The 2021 application period for the Student Work in Museums Competition is now closed. Good luck to all who submitted proposals! 7/1/2021

  Call for proposals: 

2021 spotlight on Student work in museums (swim)

University students throughout our region are engaged in challenging and important work in southeastern museums. They are doing research, producing exhibits, conducting oral history interviews, creating content for websites, and developing public programs. SEMC is committed to recognizing and rewarding excellence in museum work done by students through the annual Spotlight on Student Work in Museums (SWIM) Awards.

Students may submit proposals to participate in a Virtual SWIM Showcase on October 26, 2021 (final date/time TBC) at the SEMC 2021 Annual Meeting which will be held as hybrid with both virtual sessions and on-site session in Chattanooga, Tennessee. There is no fee to submit a proposal to the 2021 S.W.I.M competition.

The Virtual SWIM Showcase will highlight chosen projects and research by students in museum studies programs or related academic programs who have conducted museum-based projects. This session will provide an opportunity for students to obtain new insights from the work of their peers, share ideas and projects with the SEMC museum professional community, and network with museum colleagues after the session.

Students selected to share their projects in the Virtual Showcase (which will be accessible by all conference attendees) will receive a certificate in recognition of their achievement. 

Questions? Contact Pam Meister,, 828-227-3192 (office), 404-374-2365 (mobile) or Patricia Hobbs,, 540-458-4321 (office), 540-461-1340 (mobile).

Criteria for SWIM proposals:

  • The proposal must present work done by a student or group of students for a southeastern museum as part of an internship, employment (paid or unpaid), or class project.
  •  Your project will be presented in real-time via the Zoom Meetings platform.  It must be between 5 – 7 minutes long, and may include graphics, photographs, and videos that illustrate your work.  Groups must adhere to the same time 5-7 minute time limit for their total presentation.
  • Candidates or recent graduates of a bachelor’s, master’s or Ph.D. program are eligible to submit proposals; the SWIM committee will jury undergraduate and graduate proposals separately.
  • Group proposals must include names, majors, and intended degrees of all group members, but designate one person as the primary session contact.
  • Support materials may include documents, photographs, and links to websites that feature your work products.
  • Those chosen to present in the virtual showcase do not need to pay a registration fee to present. However, if a presenter wishes to attend other sessions (virtual or in-person), there will be a reduced registration rate for students. All presenters are responsible for their own Annual Meeting registration fees and travel costs. Students are encouraged to apply for SEMC scholarships which will be available soon..

Mail or email an application form, supporting materials, and a copy of your resume to:
     Pam Meister,, [828] 227-3192.
     Mountain Heritage Center
     176 Central Drive,
     Western Carolina University,
     Cullowhee NC 29723

Deadline and Notification:

Application materials must be emailed or postmarked by June 30, 2021. Proposals will be reviewed by the SWIM jurying committee; all applicants will receive notification by August 7, 2021.

SWIM is sponsored by AAMG and COMPT