BETHEL — The Maine Mineral and Gem Museum welcomes its first student intern, Myles Felch of Union.
He graduated from the University of Maine at Farmington with a Bachelor of Arts in geology. He will be living in Bethel until late July to complete his internship. Felch will begin a Master of Science degree in mineralogy, petrology and pegmatology at the University of New Orleans in August.
His study of rocks in Maine’s quarries and mines has helped him catalog minerals for the museum. His expertise in geology is an asset to the museum as it makes progress on collection care and exhibition plans for next summer’s opening. The internship is a reflection of the museum’s commitment to education for students of all ages, fostering science and community history research.
Also joining MMGM is Fred Bailey of Andover, who received a Bachelor of Arts from Colby College in 2007.
As the museum’s collections assistant, he is cataloging and photographing rock and mineral collections. A Libra Foundation and Maine Winter Sports Center-supported athlete, Bailey is training to compete in the 2014 Winter Olympics United States Ski Team.
He has his own firm, Fred Bailey Trail Design, with many projects in Aroostook County, from community snowshoe trails to a sprint course for the Junior Olympics Skiing Championships. Bailey teaches youth programming at Black Mountain Ski Area in Rumford.
Both men have been essential to the museum as it makes progress on collection care with guidance from museum trustee and cataloging volunteer Stephen T. Seames.
The Maine Mineral and Gem Museum plans call for the new museum in two adjacent buildings on Main Street in Bethel, opening in Summer 2013. It will have two floors of exhibit halls, a museum store, a multi-purpose lecture and classroom space, archival and research facilities, and offices, and educational programs for children and adults. A future membership organization, fundraising and an entrepreneurial business plan will help insure the museum’s future.
The MMGM collection numbers thousands of outstanding rocks, minerals, gems and meteorite specimens, as well as rare books, maps and mining ephemera. The collection has been assembled by Dr. Lawrence T.P. Stifler and Mary McFadden Esq., residents of Albany Township since 1978. They own the Bumpus Mine, which produced some of the world’s largest beryl crystals in 1928, and have made educational tours of the Bumpus Mine available seasonally to school groups.
For more information, contact Gena Schwam, director, Maine Mineral and Gem Museum, at 824-3036, or firstname.lastname@example.org. The museum office is located at 57 Main St., Bethel.