Jodi Evans '84

Helpful and Knowledgeable Professors

During the first semester of her junior year, Jodi was studying psychology but realized she was pursuing the wrong major. “I had two years until I finished college and felt I had wasted one semester already,” she says, “When my professors learned about my concern, they immediately helped craft a course plan that worked for me and I thought it was amazing. I took that experience to heart and strive to be a source of advice and help to others no matter what the situation.”

Elective Course Helped Choose a Career

As a senior, Jodi took a class called “Intro to Museum Methods” as an elective. “It was a real eye-opener for me,” she says. “From the first day, everything made sense and I considered it a viable career choice.”

Searching for a way to get more museum experience, she found an opportunity to intern/volunteer with the National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C. With that position, she assisted with public events and cataloguing objects in a curatorial department.  

She worked for a year then attended the University of Iowa. She then became a volunteer for the State Historical Society of Iowa branch in Iowa City, cataloguing the small artifact collection. Jodi received a master’s degree in U.S. History. “By the end of the year, I was working in Des Moines for the State Historical Society,” she says. “Initially, I was hired to help move the museum collection into a new building. Later I was promoted to registrar.”

Luther Helps Build a Lifelong Skills

Jodi believes that her education helped her develop the ability to deconstruct a potentially chaotic situation. “I feel this is something I do often in my position as a museum registrar,” she says. “When it comes to figuring something out, a lot of my confidence in what I do and how I do it comes from a stellar grounding in what I learned at Luther. I believe this is the short answer to ‘What does the liberal arts teach a student?’”

A museum registrar manages information about a museum’s collection, including transactions and activities involving objects in the collection or in temporary custody.

Advice for First-Year Students

If you have your life figured out, great. If you don’t, that’s even better. College is a time of balance, doing what’s needed to advance while trying on the personas of what you can be.

—Jodi Evans