doorways and into the world.  We are able to have a global impact and cultural interactions via the internet and web based resources.

Designing cultural programming and curriculum that supports your mission and meets the educational and developmental needs of individuals and diverse groups can be achieved by knowing; your mission, audiences, yearly goals, and collaborating with others (schools, organizations, and universities) who are invested in your mission and/or topic.   Participants will interact, learn, and utilize the Ziibiwing Center’s cultural programs, resources, and events to strengthen their own cultural educational programs.

Class Goals:

1) Demonstrate and share the Ziibiwing Center’s numerous techniques, technologies and methods appropriate to its educational goals, content, audiences and resources to improve the delivery of cultural educational services to other American Indian museums and libraries.
2) Provide quality educational opportunities to tribal archive, library and museum staff through professional training.
3) Increase communication and collaboration through mentorship between tribal and non-tribal archive, library, and museum staff.

Writing Policies for Tribal Cultural Institutions

Instructor: Leah Bowe

The workshop will cover a range of topics, including…

  • What is a policy?
  • Why does an institution need one?
  • How are policies different to laws, guidelines, protocols, or procedures?
  • How does one go about writing and implementing policy? Who within your institution should be involved in producing policies.
  • How do you establish a chain of responsibility for the mobilization of new policies and procedures?

NOTE: More workshop descriptions will be posted shortly.

Classes are 6 hours long and will be Tuesday and Wednesday; please rank your priorities.

Collaborative Curation and Sustainable Digital Heritage Strategies

Instructors: Alex Merrill & Kim Christen

This one-day workshop will provide participants with an overview of collaborative curation strategies and hands on approaches to digitization on any budget. The workshop will provide conceptual as well as hands-on training on a range of issues critical to the digital preservation of cultural materials. We will provide participants with practical skills and tips for dealing with diverse collections and leveraging on-site technologies to define a clear digitization plan and an outreach strategy to digitally repatriate materials from non-indigenous collecting institutions. We will emphasize the need for culturally responsive technologies and the need to follow cultural values throughout the digitization process.

Learning Objectives:
1. Outreach strategies to collecting institutions where tribal materials are held
2. Defining partnership goals (including defining MOUs and MOAs)
3. Defining cultural protocols and circulation needs for digital cultural heritage
4. Digitization workflow (from physical object to CMS)
5. good, better, best digitization plans
6. Define the necessary steps in the lifecycle of a digital heritage object and collection
7. Understand practical options for digitization with cultural values embedded

Creating Motivating Exhibitions (Beginning level)

Instructor: Saul Sopoci Drake

Want to create an exhibition?

Whether permanent, temporary, or traveling, creating an exhibition is a great way for individuals and groups to tell an important story with words, objects, photographs, audio clips and even videos. Developing an exhibition is a great way to show off everything you’ve learned about your community or any other topic.

In the beginner’s course for Creating Motivating Exhibitions, we will explore basic strategies for creating an exhibit. Individuals and groups will be tasked with formulating an exhibit idea that would work in their respective communities/institutions, strategizing what it would take to make their exhibit idea a reality, and brainstorming how they can follow this through when they return.

Participants will undertake the process of generating ideas in group break-out sessions and discussing new strategies with each other. Plus a targeted exhibits tour in the Ziibiwing center and interaction with key staff will supplement the class period and keep the creative juices flowing!

Learning Objectives:
Class participants will learn the basics of creating an exhibition that includes:

1.) Finding your story
2.) How to develop your topic
3.) Effective ways of researching your topic
4.) How to tell your story by using objects and other content

Creating Motivating Exhibitions: Community Co-Curation and the Participatory Exhibit Experience (intermediate/advanced level)

Instructor: Saul Sopoci Drake

Want to create an exhibit that utilizes your community in the planning phase and engages your visitors in the exhibition phase?

If so, this intermediate /advanced session of Creating Motivating Exhibitions is for you. Throughout the day we will be focuses on two key phases:

  1. Community Co-Curation: In this phase we will investigate how community involvement during all stages of the exhibit development process can lead to more credible interpretation, community empowerment and advocacy. Tips and strategies will be provided to build sustainable frameworks for this type of engagement.
  2. Participatory Exhibitions: In this section we will investigate the methods involved in creating engaging exhibition elements with an eye towards experimenting with audience participation. Tips and strategies will be provided to think about visitor engagement in new ways and invite them to interact on new levels.

The topics covered in this class are heavily dependent on seeking out a multitude of community voices and developing strategies for external participatory engagements in a collective manner. Participants will be encouraged to generate ideas in group break-out sessions and discussing new strategies. Plus a targeted exhibits tour and discussion in the Ziibiwing center and interaction with key staff will be the highlight of the session!

Learning Objectives:

Class participants will learn methods and strategies for:

1.) Community Co-Curation/The Community Process
a.) Exhibit Team: Building a community based exhibitions team
b.) Exhibit Process
I.) Initial Outreach
II.) Exhibit Development
III.) Research and Gathering
IV.) Exhibit Design
V.) Exhibit Opening
VI.) Follow Up
c.) Community Advisory Committees
I.) Outreaching to Potential CAC Members
II.) Selecting CAC Members
III.) Partnership Examples
2.) Participatory Exhibits
a.) Principles of Participation
b.) Collaborating with Visitors
c.) Co-creating with Visitors
d.) Sustaining Participation

Grant Writing for Cultural Institutions: The Basics (beginning level)

Instructor: Sally Stanton

Have you ever heard anyone at your institution say, “Oh, you can just write a grant for that!” They make it sound like a breeze, but the reality is that grant writing requires skill, creativity, determination, and exquisite attention to detail. Makes sense, doesn’t it? A lot of money is riding on the outcome.

Grant writers are compelling storytellers. A well-written grant combines the best of technical and creative writing in a unique blend unlike anything else. As museum and library professionals, you work with stories every day. Learn to tell the story of your institution, project, and program so clearly and persuasively that grantmakers are eager to fund your work.

In this beginner-level class, we will explore together the basics of good grant writing, from overall strategy to sentence-level details. Rarely does anyone ever write a grant alone, so, using a traveling exhibition as our project, we’ll take a team approach to creating succinct organization and project descriptions, statements of need, timelines and work-plans, measurable outcomes, evaluation plans, and project budgets. Participants will learn the “Swiss Cheese” method of grant writing, which relieves stress and results in a better final proposal. (Moreover, it results in a completed proposal by the deadline!) As grant writing increasingly becomes an online task constrained by non-user friendly software applications, this method becomes critical to success.

Writing a grant proposal, as participants will learn, serves as an excellent process for effective program design and planning. Participants will undertake the process of analyzing and discussing sample grant proposals and formats in group break-out sessions, and then will be tasked with developing and drafting the sections of a typical grant proposal. Together we’ll experience the typical grant writing cycle of draft, review, revise, rinse, repeat. Ultimately we’ll critique our own product as a group, talk about and brainstorm common grant writing dilemmas and how to solve them, and come up with an effective strategy for persuading our chosen grantmaker to select our proposal to fund.

Learning Objectives:

After taking this class, participants will be able to:
1. Effectively articulate the need/purpose of a project proposed for funding
2. Select a persuasive strategy most effective for the chosen grantmaker
3. Analyze and respond to a grantmaker’s guidelines/requirements
4. Understand how to design/write the basic elements of a proposal clearly, concisely, and persuasively

Grant Writing for Cultural Institutions: Going Deeper (intermediate/advanced level)

Instructor: Sally Stanton

What makes a grant “good” and what makes it better? And how do I design and write effective evaluation plans, budget narratives, timelines/workplans, and other content requested by grantmakers? How do I collaborate effectively with others inside and outside my institution, including stakeholders, to put this all together? If you want to find some possible answers to these questions, this intermediate/advanced grant writing class is for you.

Using the proposal drafts created by the participants in the basic-level grant writing class, we’ll focus on two areas:

1) Critiquing and revising drafts to ensure they meet funder requirements while also effectively telling the story of the institution and the traveling exhibition

Class activities will include brainstorming to develop proposal review checklists and conducting internal and external draft reviews. Tips and strategies for revising/rewriting, organizing content, proofreading, and developing and using boilerplate language and style sheets will be provided.

2) Choosing strategies to maximize the impact of requested content

Class activities will include writing and critiquing SMART goals, outcome statements, and developing evaluation methodology. Tips and strategies for preparing budget narratives, timelines, workplans, and other technical content will be provided, and new ideas brainstormed for presenting this information within funder constraints.

We will close the day by considering strategies, tools, and potential pitfalls for collaborating with colleagues inside and outside our institutions, as well as with stakeholders, to produce an effective grant proposal, and we’ll have a round-robin discussion of insights, learnings, and questions-yet-to-be answered about the art of grant-writing.

Learning Objectives:

After taking this class, participants will be able to:
1. Review a grant proposal against funder’s criteria, identify weak areas, and offer suggestions for revision
2. Understand how to design/write/present technical content (evaluation plans, budgets, timelines/workplans) effectively within funder guidelines/constraints
3. Collaborate more effectively on grant writing with both internal and external colleagues and stakeholders

Intellectual Property and the Native cultural center: tales of use, misuse and when we just need to walk away.

Instructor: Miranda Belarde-Lewis

Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) seem like a good idea, especially when there are so many instances of abuse and misuse of our information, knowledge, stories and art. While IPRs can be helpful for specific circumstances, we need to be informed consumers so we can a) choose the right IPR to suit our needs or, b) choose to protect our “property” in ways that make sense to us and our communities. This day-long seminar will provide examples of all of the above as we work together and co-create strategies to preserve and protect our community’s knowledge – even as we share it, and make it available to the world.

Learning Objectives: this seminar will

1) make clear the differences and applications of the most common IPRs (copyright, trademarks, patents, etc),
2) provide examples of existing projects that work to preserve and protect various forms of Indigenous Knowledge,
3) will work to develop strategies to utilize IPRs to their maximum effectiveness, and
4) provide a space for participants to share their success and less-than-successful experiences for others to learn from.

Our Oral History Story – Your Oral History Story

Instructors: Lynn Aho, PhD & Valoree S. Gagnon, PhD Candidate

In Our Oral History Story – Your Oral History Story, attendees will use their diverse disciplinary and cultural lenses to explore examples of oral history projects.  This exploration will inform discussion on the purposes and ways of conducting oral history projects in tribal communities.  They will also learn how to plan for and carry out an oral history project, including practical, legal, and ethical aspects.  In addition, attendees will participate in a range of activities of doing oral history—interviewing, narrating, and mapping out plans for an oral history project to be carried out in their respective communities.

According to the Oral History Association, “Oral history refers both to a method of recording and preserving oral testimony and to the product of that process. … oral history as a way of collecting and interpreting human memories to foster knowledge and human dignity.”   This workshop specifically focuses on oral history in and for tribal communities because tribal cultural needs, desires, and protocols must be additionally considered and honored.  The workshop resources, schedule, and contents are intended to prepare attendees with good foundational knowledge of oral history planning, ethics, and implementation as well as active roles in oral history projects for and in tribal communities.

Upon successful completion of Our Oral History Story – Your Oral History Story, attendees will be able to:

  1. Describe steps in planning and carrying out an oral history project.
  2. Describe ways to ensure that oral history projects are conducted ethically, with a focus on tribal communities.
  3. Participate in the collection of oral history interviews as both an interviewer and a narrator.
  4. Develop the main components of planning and carrying out an oral history project in and for your community.

Policies to Pests: An Introduction to Collection Care and Management

Instructor: Holly Cusack McVeigh

This course introduces participants to the basics of developing a collections management policy and offers a survey of collections care and management. Participants will be introduced to a variety of topics including policies, basic documentation and physical care using the collections management policy as a framework for understanding the basic concepts of museum best practice. Hands-on activities and take-home resources will support this learning.

When participants complete this course they will:

  • be familiar with the basic of a comprehensive collections management policy (including risk management, ad hoc policies, insurance, disaster planning, ethical and legal issues);
  • be able to integrate and apply knowledge of current best practices in collections management and care;
  • be familiar with the core museum collections management, professional organizations and reference sources including on-line resources;
  • be familiar with and apply critical thinking to current legal and ethical issues in museum collections care and management;

Class registration link: