Monica Ramsey, BFA ’01

Photo of Monica

Monica Ramsey is vice president of experience development and family learning at the largest children’s museum in the world: the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis (TCM).

She oversees a team of more than 150 people who steward the museum’s collection, design and develop exhibitions and programming, support school field trips and teachers’ use of the museum in their classrooms, and manage a 7.5-acre sports experience, an international traveling exhibit program, and the research and evaluation team.

It’s a big job, and one she loves.

“Remember the anticipation of a field trip, and how exciting it was to finally be in the place you’d been looking forward to? I keep that in mind. We make sure to stop and touch the dinosaur bones whenever we can.”

Monica appreciates the opportunity to learn from many recognized experts, from paleontologists to performing artists, graphic designers to teachers, and so many more.

“I am grateful for what they teach me every day,” she said.

At half a million square feet and with 1.2 million visitors per year, TCM has exhibitions, programming, and a collection of more than 134,000 objects that elevate stories across the arts, humanities, science, and popular culture.

Monica delights in elevating her teams.

“I love the variety of what they’ve created over the years. We are educators, storytellers, scientists, artists, and performers with experiences ranging from exploring the fossils dug by our team from our site in Wyoming to listening to the stories of Anne Frank, Ruby Bridges, and Malala Yousafzai.”

Elaborating, Monica noted that theater also is an important part of the TCM experience.

“This helps transport visitors into a story and allows for deeper personal connections. I especially loved working with Malala’s parents to create a permanent exhibition about their family and work, and the 25,000-square foot expansion of our iconic Dinosphere experience. The slate of initiatives we have will be my favorites yet, including the Latino Cultural Initiative, which will greatly expand our work to serve our neighbors.”

Monica’s passion stems from her curiosity and dedication to lifelong learning.

“We bring the world to Indianapolis, and we celebrate the amazing things our neighbors are doing. Our vision to help kids see their potential in the world gets me going; if we can show children the many ways they can help get us to Mars or recreate a place in Thailand or Peru that shows how children like them are different in ways that don’t feel so distant – that’s the best.”

ONU helped Monica mine her interests and talents.

“The knowledge, experience and work ethic I graduated with set me up to begin a career that is in its 20th year.”

And she appreciates her former ONU professors, especially the late Nils Reiss.

“He and other ONU professors recognize the critical point they enter a young person’s life and are aware of how they empower their independence and challenge them to stay grounded and connected.”