Meet our Educators! 

Miss Lakin; Education Specialist | 563-336-7298

Miss Lakin is an Education Specialist at the Putnam. She provides programming through learning experiences for a variety of audiences at the Museum and in the community, and provides enrichment for after-school programs in the Quad City area.  Lakin started working at the Putnam in 2015. She enjoys connecting with and serving visitors in multiple ways, and engaging audiences in a variety of different settings.
Lakin received her bachelor’s degree in Book Arts and Graphic Design, with a minor in Business Management from St. Ambrose University. At Ambrose, she enjoyed working at the Catich Gallery and in the St. Ambrose Archives and Special Collections department.  Her passion for community and education grew during her internship experience as an education assistant at the Figge Art Museum.  At the Putnam, she enjoys teaching science and history in interactive ways through hands-on activity and experimentation. She finds encouraging curiosity and creative thinking while making connections to everyday life with the diverse exhibits featured at the Putnam rewarding.   
Currently, her favorite area in the museum features the Putnam’s 150th anniversary community photos. The display spans across the walls of the upper and lower levels of the Putnam’s grand lobby. The black and white photos, taken by Tom Styrkowicz, make an impact in the large space and celebrate the diverse community members of the Quad City area. She loves that community members came together at the Putnam to celebrate their history, experiences, family, and personalities in and through each photograph. 
If Lakin could have one item from the Putnam’s collection to call her own she would love to have an item from the Beautiful Bugs display cases. She would love to have the beetle and butterfly specimens that are arranged in a circular burst pattern to have for her self. She loves that the bugs are displayed in a way that is elegant and focuses on their beauty. The display highlights how scientists and artist find inspiration from iridescence found in nature.

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.”
Dr. SeussOh, The Places You Will Go!


Miss Erica; Education Specialist | 563-324-1933, ext. 235


Miss Erica is an Education Specialist at the Putnam. She splits her time between providing programming to the public, both in-house and afterschool outreach, and assisting with the IMMERSE program.
Miss Erica has a Bachelor’s in Classical Archaeology and Ancient History with a minor in Religious Studies specializing in Islamic Studies from Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, PA. She interned at the Putnam in the collections, exhibits and education departments before leaving to get her Master’s. She received her Master’s in Library and Information Science with a minor in Museum Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL. While obtaining her Master’s, she completed her capstone working at the Krannert Art Museum on campus, developing an outreach program to older adult care facilities called Art Reflections. In her free time she volunteered at the Spurlock Museum on campus and the Museum of the Grand Prairie in Mahomet, IL. All of her projects are available to view on her website
Miss Erica’s favorite items in the collection are not on display, but she loves the Grecian amphorai kept in storage. If she could, Miss Erica would take one from the collection vaults home, however, they are behind several locked doors and she doesn’t know how to pick locks.
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world."
–Nelson Mandela


Miss Bridget; Education Services Coordinator | 563-336-7308

Miss Bridget is the latest addition to the Education team at The Putnam Museum and Science Center. She joined us as The Education Services Coordinator in August of 2018. Bridget has a Bachelor’s in Sociology from Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa. She has a strong connection to The Quad Cities and remembers visiting the Putnam on field trips as a child and more recently with her daughter’s school groups. After spending many years in a Sales and Merchandising Career, Bridget decided to make a change to a position with a purpose, and she looks forward to assisting school and youth groups to create their own memories of the Putnam.
“Yes, the mummies are still here” is the answer to the question she was most frequently asked upon telling friends and family she was accepting a position at the Putnam. Her favorite part of the museum is not an exhibit at all but all of the historic clothes in the archives. She would love to borrow some for her own closet to dress as F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Daisy or Jane Austen’s Elizabeth Bennet. 
“Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens” 
― Jimi Hendrix
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