he fundamental role of the conservation professional is to preserve and restore, as appropriate, cultural property for present and future generations. We have a lot to learn from the experiences and events of people who have gone before us. However, we can't learn much from the past if we don't have records of it. Imagine how much history is lost to us when an ancient artifact is destroyed -- by perfectly well-meaning people who want to save it. This is an intensive, fast-paced learning experience that you will undertake in four consecutive semesters. You'll start your classes in September and spend your first three semesters, during the fall, winter and summer, at the college. Following your introduction to the field of conservation, you will gain experience in the care and handling of most common museum materials, including ceramics, glass, stone, metals, wooden objects, leather and proteinaceous materials, textiles, works of art on paper, books, archival materials, photographs and modern materials. Updated curriculum reflects best practices routed in ethical applications. Once you've learned the theory and practical skills, you'll treat museum artifacts from local, regional, and national sites. Complementary courses, workshops, assignments, and community-based projects will offer off-campus opportunities to practice conservation methods. A full-time, unpaid, curriculum-based internship in your final semester (September to December) provides an invaluable learning and work experience.

Why Choose Fleming

Fleming College's Cultural Heritage Conservation Management program is the only college-level training in this field in Canada. It is widely recognized as providing the optimum synthesis of art and science; graduates are appreciated for their professional ethics and standards,knowledge of sustainable preservation practices, and hands-on experience in the field.

Work Experience

There are many opportunities to get practical experience both at the college and off-campus. In your fourth semester, you will take on a challenging, full-time, curriculum-based internship at an approved site. Students should be prepared to relocate for the internship, to pay full tuition fees, and be self-supporting during this semester. You can negotiate your own internship with faculty assistance and several students have participated in internships abroad. The internship is an unpaid study experience.Students are responsible for negotiating and funding requirements for international internships including visas, travel and insurance. Every reasonable attempt will be made to fit students to appropriate sites. Students in this program have participated in internships at the following sites:

  • Parks Canada - Conservation Laboratories
  • Museum of Civilization
  • Peterborough Museum & Archives
  • Bata Shoe Museum
  • Royal British Columbia Museum
  • Royal Alberta Museum
  • Historic Royal Palaces

Satisfactory completion of the internship is a prerequisite for graduation.

Is this You?

In this program you require:

  • respect for tangible and intangible heritage
  • a love of history
  • good colour perception
  • visual acuity
  • manual dexterity
  • ability to work in teams
  • a sense of humour
  • time management skills
  • good communication/team skills

Looking for an Advantage?

Experience or certification in the following are assets:

  • Digital photography
  • Photoshop, Adobe Suite
  • Fall Arrest Training
  • French language skills
  • Fire Prevention Training
  • Firearms Possession and Acquisition Licence (P.A.L.)
  • Experience working with databases
  • Smart Serve Food Handling
  • Other languages
  • Valid driver's licence
  • Criminal Reference Check Vulnerable Sector

Career Opportunities

Expect to find work in heritage, historical, or cultural organizations and centres, such as archives, museums, historic sites, cultural/heritage institutions, and conservation labs. The employment rate of graduates is very impressive, especially if you are willing to move for work, and take the initiative in developing a network of contacts in the field. Job titles include:

  • conservation technician
  • museum technician
  • curatorial assistant
  • conservator
  • museum registrar
  • heritage interpreter
  • preservation officer

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • An Ontario College diploma or a university degree in a related field, or the equivalent
  • College (C) Grade 12 Chemistry ( minimum mandatory requirement)
  • All applicants will be required to demonstrate course credit in the mandatory Chemistry course
  • Applicants who do not meet the minimum academic admission requirements will be considered on an individual basis by the program coordinator. This does not include the mandatory Chemistry requirement, needed to be successful in the program.

Health Requirements and Certifications

If you have a complex medical history, we strongly advise you to discuss your concerns with the program co-ordinator, and to consult with your doctor. You must update Tetanus and all immunizations prior to the start of classes. In addition, students are required to pay certification fees and present current certification for Standard First Aid, CPR (C Level), WHMIS and Ladder training and a current Criminal Reference Check Vulnerable Sector Screening. Please provide proof of documentation at the start of classes.

Additional Costs

You should plan to spend approximately $1,900 on books, supplies, and miscellaneous costs. Students are also required to purchase a few tools, brushes, lab materials and appropriate health and safety equipment. Additional fees may be required for field trips or specialized workshops. A laptop with Adobe Creative Suite 6 software and a digital SLR camera are assets. Students should also consider taking advantage of student rates to join industry professional associations.

Program taught in:
English

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