Casey entered Northeastern undeclared with a wide array of passions; she loved reading, writing, art, and history. She graduated from Northeastern in 2013 with a BA in English and minors in art history and philosophy and has gone on to forge a career in art curation.
This is Casey’s Northeastern story…
“I remember hearing from friends and advisers that you will know what school is right for you as soon as you get on campus. And that was true for me at NU – somehow, even in the city, the school felt like a sanctuary. That was important for me coming from rural Oregon. I was also drawn to NU because I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to study. I had always prided myself on being good at math and science, but also loved liberal arts. NU provided opportunities in every field I could imagine going into, and the co-op program seemed like a great way to explore and figure out my path.”
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“I was drawn to the English major because I always really liked writing and reading, but the more I learned about the English major and how it related to history and the analysis of ideas beyond just written words, that’s really when I got a sense of how versatile it is as a field.”
As a sophomore, Casey particularly loved an American literature survey course that combined analysis of early American literature with photography from that time period. Using the same tools and ideas to think about both mediums helped Casey realize that the skills she could develop as an English major were applicable to all of her interests. After having taken courses in many areas, this was the class that prompted her to “take the plunge” and declare English as her degree.
Casey’s first co-op was at the Smithsonian American Art Museum working on the quarterly journal American Art. The co-op gave her a firm understanding of how editing and publishing can be related to art history and research, and helped her realize that art curating was a field of work that she truly wanted to pursue.
Her second co-op was at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, right across the street from Northeastern University’s main campus. Casey was employed in the education department, where she worked with family programs and in the galleries.
In combination with her first co-op, this experience helped her figure out where her place was in the art world.
Casey has found that the essay writing skills she developed as an English major at Northeastern are directly applicable to curating an art display.
In September 2014, Casey became the manager of exhibitions at the New Art Center in Newton, MA. In this position, she used her organizational and narrative-writing skills to develop art exhibitions.
Casey Curry has been admitted to the Master’s program in the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Oregon. Additionally, she has been awarded a Graduate Teaching Fellowship in the department and plans to begin researching contemporary curatorial practices at the intersection of contemporary art, new media studies, and ecological design. As part of her Graduate Teaching Fellowship, she will be assisting with undergraduate art history courses and faculty research projects.
Casey’s undergraduate English major was supplemented by minors in Art History and Philosophy, which, together with her experience working in art institutions, prepared her for this exciting next step. An Oregon native, she is looking forward to continuing her studies near her family.
Casey’s interview is part of a series produced and edited by Sebastian Alberdi, Elizabeth Kennedy, Elana Plimack, and Maxwell Jackson, with assistance from Chelsey Meyer, for Spring 2016 ENGL 2740: Writing and Community Engagement, taught by Dr. Ellen Cushman, Northeastern University’s CSSH Dean’s Professor of Civic Sustainability; Professor of English; Director, Civic Sustainability, Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives.
Northeastern Department of English