General Internship Application Pools

Our NMAH Internship Program application is currently open for both Spring and Summer 2023.

Only complete SOLAA applications will be considered; this means, at its most basic, a submitted application on SOLAA for the correct semester that includes a learning goals essay and a resume, with the option to also include a transcript/class list or letters of reference. Please note the following due dates:

Spring 2023 applications for the NMAH Internship Program are due November 3, 2022, at 12 PM EST. Spring intern selections should be made by late November. Spring internships should expect to start at the beginning of February, and internships can last through mid-May.

Summer 2023 applications for the NMAH Internship Program will be due January 17, 2023, at 12 PM EST. Summer intern selections should be made by early March. Summer internships should expect to start at the beginning of June, and internships can last through mid-August.

Please note: some specific internship opportunities are only offered in spring or in summer—not both. Some internships are offered every semester. Please check the internship post to determine when it’s expected to take place. If you’d like to apply for the same internship for spring and for summer, please submit two applications—one for spring, and one for summer. To learn how to submit multiple applications easily, check out our How to Apply guide.

Internships may also be posted on a rolling basis. To get updates about new internship opportunities as they are posted, you’re encouraged to sign up to our recruitment mailing list using this form.

 

For any other questions, please check out our NMAH Internship FAQ or Office of Internship Program's FAQ. Thanks for your interest in NMAH internships!
 

Many offices at NMAH are not actively seeking interns but may still review applications from interested applicants. Check out the information below to learn more about our offices where you can submit a general application for an internship at NMAH.

 

Some of these teams may be specifically recruiting for an internship! Check out our upcoming NMAH internship opportunities to learn more.

Not sure if NMAH is the right fit for your professional learning goals? You can also check out other internship opportunities all over the Smithsonian!

Public History: Collections, Curatorial, and Digital Access and Archives

Interns involved in Public History: Collections, Curatorial, and Digital Access and Archives learn about preserving, documenting, interpreting, and making accessible the collections and scholarship of the museum in support of the museum's mission and in accord with standards of quality and practice that maintain the museum's leadership in the field. This office provides vision for the museum's collections, research, and exhibition development activities; coordinates and integrates activities in the departments of history and collections management services and ensures responsible and coordinated management of resources within and between these two departments; and aids all of curatorial affairs in prioritizing projects and program activities.

This office is made up of several teams and divisions:

There are also different initiatives and topics that you may be interested in, such as:

Interested in submitting a Public History: Collections, Curatorial, and Digital Access and Archives application?

In your learning goals essay, be sure to specify which specific division(s) or initiatives within the larger office you would like to intern with! Here are some tips for your application:

  • Some of our teams may already be recruiting for an internship; check out upcoming NMAH internship opportunities to learn more!
  • Interested in a particular curatorial division, such as the Division of Work and Industry? Explain in your essay why you're interested in learning more about their particular work and collection!
  • Interested in our Preservation Services teams? Be sure to include informal skills in your resume, too, such as hand skills (sewing, knitting, etc.) as well as any formal object conservation experience you may have. 
  • Make sure that your learning goals essay includes some sort of focus--in historical topic or theme, particular museums skills, or collections--so that the Interns & Fellows Program Manager can make sure your application is sent to the best possible mentor match!

Public History: Education and Programming

Interns involved in Public History: Education and Programming  learn how to use history to create experiences that encourage meaningful conversation, expand perspectives, and inspire learning, innovation and active participation in civic life and learn to challenge  audiences to consider their important role in shaping a more humane future. This mean works to provide a comprehensive learning experience for all of the museum’s audiences, from daily visitors to program attendees to website and social media interactions.

This office is made up of different teams, including: 

There are also different initiatives and topics that you may be interested in, such as:

  • Creating digital educational resources, such as Learning Labs
  • Producing virtual museum programming experiences
  • Drafting children's literature using research
Interested in submitting a Public History: Education and Programming application?

In your learning goals essay, be sure to specify which specific teams or programs within the larger offices you would like to intern with! Here are some tips for your application:

  • Some of our teams, such as the Program in Latino History and Culture, may already be recruiting for an internship; check out upcoming NMAH internship opportunities to learn more!
  • Interested in a particular program, such as the African American History Program? Explain in your essay why you're interested in learning more about their particular work and program!
  • Interested in learning how to produce public programs? Be sure to include informal skills in your resume, too, such as your own personal programming experience, such as fundraisers, festivals, learning events, and more, as well as any formal programming experience you may have. 
  • Make sure that your learning goals essay includes some sort of focus--in historical topic or theme, particular museums skills, or collections--so that the Interns & Fellows Program Manager can make sure your application is sent to the best possible mentor match!

Operations: Building Renovation and Exhibition Services

The mission of the Operations: Building Renovation and Exhibition Services (OBRES) team is to manage the design and construction of one of the largest and most complex public space construction and renovation projects at the Smithsonian Institution, as well as to provide exemplary exhibition design, fabrication, and maintenance services for the National Museum of American History.

The vision of the office is to lead and manage a diverse group of professionals and technicians in executing plans, designs, and construction for the transformation of the museum’s visual and cultural endeavors. The office also supports the museum’s public spaces and exhibition renovations, which will tell the overarching American story to our visitors and meet the museum’s needs for the 21st century.

The Office of Building Renovation and Exhibition Services is made up of four teams:

Interested in submitting an OBRES application?

In your learning goals essay, be sure to specify which specific division(s) within the larger Office of Building Renovation and Exhibition Services you would like to intern with! Here are some tips for your application:

  • Some of our OBRES teams, such as the Design team, may already be recruiting for an internship; check out upcoming NMAH internship opportunities to learn more!
  • You are encouraged to include informal and formal skills in your resume and cover letter, if appropriate. For example, if you don't have project management experience, you can explain in your essay about your experience in managing projects for school or for fun!
  • Make sure that your learning goals essay includes some sort of focus--in historical topic or theme, particular museums skills, or collections--so that the Interns & Fellows Program Manager can make sure your application is sent to the best possible mentor match!

Operations: Management and Museum Services (OMMS)

The Operations: Management and Museum Services (OMMS) team is responsible for a range of museum-wide management and operations, support, and services functions. These include personnel, budget and finance, technology, facilities planning and operation, visitor services, photographic services, and the business program.

The Office of Management and Museum Services includes:

Interested in submitting an OMMS application?

In your learning goals essay, be sure to specify which specific division(s) within the larger Office of Management and Museum Services you would like to intern with! Here are some tips for your application:

  • Some of our OMMS teams, such as the Finance Office, may already be recruiting for an internship; check out upcoming NMAH internship opportunities to learn more!
  • Make sure that your learning goals essay includes some sort of focus--in historical topic or theme, particular museums skills, or collections--so that the Interns & Fellows Program Manager can make sure your application is sent to the best possible mentor match!

Office of External Affairs (OEA) *Closed for 2022

The Office of External Affairs oversees our Capital Campaign and all museum fundraising activities, including special events. OEA is the liaison with the Museum's Board.

The Office of External Affairs is made up of two teams:

The Development team works with individual, corporate and foundation donors to raise private funds for museum priorities, including capital needs, exhibition support and educational program fundraising. The Special Events team host interns every internship season, and their internship posting can be found here.

Interested in submitting an OEA application?

In your learning goals essay, be sure to specify that you are applying for an internship within the Development team! Here are some tips for your application:

  • You are encouraged to include informal and formal skills in your resume and cover letter, if appropriate. For example, if you don't have professional development experience, you can explain in your essay about your experience in fundraising and/or donor relations for school, for community support, or for fun!
  • Make sure that your learning goals essay includes clear topics and skills that you hope to learn and develop during your internship so that the Interns & Fellows Program Manager can make sure your application is sent to the best possible mentor match!

You may have noticed that this list is missing a couple of our offices at the museum: the Office of the Director and the Office of External Affairs . 

The Office of the Director is responsible for overall leadership and management of the museum including planning, research, collecting, education, exhibitions, fundraising, business activities, and facilities renovation. If you're interested in learning more about museum operations and management through an internship, it is recommended that you submit a general application with the Operations: Management and Museum Services team. 

The Office of External Affairs already includes also includes specific internship opportunities, so there is no general application pool for their team. Check out upcoming internship opportunities; they recruit every internship season!