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Museum interviews 9-year-old for head curator job

11:38 PM, Nov 27, 2012   |    comments
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Like most third graders, he has to do his homework at Kyffin Elementary in Golden. Unlike most third graders, Navant wants to run the Denver Museum of Nature and Science.

"I might most likely get it," Navant said.

This summer, Kirk Johnson left his post as head curator after 22 years with the DMNS. He accepted a job as executive director of the Smithsonian in Washington D.C.

When Navant heard this, he decided to write himself a letter of recommendation, fill out the application, create a detailed portfolio, and send it to museum officials. He believes his passion for paleontology qualifies him to run the whole museum.

"I have had lots of experience with dinosaurs and pre-historic life and I have had lots of little digs that I went on," Navant said.

Maria Hannon is the director of human resources for the DMNS. She was so impressed with his application that she took Navant in for a real job interview.

"[It's the] best interview I've ever done in my career," Hannon said. It was so much fun."

Navant truly believes he can do the job. After all, he published his first book on dinosaurs, Step Through the Eras, when he was 7-years-old. He is currently working on publishing his second book.

"He's done some pretty impressive things for a 9-year-old," Hannon said.

Navant says he can do the job despite his responsibilities as a 3rd grader.

"I might balance it like after school," Navant said. "I go to work for a little bit of time and then like one day on the weekend."

The museum is still conducting first round interviews this week for the job opening which has attracted applicants from all over the country. Navant's father, John, says regardless of who gets the job, his son has learned a lot.

"He truly believes he has a real shot at this position," said John Navant. "It's an experience that he'll be able to use throughout his life."

In the meantime, Navant will continue playing with his friends, doing his homework, and writing his second dinosaur book.
"I'm just waiting to hear if I'm going to get closer and closer to the job," said Navant.

(KUSA-TV © 2012 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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