Each spring, the alumni association sponsors a symposium on some aspect of current museum theories and practices. The symposium is open to the public, and offers an annual opportunity for alumni, faculty, and current HA students to reconnect.

The educational and cultural sectors have experienced tremendous challenges recently, especially during the last decade. Continually changing standards, the explosion of digital technology, demographic shifts, and budget cuts that reduce schools' ability to visit cultural sites force museums, libraries, archives, and other cultural organizations to adapt if we hope to engage our audiences.

Upcoming Symposium
Making Museums Relevant for Diverse Communities
Saturday, April 1, 2017 - Eastern Illinois University

Recent Symposia include:

  • 2016 "Museum Authenticity in the Age of Participation"
  • 2015 "Museum Education in the 21st Century"
  • 2014 "Digital Humanities"
  • 2013 "The Business of Museums: Not for Profit is No Excuse"
  • 2012 "Universal Design in Museums, Archives and Historic Sites"
  • 2011 "Museum Standards: Evolution or Revolution?"
  • 2010 "Bridging the Gap: Cultural Institutions and their Communities in the 21st Century"
  • 2009 "The Ties that Bond: Museums Making Connections"
  • 2008 "Ambassadors of History: A New Voice for Marketing Museums"
  • 2007 "Justify Your Existence: A Question of Relevance"

Keynote speakers have included:

  • 2016 Dr. Kiersten Latham, Professor, Kent State University
  • 2015 Tim Grove, Chief of Museum Learning, Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
  • 2014 Doug Reside, Digital Curator for the Performing Arts, New York Public Library
  • 2013 Elaine Webster, Assistant Director for Advancement, National Museum of the American Indian
  • 2011 Cherie Cook, Senior Program Manager, American Association for State and Local History
  • 2010 Bob Beatty, Vice President for Programs, American Association for State and Local History
  • 2009 Mary Alexander, Director, Maryland Historical Trust Museum Assistance Program
  • 2008 Ellsworth H. Brown, Director, Wisconsin Historical Society
  • 2007 William Underwood Elland, Director, Georgia Museum of Art