Mykell Gates Jamil

Associate Director of Education at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art 

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art, UNC Charlotte (2010)
Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, UNC Charlotte (2010)
Minor in Art History, UNC Charlotte (2010)

Hometown: Missoula, Montana

While a student at UNC Charlotte Mykell Gates Jamil secured an internship at the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art through faculty mentors Maja Godlewska and Marek Ranis. That opportunity eventually led to full-time employment at the museum, where Mykell now oversees a wide array of community and educational programs – everything from the InReach program for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, to Museum Memories for individuals with dementia, to Artists In Schools for K-12 students in the region.

One of her most significant programs is the Jail Arts Initiative, which provides art-making and education opportunities to adult and youth offenders in the county jail. More than 550 inmates have thus far participated in the program, which is based on 30+ years of arts-in-corrections research.

At UNC Charlotte, Mykell not only got her “first taste of the museum world” through her internship, but she also received a thorough grounding in art history, theory, aesthetics, and practice. She remembers fondly a New York City field trip led by painting professor Susan Brenner (now emeritus).

“I believe we were only there for about five days, but Susan made sure we saw as many galleries and museums as possible. We kept detailed journals, and I still have mine to this day. The trip was transformative.”

Mykell says that the quality of the education she received and the successes of other UNC Charlotte art students are the basis for her high recommendation of the program to potential students.

“I am forever grateful for my experiences and the lifetime friends I found in my peers and professors at UNC Charlotte. During this time my understanding of the art world expanded greatly.”