The Lab for Teen Thinkers is free public humanities program that prepares rising juniors and seniors for future academic and professional success through civic development, mentoring, and internship opportunities. Participants have access to Bard Graduate Center’s research institute, study collection, and library with over 55,000 volumes. The program offers a behind-the-scenes look at how New York City museums function and gives teens the unique opportunity to study objects and artifacts with a variety of scholars, curators, and graduate students working in the fields of material culture, decorative arts, and design history. Teen Thinkers contribute their research and scholarship with the larger academic community at Bard Graduate Center, influencing how others might learn and think about material culture. The Lab culminates with an opportunity to apply for a paid internship at Bard Graduate Center.

Penrose Retica was a participant in the 2017 class of The Lab for Teen Thinkers and currently attends Swarthmore College. She was advised by Assistant Professor Meredith B. Linn on her research project.