Graduates can enhance prospects by volunteering at South Tyneside attraction

The reconstruction of an Ango-Saxon village at Jarrow Hall.
The reconstruction of an Ango-Saxon village at Jarrow Hall.
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Chiefs at a South Tyneside history attraction say graduates can boost their work prospects by volunteering at the site.

Groundwork South Tyneside and Newcastle (STAN), which operates Jarrow Hall Anglo-Saxon Farm, Village and Bede Museum, says their success shows how vital volunteering can be to boosting careers – and is appealing for others to follow.

Graduate Emily Jeffers.

Graduate Emily Jeffers.

Canadian Emily Jeffers has become one of two people – along with history graduate Hannah Mathers – appointed to new supervisor roles the museum.

She moved to the region from Nova Scotia to study for an MA in Museum and Artefact Studies at Durham University, completing her course last summer.

To develop experience and skills relevant to her degree, she began volunteering at Jarrow Hall’s Bede Museum when the full site reopened last October after temporary closure.

Emily was joined by Hannah, whose MA in Museum Studies taught her museum theory, documentation, collection management, interpretation and ethical issues.

Emily, 23, said: “I was interested in Jarrow Hall because new ventures in the cultural sector are rare and I wanted to be able to learn and contribute my skills as the museum grew.

“Jarrow Hall offers a wide range of volunteering opportunities such as farming, education, museum research and business which allows volunteers to gain new skills and experiences from a dozen different areas of interest.

“Volunteering within educational programming and making museums more accessible has been the most memorable experience overall.”

Leigh Venus, operations manager culture and heritage at Groundwork, said: “Hannah and Emily have showcased amazing enthusiasm and commitment within their voluntary roles at Jarrow Hall.

“As supervisors Hannah and Emily will be responsible for delivering an exceptional visitor experience to all of our guests, clients, staff and volunteers.”

More about volunteering is available at www.groundwork.org.uk/sites/stan.