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National Museum of Australia program offers life-changing experience for First Nations cultural workers

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Applications are now open for the third international Encounters Fellowship Program offered by the National Museum of Australia, with six First Nations cultural workers to be selected for an intensive professional development journey.

Encounters Fellowships offers Fellows a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to gain professional development in a hands-on program that includes a placement at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra and experience at partner cultural institutions in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.

Successful applicants will work alongside museum, gallery and cultural sector specialists, gaining behind-the-scenes experience in areas including collections research and preservation, exhibition planning, digital storytelling, educational programming, Indigenous design thinking, and project management.

Encounters Fellowships manager Shona Coyne said the program is "a bridge between Indigenous Australian cultural workers and leading Australian and international cultural institutions and staff, enabling a truly local to global exchange".

"The program's in-depth and hands-on engagement is both professionally and personally transformative, equipping fellows with new knowledge, networks and skills which they can apply in their own community organisation or enterprise," she said.

National Museum director Dr Mathew Trinca said the museum is "thrilled to support the next generation of Indigenous cultural, creative and heritage workers and to give them such an extraordinary international experience".

"Previous fellows have gone on to achieve remarkable success in a range of cultural fields, having gained skills, knowledge and experience during the fellowship program," Dr Trinca said.

Fellows receive a $1,500 weekly stipend and an allowance for travel, accommodation and living costs for the duration of the Program.

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