Re-Tool Practicum Photo


The practicum portion of RE-TOOL 21 is a partnership opportunity for arts and culture organizations (host sites) who support the goal of promoting an inclusive, pluralistic arts and culture sector. Practicum host sites provide participants an opportunity to gain job experience and support the advancement of their training in art preparation and handling.

With generous support from the Joyce Foundation, the participants are paid $20/hr for the practicum portion so they can continue developing the skills needed to seek further employment in the field.

“At the beginning of this practicum experience I didn't know what to expect and was a bit nervous as I didn't feel confident in my ability to work in a museum as I had never worked in one before. However, once I started to get to know everyone at the Balzekas I became more comfortable with the environment and ended the practicum by being offered a position at the museum."

—- RE-TOOL 21 participant from Cohort II, on their practicum experience.

For organizations/projects seeking to partner as a host site, the practicum experience is meant to be flexible with set requirements, including:

  • Experience includes 20-80 hours of relevant work
  • Practicum site/project submits a practicum description here
  • Practicum site/project designates a Practicum Supervisor
  • Participants are required to complete the practicum portion by December 19, 2022

“I think the practicum instantly gave us access to a group of folx who were outside of our normal circle of applicants. Generally we receive students who are still undergrads and don't have the level of commitment and training that RE-TOOL provided. Simply having access to a new pool of applicants was an opportunity to expand our network, which was desperately needed.”

—- Practicum host, on the impact of the RE-TOOL 21 program’s mission

RE-TOOL 21 Practicum Roles + Responsibilities

The practicum site/project that ultimately agrees to accept a student for a practicum experience also assumes an educational role. One person, a Practicum Supervisor, must agree to help arrange the student's experience and define activities that will meet the objectives of both the student and of the practicum organization/project. The practicum, however, is not meant to burden the supervisor with extensive supervisory demands.

The roles and responsibilities of supervisors and students are outlined below:


  • Define the scope of the practicum with the student.
  • Discuss and develop a schedule or work plan with the student.
  • Provide an orientation to the organization, team, and site/project for the student.
    • Mission
    • Organizational policies, procedures, codes of conduct
    • Provision of appropriate workspace
    • Introduction to key people
  • Enable the student to participate, as much as possible, in day-to-day operations (e.g. team and departmental meetings, professional development courses - if applicable, etc.).
  • Include the student in meetings or seminars related to the practicum area.
  • Provide on-going supervision, resources, and guidance necessary for the student to complete assigned projects and tasks.
  • Clarify to whom the student should report if the supervisor is not available.
  • Meet weekly to provide guidance and mentorship, and to chart development and progress.
  • Complete a final evaluation form at the end of the practicum, discuss it with the student, and send it to


  • Discuss the scope of the practicum with the supervisor.
  • Ask for specific background reading or other information as required.
  • Clarify with the supervisor whether work will be independent or in collaboration with others.
  • Clarify to whom they should report if the supervisor is not available.
  • Discuss their work schedule and progress with the supervisor on a regular basis.
  • Document their involvement in the project(s) (e.g. project activities, report writing, etc.).
  • Perform in a manner appropriate to the expectations of the supervisor, adhering to policies and regulations of the organization (including dress code and work hours) and to ethical and professional standards.
  • Ensure the supervisor has a copy of the supervisor’s final evaluation to complete at the appropriate times.

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