Youth Ambassador Program
Tweens and teens interested in art are invited to join this unique program led by Museum Educator Tami Wood! Make new friends and learn about artwork on view as you enjoy a special behind-the-scenes look at how a museum operates and communicates with its visitors.
Ambassadors participate in several multi-day projects each year, designed to develop art interpretation, public speaking, and writing skills. Youth Ambassadors have led tours at public events, created video content for Heckscher.org, written articles for Family Activity Guides, and conducted interviews with staff. Projects are both virtual and in-person, following the Museum’s Health and Safety Guidelines.
Participants will receive community service hour credits upon successful completion of each project.
Open to students in 5th through 9th grade.
“I like the Heckscher Youth Ambassador Program because we get to dig deeper into the art and we get the opportunity to work on our leadership, teamwork, public speaking, and art skills.”
– Sylvie Schneider
2022-2023 Youth Ambassador Program
During this school year, the Heckscher Youth Ambassadors led in-person tours of the Museum’s exhibitions, sharing their observations and insights with family and friends. Their experience in the Youth Ambassador Program culminated with their creation of videos about their favorite artworks from Long Island’s Best 2023. Via QR codes on gallery wall labels and links on the Museum website, all museum visitors, both in-person and online, can now enjoy the unique perspectives of these student leaders.
Spring 2022 Videos inspired by Long Island’s Best 2022
The Youth Ambassadors discuss their favorite artwork from Long Island’s Best 2022 in these videos. Students visited the Museum for several trainings and learned about the Long Island’s Best 2022 exhibition. They then each chose their favorite work of art and wrote a script. After practicing, they created short videos about their artwork and why they would vote for it for the Visitors Choice Awards.
Winter 2022 Richard Mayhew and Moonstruck exhibitions Tour
In January and February 2022, the Ambassadors explored the exhibitions Richard Mayhew: Reinventing Landscape and Moonstruck: Lunar Art from the Collection. Through conversations, games, and activities, each student made and shared their own personal connections to the works of art. Then, working independently and as a group, they researched their favorite artworks in order to create a tour featuring their selections.
Fall 2021 The Heckscher Celebrates 100 Tour
In October and November 2021, before the building’s opening hours, the Heckscher Museum of Art was a hub of activity. Youth Ambassadors met each week to learn about the Museum, its art, and each other. With the galleries to themselves, the Ambassadors explored the exhibition, The Heckscher Museum Celebrates 100: Tracing History, Inspiring the Future. Through conversations, games, and activities, each student made and shared their own personal connections to the works of art. Then, working independently and as a group, they researched their favorite artworks in order to create a tour featuring their selections. Read more
Long Island’s Best 2021 Artwork Interpretation
Now an annual tradition, youth ambassadors explored the high school juried exhibition Long Island’s Best: Young Artists at The Heckscher Museum 2021 featuring artwork by 83 high school students from across Long Island. They then had the opportunity to create their own videos discussing their favorite artwork. With QR codes leading to each video printed in the galleries, visitors in the museum as well as online visitors can now enjoy all of their videos as they explore the artwork!
Career Paths in the Arts
Did you ever wonder about what it would be like to work at an art museum? Our Youth Ambassadors certainly did! The group began 2021 ready to learn about new and exciting career paths. Youth Ambassadors began by interviewing the Museum’s Curator, Karli Wurzelbacher, and Exhibition Manager/Registrar, Kerrilyn Blee. Throughout the year, they will interview other Heckscher staff, learning just how many interesting new careers there are to study! Watch each video and find out what our Youth Ambassadors have learned!
Long Island’s Best 2020 Artwork Interpretation
In 2020, students had the opportunity to create their own videos discussing their favorite artwork from the high school juried exhibition Long Island’s Best: Young Artists at The Heckscher Museum 2020.
“These Youth Ambassadors led live Museum tours in the past, but adapted easily to working virtually!” said Educator Tami Wood.