Museum Studies Program

Established in 1976, GW’s Museum Studies Program ranks among the top museum training programs in the United States. More than 1000 program alumni now work in museums, historic sites and houses, federal agencies, and related non-profits throughout the world.

On July 1, 2017, Museum Studies joined Fine Arts & Art History, Music, Theatre & Dance and Interior Architecture in launching a new Corcoran School within Columbian College of Arts & Sciences. The Corcoran School provides a cultural commons for students, faculty, practitioners, and researchers alike. Students at the Corcoran will experience an engaged liberal arts, and be better prepared for rich and multidimensional careers.

Within the Corcoran, the Museum Studies Program's reputation for excellence is based on its exceptional faculty, a demanding academic curriculum, and a strong internship program. Coming from many different backgrounds, its faculty members include practicing museum professionals with many years of knowledge and experience in all aspects of museum operations.

The Museum Studies Program offers a friendly environment where students are supported, encouraged, and given individualized attention as they prepare for a rewarding museum career.

Program Highlights

  • Invigorating classes that balance theory and practice
  • The opportunity to study all aspects of museum work today
  • Outstanding internships (domestic and international)
  • Networking with local and national museum professionals
  • Life in a vibrant urban environment in the nation’s capital

Visit Us

Visit the program offices, tour GW’s campus and familiarize yourself with Washington, D.C.’s local museums. Please make appointments to meet with us in advance by emailing

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Meet the Program Head

Program Head Professor Schiavo

Professor Schiavo has taught in the Museum Studies program since 2009. She has extensive experience in museum practice, including positions at the (Washington, DC) City Museum; Jewish Historical Society of Greater Washington; and the National Building Museum. She received her BA from Wesleyan University and her PhD in American Studies from GW.  Laura’s current research looks at issues of identity in museums and the historic roots of and contemporary commitment to civic engagement in museum practice.