Gabrielle Riter ‘22
Major: Art History
Minor: Classics and Archaeology
I am an art history major and a classics and archaeology minor. Both of these subjects are passions of mine outside of school, so it was amazing to be able to study them full time. I was involved in HerCampus, an online community and magazine dedicated to college women, and Alpha Chi Omega, one of the sororities on campus. A big aspect of Alpha Chi Omega is their philanthropy, which is focused on domestic violence awareness. I loved being able to make a difference while on campus and it was also a great experience to be surrounded by other strong women I could look up to during my time at LMU.
One of the most important aspects of my time at LMU was my work study job at the library. I began working in Hannon Library’s Circulation Department in January of 2019 and have loved every minute of it. Before working there, I never would have considered librarianship to be a career path I would pursue. I soon realized that with librarianship, I could make my love for learning, reading, art, and public service into a career.
After deciding librarianship was the path I wanted to pursue, I took a second job working in the Archives and Special Collections department. I learned so much about the public and private aspects of librarianship, and the different paths I could pursue within the field. Working at the library has opened other doors for me as well. For example, last summer I did an internship at the Getty Conservation Institute, and I believe that my extensive library experience along with my art history background was the reason I was hired.
When I graduate, I will attend UCLA to pursue a master’s degree in library and information science. I’m not exactly sure what path within the field I will choose— I can either work in the private sphere and work with art and rare books in the archives of a museum or academic library, or I can work in the public sphere, where I would want to pursue children’s or young adult librarianship. I’m hoping internships in the future will help me decide, but I know I will enjoy either path. I feel very prepared for this next step in my life due to my time at LMU and all the guidance I have received from my professors and managers.
What I will miss most about LMU is the feeling of community I have here. In both the Art History and Classics departments, every professor I have had has shown interest in my aspirations and ideas. I’ve received so much support from my professors and peers that I am so grateful for, and I don’t think I would have had the same experience at a larger school. Overall, the Art History department is very supportive and seeing the success of my professors and peers inspired me to work harder during my time at LMU.
My advice for underclassmen would be to get involved with organizations and things that you like, not what everyone else is doing or what you think you should be doing. I am a transfer student, and when I transferred to LMU I threw myself into so many different activities I didn’t even like just for the sake of having it look good on a resume. Once I focused on what was important to me and put all of my energy into those few things, I found a career that I am excited to pursue, a very supportive and inspiring academic environment, and I met some of my best friends.