GSA Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, USA - 2019

Paper No. 155-5
Presentation Time: 2:30 PM


WILKINS, Wm. Justin, Geospatial Center, The Mammoth Site of Hot Springs, SD, 1800 US 18 Bypass, PO Box 692, Hot Springs, SD 57747 and HOLTE, Sharon E., Division of Education, The Mammoth Site of Hot Springs, SD, 1800 US 18 Bypass, PO Box 692, Hot Springs, SD 57747

The Mammoth Site of Hot Springs, SD has fostered informal education for K-College level students as and the public since its inception in 1974. Through onsite tours, exhibits, and on-site classes for school and scout groups, these educational directions have steadily progressed through time.

Internships at The Mammoth Site has been an integral part of The Mammoth Site’s educational strategy since 2004, initially focusing on exhibit and in-situ cleaning, interpretive tour delivery, and teaching informal museum classes. The internship experience has changed over its existence to improve focus on specific institutional objectives, namely the production and revision of exhibits and educational courses. While continuing to expand, currently the internship has two categories: Museum Engagement and Museum Conservation.

As part of our ongoing expansion, The Mammoth Site has recently added extensive digitization capabilities through the addition of the Turner Geospatial Center. Enhanced capabilities include: photogrammetry software, two 3D scanners, and a 3D printer. By increasing our capabilities in these ways, The Mammoth Site is able further impact our interns abilities to learn and teach. Conservation interns are specifically tasked with mastering these technologies in order to digitally record Mammoth Site specimens to be shared with researchers and the public. With these tasks, they developed protocols on large and small scale photogrammetry, 3D scanning and printing, 2D digitization and mapping, onsite and offsite digital archiving. As a way to test their knowledge, Conservation interns were tasked with peer mentoring other interns in digitization within the Turner Geospatial Center and The Mammoth Site Bonebed.

By summer’s end, each Conservation intern had produced protocols for their assigned tasks and successfully trained two other interns on digitization tasks they had learned. The benefits of this type of training are multifold: multiple young professionals producing and digitally archiving a large volume of specimens and producing protocols that are available online for use by other institutions; Engagement interns gain knowledge in broader museum skills, and Conservation interns gain experience in teaching young adults and peers as they prepare to enter graduate school or enter the workforce.