Sam Boswell ’17

11 July 2016

Sam Boswell Action

Office: Studio Art
Position: Ceramics & Sculpture Monitor
Majors: Studio Art and Computer Science

What do you do in these positions?

In ceramics, I mix clay and glazes for the ceramics classes. I also clean the kiln shelves after a firing, along with general maintenance of the studio. Ceramics workers also help with Empty Bowls, which is a national event (but also local to Carleton), where we make anywhere from 500 to 700 bowls to support the Northfield Community Action Center. Student organizations and houses make soup, and local businesses and Bon Appétit provide other food for the event.

As a sculpture monitor, I oversee students as they work in the metals or wood shops and provide help when they need it. I also make sure that everything in the shop is running well, and fix any issues that arise in the shop.

How did you get your positions?

I asked Kelly (Connole, the ceramics professor) the summer before my freshman year if I could take Beginning Ceramics (Throwing) my freshman fall. Instead of allowing me into the class, she said I could work in the studio. I have been working there ever since.

I took Intro to Sculpture my freshman spring, and at the end of the class, Stephen (Mohring, the sculpture professor) asked if any of us wanted to be monitors. I said yes and started working the next fall.

What new skills have you acquired?

I have learned to act when something goes wrong. If something isn’t working properly in the shops or the studio, I game plan and try to solve the problem. While sometimes the solution is to ask and wait for advice, I feel comfortable asking for help or direction when needed, and can further progress on my own when I do not need direction.

How will your student employment experience help you in your future?

In a similar vein, I have learned more about problem solving and constructing a solution (whether temporary or permanent) on my own, along with asking for help when it is needed.

What type of person do you feel is best suited for these positions?

For both positions: Just being friendly and willing to learn is so much of the environment that as long as you have basic knowledge of either ceramics, metals or wood you can help others and learn more yourself on the job.

What do you like best about your student employment positions?

I get to interact with students who are currently taking studio classes, and I get to stay involved in the community around those classes, even when I am not taking those classes myself. I have built and sustained friendships through those communities, and working in the studio allows me to keep up with the environment of the class.

Posted In