Madeleine Bentley

Madeline Bentley '19

Degree and Class Year

BA ’19


Bainbridge Island, Washington


Sociology and Anthropology


Religious Studies

Can you tell us what you’re doing this summer? What are your basic duties as an intern.

These past few months, I have been working at the Suquamish Museum as an archival intern. The museum houses thousands of manuscripts and newspapers that document the Suquamish Tribe, as well as the relationship between the U.S. government and tribes across the country. This summer, I’ve been helping the curator and her assistant put all of the museum’s documents onto a search engine network so that scholars and lawyers can do their research more efficiently. Each week, we scan, catalog, and summarize oral histories, legal proceedings, and field notes from throughout the tribe’s written history. The most interesting part of my job so far has been getting the chance to learn history directly from the primary articles and manuscripts themselves, rather than through secondary books or in a class. To actually read about events through the opinions and words of the people who lived them is such a privilege.

How has Lewis & Clark supported you in the process of finding and securing your internship?

The skill that I used most to find and earn my current internship was networking! Additionally, the Career Center advisors helped me explore options and think creatively about how my own career will come together and what experiences will give me the skills and mentors to pursue it. Fortunately, I was also granted the money to pursue an unpaid internship this year. It allowed me to give more of my time and energy to the museum and focus on something that will strengthen my skills for a future career.

How do you see this internship leading to a career in your chosen field and aiding in your overall career development?

I am pursuing a career in education and counseling, specifically in the fields of anthropology and sex therapy. I also love museums! All three disciplines relate to identity, research, and heritage. Due to my past research on U.S. and tribal relations, and also because of my connection to the area, I decided to pursue an internship with the Suquamish Tribe and museum. It is still somewhat unclear exactly how these experiences will fit into my future career, but I have honed new research and cataloging skills, gained new insight into the area’s history, and witnessed new ways that history is being constructed and preserved for future generations.