How to Apply

Please apply using the Smithsonian online application system. Paper applications will not be considered.

Please be aware that complete applications must include the following:

  • Internship Program application form
  • Academic transcripts (unofficial are acceptable)
  • Personal essay (use this to tell us how the internship will advance your academic/career goals)
  • Two letters of reference

Essential Tips for the Online Application

  • Do NOT submit your application until all necessary components are uploaded (i.e. transcripts, personal essay, resume). Once submitted, you cannot upload or change anything within the application.
  • An unofficial or official transcript can be uploaded by first scanning the document and saving it as a pdf or jpeg. Please do not mail the transcript separately.
  • Make sure that you click the “send email” button. This triggers the system to email your referees with instructions for uploading the reference letter. Please advise your reference of this in advance.


  • Spring (January – May) Deadline: October 15th
  • Summer (June – August) Deadline: March 1st
  • Fall (September – December) Deadline: July 1st

Qualifications vary depending upon the project, but most are for upper-level undergraduate and graduate students. Student status, however, is not a prerequisite. Opportunities are generally not available for high school students. Please read our Internship Opportunities before selecting projects on your application.

The Museum does not award college credit, but many U.S. colleges and universities will recognize academic work performed while interning at the Museum. Contact your academic advisor for instructions on how to receive credit.

Most NMAH internships are unpaid volunteer positions. Some funded internships are available on a competitive basis through the Office of Fellowships. (202-633-7070)

If you have any questions about the application process, please email us via our contact form. If you have questions concerning the SOLAA application, please go to the Help section on the SOLAA website.