Laura Roa, USA (Class of 0)

Laura Roa smiling standing in front of the Royal Exhibition Building World Heritage Site in Melbourne

(Heritage Dual Degree 2023-2024)

At the time that I applied to the Dual Degree program, I was looking for opportunities to enhance my Heritage Master's by pursuing a subject I was deeply passionate about — Museum Studies. Since conducting my Bachelor's in History, I have been fascinated by museums and other cultural heritage institutions; thus, the Dual Degree program would have enabled me to examine these institutions in an innovative context and with a greater international focus.

I never could have anticipated how rewarding this program would be — professionally, academically, and personally. In addition to engaging with relevant and thought-provoking course material, I learned a great deal from being in an academic and professional setting previously unfamiliar to me. I was fortunate to visit a variety of museums, galleries, and libraries within Melbourne as well as on my travels to other parts of the country: from the Old Timers Mine & Museum in Coober Pedy, surrounded by the expansive Outback, to the Australian Museum in the bustling city of Sydney. At every visit, I discovered something new to influence my perspectives. Then, as part of our Heritage in the Field course, which provided an opportunity for us to apply our skills in the industry, my team had the privilege to consult for the National Trust of Australia (Victoria) and to glean professional insights from dark heritage places.