Projects, events and news from the University of Cambridge Museums
My name is Niki Hughes and I recently started at the University of Cambridge Museums as the Opening Doors Project Coordinator.
Prior to this position, I worked at Imperial War Museum (IWM) Duxford as the Volunteer Manager for nine years. In that position I managed and coordinated a team of over 500 volunteers, working closely with other partner organisation that were based on the historic airfield site.
For those who haven’t visited, it can be a very beautiful place but is often very windy! Before IWM, I worked at the wonderful Foundling Museum on Brunswick Square in in London as a Volunteer Coordinator/Front of House and, way back in the day, at the Manor House Museum in Kettering as an Archaeological Cataloguer.
Initially my passion was Archaeology and I undertook a degree at the University of Leicester, graduating in 2001. I was focused on becoming a field archaeologist….until I spent a short period of time working for the Canterbury Archaeological Trust; I wasn’t “digging”, as I expected, but helping to run an exhibition about the Whitefriars excavations, known as “The Big Dig” (of “Time Team” fame). This exhibition was staffed by volunteers and I gained my first experience of Volunteer Management. After this, I did an MA in Museum Studies at the University of Southampton and focused my theses on public involvement in heritage. I chose to focus my career on volunteering because I found it to be completely rewarding and inspiring to understand individuals motivations behind giving their time for free.
In my new role, I am very excited about being involved in the University of Cambridge Museums Apprenticeship, Traineeship and Internship schemes as well as the Work Experience events; I have already been inspired by sitting in on two Apprenticeship Reviews. I am looking forward to getting out and about to meet everyone over the next few weeks.
Niki Hughes, Opening Doors Project Coordinator, University of Cambridge Museums