Meet Megan Bardis! The Special Collections Firestone Summer Fellow for 2023

Meet Megan Bardis! The Special Collections Firestone Summer Fellow for 2023
Megan Bardis

Education Background: I recently graduated from the dual degree program at New York University and Long Island University, where I received an M.A. in Museum Studies and an M.S. in Library & Information Science. I also received an Advanced Certificate in archives and records management from LIU. I got my B.A. from Northeastern University, where I studied history and minored in Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies and Human Services.

Previous Experience: My first experience working in archives was at the Massachusetts State Archives, where I worked as a reference co-op during my junior year of undergrad. For the first three months of this co-op I dealt with reference queries in person, on the phone, and through email. This experience became remote in March 2020, in which my responsibilities mainly entailed transcribing court indices from the 17th century. Before I began my graduate studies, I interned at the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association, where I was able to process a collection of musical scores and help catalog their library. 

During my first semester of graduate school I was a fellow at LIU’s “Digitizing Local Histories” project, where I had the opportunity to digitize and edit the metadata of a variety of archival materials. After this fellowship ended, I began a graduate assistantship at NYU’s Bern Dibner Library, where I mostly processed new collections and aided with reference queries. In the summer of 2022, I was an archival intern at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where I worked primarily with their institutional records. At this internship, I prepared and uploaded The Met’s digital assets onto the DAM NetX, helped with cataloging on ArchivesSpace, and assisted with reference queries. 

After my internship at The Met, I returned to the Dibner Library and continued my graduate assistantship until I graduated in May 2023. Being at Dibner Library for more than a year exposed me to the daily workings of a library and archives, giving me the chance to perform a wide variety of archival and library tasks. I’m so thankful for my time at Dibner Library and I hope to bring some of that experience to this fellowship! 

Why I like Archives/Professional Interests: I was always passionate about people’s stories but that humanity was lacking in my high school history classes, deterring me from pursuing a career in education. My studies and professional experiences helped me recognize how vital archives are in not only preserving records for the future but also for telling people’s story, affirming their experiences and role in our collective history. I believe that my time at Northeastern, NYU, and LIU fueled my passion for libraries and archives and motivated me to enter the field as a way to participate in that storytelling through inclusive processing and reference.     

Other interests: I love to travel and I’m a self-proclaimed foodie! I’m so excited to explore New Jersey and the states that surround it – and hopefully eat good food along the way. If you have any restaurant recommendations or know of any places I must visit before my fellowship is over, let me know! 

Looking forward to working on the following project(s) while at Princeton: I’m most excited to answer reference queries and work on single-item processing! I think these two experiences will expose me to the wealth of archival materials in Special Collections.

Welcome Megan!