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Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art Partnership Studentship

The Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, or MIMA, Partnership Studentship provides an opportunity to undertake a placement at the Institute. This studentship has a value of £1000 and will be of particular interest to students on the Modern and Contemporary Art pathway.

  • Funding: £1000
  • Academic year: 2021/22
  • Open to: International (including EU) and UK (home) students
  • Qualification level: Postgraduate taught
Applications for 2021/22 are closed.


Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA) connects art, people and ideas as an international art gallery and museum. We commission, collect and re-think modern and contemporary art, and make creative, civic space.

MIMA works closely with local and global partners to put art into action. We build public participation as a cultural and community hub - ethics of equity, diversity and inclusion drive our work. Part of Teesside University, MIMA is powered by a vision to positively contribute to society.

We are seeking an applicant who is enthusiastic and self-motivated. They will have excellent word-processing skills and written communication, and will have the resources to use the internet and to access online journals and articles. If you would like to discuss your access needs or have any special requirements we are happy to discuss these.

The Middlesbrough Collection of art and craft has been collected over 150 years; including work made by artists based in the Tees Valley and internationally, the collection is the area’s art historical depository and encompasses 2,250 pieces. As well as an annually changing display at MIMA, each year, artworks from the collection travel the world in significant exhibitions that progress the field of art and ideas.

"My time at mima gave me the hands-on, practical experience of putting to work the theory and knowledge that my modules offered."

- Margot Miltenberger, mima Partnership Studentship

"Working so closely with the curatorial team has allowed me to gain a great amount of experience into what it is like to work in a gallery."

- Charlotte Trapp, mima Partnership Studentship

"Having access to the work in mima's collection has provided a great source of inspiration for my dissertation project."

- Scarlett Campbell, mima Partnership Studentship


Open to International (including EU) and UK (home) students.

Open to students in the Department of History of Art.

Studentship applications are welcomed from all full-time students, and part-time students in their second year of study, on the MA in History of Art, or a related pathway degree, regardless of fee status (Home, EU or Overseas).

How to apply

Application deadline: Monday 25 October 2021, 11am BST

Please submit your CV and an enthusiastic personal statement of no more than 800 words which explains your interest in, and suitability for, this partnership opportunity. In particular, we will be looking for:

  • your awareness of, interest in and commitment to the period/theme/collection(s) of the partner institution
  • any relevant skills, knowledge and/or experience
  • how you see the award fitting in with and facilitating your career plans.

You are advised to consult the information on this page, and the gallery’s own websitebefore you apply. Please email your personal statement to history-of-art@york.ac.uk by the deadline.

Terms and conditions

The successful applicant will undertake a three-week placement with MIMA in May or June 2022. The placement is timed to take place after the end of the taught component of the MA programme and before dissertation research begins in earnest.

The placement would be a mixture of working from home and working in the gallery.

The student will be supported throughout by the Curatorial team and introduced to the wider MIMA team and programme. Projects will be shaped collaboratively to meet their interests, experiences and existing knowledge.

The projects will be research-based and centre on the Middlesbrough Collection, forthcoming exhibitions and collection displays.

Contact details

History of Art Postgraduate Admissions Team

Stephanie King/Fiona Watson

Margot Miltenberger, previous recipient of the MIMA Partnership Studentship, enjoyed the opportunity the placement gave her to direct her experience based on her own interests.

What did your work at MIMA entail?

My role at MIMA was adaptable, but mostly involved researching material for the upcoming exhibition. This included collaborating on an interactive digital tool for the public and researching material for display. I also had various tasks surrounding the permanent collection, such as a location audit and gathering material for an upcoming collaboration with Art Weekender.

What experiences would you say have been most useful or unexpected?

I most appreciated the flexibility of the team at MIMA – while I had plenty to do, I was always encouraged to take part in any public events, linger over community lunches, and observe the many aspects of putting on an exhibition. Participation in meetings and miscellaneous tasks allowed me to get a feel for the many roles within an art institution. The most unexpected thing was how excited I was to see the exhibition opening – I had no idea how thrilled I would be to see the public interacting with material I’d helped put together!

Who did you work with, and how did the institution make use of you?

I primarily worked with the curatorial team, but had the opportunity to direct my experience based on my preferences. I did a significant amount of research for the upcoming exhibition, which included many independent hours as well as collaboration with another student and the assistant curators.

I was lucky enough to see my project through to the end – helping display the material I’d gathered, witness the exhibition coming together and celebrate its opening. I also helped with various tasks as they arose – such as organising commission documents, using the TMS database for a location audit, helping return a loan, and assist with the set-up of a new app.

What do you value most about your experience with the institution?

I most appreciated being allowed to experience the whole process of an exhibition. From researching, to the hands-on work of putting it up for display, to hearing the artists describe their work on the exhibition opening day. The whole experience gave me such respect for the work and detail that goes into producing an exhibition.

How has your work with MIMA enhanced your studies at York?

My time at MIMA gave me the hands-on, practical experience of putting to work the theory and knowledge that my modules offered. Interacting directly with art objects was especially fun, as well as hearing artists describe their own work directly.

Do you feel it has been helpful with career planning or improved your job prospects, and if yes, how?

Definitely – even simple things like knowledge of TMS and experience handling loans is something I’ve since seen required on job applications. But more importantly, it gave me the opportunity to observe and experience many of the roles within an art institution and determine whether I would enjoy or be suited to any of them.

Would you recommend it to future students?

Absolutely. My time spent at MIMA was never a detraction from my time studying and was even a welcome balance during the early days of developing my dissertation. If only to see if it’s not for you, it’s a very unique opportunity, fun and inspiring!


Read about the experiences of other previous recipients of the MIMA Partnership Studentship: