Upcoming Internship Opportunities

Summer 2020 internship opportunities are now open for recruitment and are due February 3, 2020 at 2:00 PM EST. Please allow enough time for references to be submitted!

Before you begin applying, be sure to visit our "How to Apply" webpage so that your application is set up for success.

If you don't see an internship that sparks your interest, check out our General Application Pools for NMAH internships.


The museum offers incredible internship experiences in a variety of fields. These opportunities may change each internship season based on the availability of projects in order to ensure meaningful education experiences for all interns.
Unless otherwise stated in a specific internship posting, community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply. We are currently not recruiting for high school interns.

Here are the Summer 2020 internships for which we are actively recruiting:

African American Social Justice History Internship

Archives Center Internship

Audiovisual Archives Internship

Communications, Marketing, & Public Affairs Internship

Daily Programs Internship

Development, Fundraising, and Donor Relations Internship

Editorial Services Internship

Education Internship, History of Philanthropy

Education and Impact Internship

Entertainment Collection Curatorial Internship

Exhibit Services Group Internship

Exhibition Design Internship

Finance & Procurement Internship

Graphic Design Internship

Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) Council Internship

Paper Conservation Lab Internship

Program in Latino History and Civic Engagement Internship

Spark!Lab Internship for Museum Education & Program Evaluation

Special Events Internship

Website Design & Management Internship

 

Questions about applying? Check out the How to Apply section of our NMAH internship website!


African American Social Justice History Internship

This is internship focuses on African American collections is in the Division of Political & Military History. The intern’s work will contribute to major projects focused on managing current collections and building future collections in this field area. An intern will work directly with curators to: 1) critically assess, document, and categorize African American Political History collections and develop a new collecting plan for African American Social Justice history 2) expand collections through archival research and community collecting 3) assist with major grant writing. Interest in the history of race and racism, anti-colonial approaches to museums studies, and critical race and digital studies are encouraged. Advanced undergraduates and graduate students preferred.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to expose the intern to curatorial practice, collections management strategies, and African American holdings at NMAH.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Comfortably navigate the Mimsy-XG software through direct exposure to NMAH’s vast holdings and approaches to collections management.
  • Assist in developing a collecting plan for African American social justice history.
  • Gain a deeper understanding of research focused projects in African American political history under the guidance of their mentors.
  • Increase knowledge of anti-colonial approaches to museums and critical race and digital studies with their mentors.
  • Assist in writing for large scale grants.
  • Hone their research and professional skills.

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Receive training in Mimsy-XG software.
  • Help handle and appropriately classify objects in NMAH’s holdings and learn approaches to collections management.
  • Conduct advanced research on current collections and future collecting opportunities.
  • Assist in identifying and writing large scale grants.

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Interested in marginalized histories, social justice, collections management and/or cultural studies
  • The ability to work well in teams, balance multiple projects, and employ strong research skills
  • Advanced undergraduates and graduate studies (preferred)

Audience: This internship is specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 2-3 interns. Advanced undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. The anticipated length of this internship is 12 weeks to 1 year. This internship can be full time or part time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Archives Center Internship

During this internship, the intern’s primary duty will be to assist Archives Center reference staff in varied aspects of reference service, including: answering public inquiries by telephone, e-mail, and in person, performing background research as needed; taking charge of the reference room during brief absences of the regular staff, assisting researchers as needed, and assisting staff in paging and re-shelving collection materials.

Other duties as assigned may include scanning archival materials and assisting the Archives Center staff with archival processing. Intern(s) will perform collection processing and/or cataloging activities in collaboration with the Archives Center’s processing coordinator. Tasks include performing research in order to write introductory texts for finding aids, arranging and re-housing collection materials, and describing materials for finding aids. The intern will receive instruction in processing techniques, archival description, the use of ArchivesSpace for electronic cataloging, and collection care, and will gain experience in conducting varied types of research. Training provided. Attention to detail required.

There are no specific courses at this point that are needed, but interested applicants may want to consider volunteering in their college/university archives or local historical society to gain some exposure to the archival profession. There are many facets of archival work that include: building custom enclosures such as boxes and sink mats; processing collections (arranging and describing); digitizing photographs and other documents and managing digital assets; assisting researchers in our public reading room; creating EAD finding aids using ArchivesSpace; researching, designing, and preparing small exhibits. Digital asset interns at NMAH's Archives Center are trained to work with a variety of systems such as ArchivesSpace (collections management system) and Opentext (digital asset management system). Working knowledge of excel spreadsheets is useful, but training is provided for all aspects of an interns project.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to teach interns the skills required in varied aspects of reference service and to learn from Archives Center reference staff.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will:

  • Better understand how to analyze a reference inquiry
  • Better understand how to locate information using a variety of systems
  • Better interact with people and provide the excellent customer service
  • Learn how the Archives Center describes, arranges and catalogs archival collections.
  • Enhance my understanding of collection management tools such as ArchivesSpace.
  • Assist in the digitization and cataloging of collection materials.

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Work collaboratively and independently
  • Follow detailed instructions
  • Be flexible 
  • Answer public inquiries by telephone, e-mail, and in person
  • Perform background research as needed
  • Take charge of the reference room during brief absences of the regular staff, assisting researchers as needed, and assisting staff in paging and re-shelving collection materials

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Attention to detail
  • Interest in working with researchers
  • Willingness to learn multiple collections management systems

Audience: This internship is generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for up to 5 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Audiovisual Archives Internship

The Archives Center Film Processing and Digitization Project seeks to arrange, describe, and preserve the Center’s deteriorating film holdings in the face of environmental instability and format degradation. The Archives Center holds 4958 motion picture films in its collections, the majority of which are unprocessed, undigitized, and inaccessible to researchers. In 2016, Smithsonian Institution Archives partnered with the Smithsonian audiovisual archives interest group to produce an extensive survey of audiovisual collections across the Smithsonian. The resulting Pan-Institutional Survey of Audiovisual Collections helped the Archives Center identify how many films are in its holdings, alongside relevant data about film format, estimated footage, and number of reels per motion picture. The survey lacks, however, crucial information central to identifying and tracking the films, such as updated shelf location, Archives Center collection name/number, and item-level description. Building on the foundation set forth by the Pan-Institutional Survey of Audiovisual Collections, the Archives Center seeks an intern to survey the films in our holdings and identify the following: collection the film belongs to, whether the collection has been processed, physical condition of the film, and any preliminary data garnered from the container/housing. This is an essential first step in our process to extend intellectual control over the film assets in our holdings. In the future, the Archives Center will arrange and describe all unprocessed films and outsource the digitization of high-priority films to an external vendor.

Goal: Overall, this internship is a professional learning experience that aims to provide hands-on experience identifying, handling, and inventorying motion picture film; insight into real-world challenges impacting the stewardship and preservation of audiovisual archival collections; and experience working in a professional archival setting.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will:

  • Develop a better understanding of the challenges inherent to collecting, maintaining, and preserving motion picture film.
  • Identify and assess physical condition for 4958 35mm, 16mm, and 8mm film reels.
  • Handle motion picture film according to professional best practices.
  • Complete a survey of film in the Archives Center’s storage rooms to aid in future arrangement, description, and digitization of film assets.

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Conduct a survey of motion picture film in the Archives Center’s storage rooms, recording shelf location, container details, physical condition, and other contextual information for each reel.
  • Handle motion picture film throughout its life cycle.

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Must be currently enrolled in or recently graduated from a graduate program in Film Studies; Moving Image Archiving and Preservation; or Archives and Records Management with a focus on audiovisual preservation.
  • Knowledge of film formats, handling practices, and preservation issues encouraged, but not required.
  • Demonstrated experience using ArchivesSpace to create, edit, or review archival finding aids.
  • Strong organizational skills and attention to detail.
  • Ability to work independently

Audience: This internship is specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1 intern. Current and recent graduate students from a graduate program in Film Studies; Moving Image Archiving and Preservation; or Archives and Records Management with a focus on audiovisual preservation are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will take place during Summer 2020. This internship is expected to be full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity has a guaranteed stipend of $7,000. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Communications and Marketing/Public Affairs Internship

The National Museum of American History Office of Communications and Marketing ensures that museum maintains a positive relationship with the community and members of the press. Daily activities include responding to all incoming media queries; develops strategies for effective proactive information about museum activities; coordinates documentary film crews, approves outside media releases by agencies/donors, approves advertisements promoting exhibitions and public programs and handles any crisis issues. Among the events that communications and marketing stages are press previews, press conferences, exhibition dedication ceremonies, donation ceremonies (usually involving objects and sometimes celebrity donors) and press luncheons. Coming up we will be preparing for donations, exhibition openings, and doing a lot of filming at the museum. We are a small office with four full time employees and so we rely heavily on interns who generally have projects of their own to promote start to finish. For example, if a notable musician is willing to donate something to the museum, an intern might be asked to research and create a background on the musician and object being donated, speak with curators at the museum, work with the special events office on the donation ceremony schedule, and caption the pictures taken at the event. In addition, interns assist the office with daily operations: researching and responding to media and public inquiries, compiling media clips, researching and writing calendar submissions, media advisories and releases and some other things that come up. Our office relies on interns to assist with daily operations like: researching and responding to media and public queries, compiling media clips, writing media advisories and press releases, and researching and writing calendar submissions. Interns are given the opportunity to come up with ideas on how the Museum can continue to remain one of the most visited museums in the world. The office also facilitates all interviews with the director and curators and is responsible for coordinating and scheduling all media, documentary and commercial film crews. An internship in the Office of Communications and Marketing is not only a great opportunity for anyone with an interest in those areas, but also those interested in event planning, public affairs, and museum studies. During the internship you will learn how to write and cite according to AP stylebook, how to draft and create media advisories, press releases and event show flows, and how to effectively communicate with the public and media. Your writing will become concise as you raise awareness for museum exhibitions and events. Due to the nature of the work, interns will explore much of the museum as they research for media releases and advisories. Working in our office rewards interns with professional skills in a friendly environment that promotes creative ideas and fosters professional growth.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to propose creative ideas and contribute to the Office of Communications and Marketing. The intern will gain insight into the inner workings and aspects of the Office of Communications and Marketing in the National Museum of American History. When the internship is completed, the intern will have and understanding about the field of public relations and ideally be prepared for to seek a position in the communications field.   Interns will develop verbal, written, and professional skills and understand what makes compelling news.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will:

  • Gain experience working in an active communications and marketing office and learn how to promote the Smithsonian and its work to the public and media
  • Improve writing skills through a variety of communication mediums (press materials, marketing materials and web content)
  • Learn what makes a story news worthy and how to tailor stories to relevant news outlets

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Research and respond to media and public inquiries
  • Compile media clips
  • Draft and edit media advisories and press releases
  • Research and write calendar submissions
  • Attend special events
  • Draft statements
  • Oversee film and news crews

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Enthusiastic about communications and marketing with excellent research and writing skills
  • Professional demeanor, organizational and communication skills
  • Ability to work independently and complete assigned tasks within identified timeframes

Audience: This internship is generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Daily Programs Internship

Daily Programs Interns learn the methods and practice of museum education by facilitating hands-on activities throughout the museum. Interns will learn a wide range of approaches to planning, delivering, and evaluating daily, public programs for visitors. Current programming uses topics in innovation, agricultural, business, food, household, and social history connected to museum exhibitions to engage our all-ages audience. Interns will collaborate with the Experience Design team (Office of Audience Engagement), dedicated to facilitating meaningful personal experiences, building relationships, and creating conversations with museum visitors. Please note that this internship is full-time and requires one weekend day.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to have interns learn the methods and practice of museum education by facilitating hands-on activities throughout the museum.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Learn museum education principles and develop an introductory understanding of the role of public engagement in museums.
  • Learn a wide range of approaches to delivering and evaluating public programs for museum visitors.
  • Understand how public programs operate in a large museum

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Participate weekly discussion session with assigned readings, exhibit reviews, and presentations by museum staff that will introduce you to museum education theory and current best practices.
  • Bring what you’ve learned to a broad public audience by presenting programs and hands-on interactive experiences throughout the museum.
  • Work cooperatively with staff and intern cohort to present educational programs, engaging audiences through conversation and object-based learning
  • Research and develop additional program content with museum collections and education staff 
  • Assist with the upkeep of program equipment and spaces including set up, replenishing supplies, and operating procedures
  • Conduct evaluation projects and maintain documentation to support program continuity

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Possess enthusiasm for working in a public-facing, educational environment
  • Have strong interpersonal and communication skills
  • Work independently and collaboratively in a team-oriented environment
  • Interest in history, education, or museums

Audience: This internship is generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for more than 5 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship is full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Development, Fundraising, and Donor Relations Internship

The Development Office manages a robust philanthropy program that creates meaningful experiences for members and donors while raising funds to sustain core museum activities including exhibitions, education initiatives, public programs, conservation projects, capital projects, and more. The office is responsible for fundraising by identifying, securing, and stewarding financial support from individuals (trustees, major donors, and members) and institutions (foundations, government agencies, and corporations). The interns report to the Assistant Director of Corporate and Foundation Relations, but will work closely with all development managers to learn different aspects of fundraising and development, while supporting the team in meeting its goals. Interns will learn about membership, major giving and personal philanthropy, assist with gift acknowledgements, special projects, and events, and help advance the process for individual and institutional donors and prospects.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to educate the intern on what it means to work in development for a major museum.  They will learn how we cultivate donors and raise money for various projects.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Prospect research techniques
  • Conduct a mail merge
  • Cultivate donor stewardship

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Prospect identification, such as online research and creating in-depth donor profiles
  • Manage and process mailings for the Smithsonian Council for American History, a membership program for donors of $1,000 - $25,000, and the Director’s Fund for Annual Giving, a program for donor of $50-$500.
  • Assist with donor tours, donor meetings, membership/major gift events, Museum-wide events
  • Create and manage invitation and mailing lists for VIP events
  • Draft fundraising materials, such as proposals, blog posts, e-solicitations, or talking points for donor tours
  • Assist with data processing and mailings

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Interest in development
  • Arts or nonprofit background
  • Experience working in an office

Audience: This internship can be generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field, or specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Editorial Services Internship

With museum labels, educational guides, blog posts, and more, on topics like popular culture, migration, and women’s history (just to name a few), the editorial output of the National Museum of American History is extensive and varied—and so too is the work of the Editorial Services office. Gain skills and practice in structural editing, stylistic editing, copy editing, proofreading, and fact checking, and learn about editorial management at one of the Smithsonian’s largest museums.

Goal: Overall, this internship is a professional learning experience that aims to teach the many editorial skills that are used in working for a Smithsonian museum and offer an intern the opportunity to practice those varied skills with the guidance of an experienced professional editor.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will:

  • Learn the different core editorial skills and additional skills (as defined by Editors Canada), including the tasks associated with practicing each skill and the challenges and benefits of using each skill on projects;
  • Practice the core editorial skills and some of the additional skills on projects in development at NMAH;
  • Learn what NMAH values in creating writing for its audiences and why;
  • Practice shaping NMAH writing to better align it with museum standards and better suit it to its audiences;
  • Receive feedback regularly as assignments are delivered and reviewed;
  • Have opportunity to ask NMAH editor Leslie Poster any and all questions regarding assignments;
  • Participate in regular hourlong meeting each week with NMAH editor Leslie Poster for discussion;  
  • Attend at least one meeting of Smithsonian Editors;
  • Attend at least one training hosted for NMAH staff by NMAH editor Leslie Poster;
  • Attend intra and interdepartmental meetings to see how museum editors coordinate and collaborate with other functional groups within the museum;
  • Receive career counseling and résumé guidance based on current industry hiring needs.

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

Audience: This internship is specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1 intern. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will take place during Summer 2020. This internship is expected to be part time, minimum of 16 hours per week. The typical length of an internship is between 8-12 weeks.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This internship does provide a $2,000 stipend to defray some cost of living during the internship. Additional stipends may be available for interns with additional financial need whose complete applications are submitted on time and who are accepted into the program; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Education Internship, History of Philanthropy

This internship focuses on the diverse museum collections that support the interpretation of the history of philanthropy in the United States.  (Philanthropy refers to the many and varied ways Americans have given time, talent, or treasure.) The intern’s work will contribute to projects focused on creating K-12 educational resources. An intern will work directly with the Philanthropy Initiative’s Project Historian to:  1) critically assess museum collections related to philanthropy; 2) expand public access to the collections through the creation of educational content and resources; 3) create dynamic, online “Learning Labs” content and resources to enable K-12 teachers to use collections in their classrooms. Advanced undergraduates and graduate students preferred.

Goal: Overall, this internship is a professional learning experiences that aims to engage the intern in creating educational content and resources related to the history of philanthropy in the United States.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Use museum objects, images, and texts to interpret the past
  • Create educational resources for K-12 teachers using diverse materials related to the history of philanthropy
  • Produce SI Learning Labs resources, including lesson plans
  • Meaningfully participate in a team-based work environment.

 Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Identify topics in the history of philanthropy that support national K-12 learning objectives
  • In consultation with the project historian, select and interpret primary sources to be included in educational resource materials
  • Compile resources and create lesson plans
  • Develop SI Learning Labs modules

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Interest in museum education
  • Demonstrated course work in U.S. history
  • Knowledge of K-12 education
  • Advanced undergraduates and graduate studies (preferred)

udience: This internship is specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1 intern. Advanced undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will take place during Summer 2020. This internship is expected to be part time, minimum of 16 hours per week.The anticipated length of this internship is 8 weeks. 

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Education and Impact Internship

As an Education and Impact Intern, you will have an opportunity to help local and national students, teachers and families connect to and use history in a meaningful way through the NMAH collections. The internship will introduce you to museum education best practices and provide plenty of opportunities to develop your skills and techniques necessary to work with teachers and PK – 12 students.

Goal: Overall, this internship is a professional learning experiences that aims to provide aspiring museum education professionals with experience in developing lesson plans, online resources, museum programs and field trip experiences as well as examine the power of museums in supporting PK-12 cross-curricular education.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Engage diverse audiences.
  • Implement best practices for museum education.
  • Develop object-based museum experiences, lesson plans, online resources and other materials for teachers, students and families.
  • Identify the processes behind the implementation of programming (brainstorming, budgeting, lesson and logistics planning etc.).
  • Connect teachers, students and families to museum objects in relevant, engaging and educational ways.

 Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Design new interactive elements and educational materials (games, assignments, activities, etc.) for museum educators to incorporate into teacher professional development workshops and direct-to-student programming and resources.
  • Prepare materials to be used in professional development workshops, events, and other programs conducted by the K-12 Education team.
  • Creatively and collaboratively with the K-12 Education team develop concepts for new resources and programs for teachers and students.

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • In the process of obtaining an undergraduate or graduate degree in Museum Studies, Museum Education, Art History, History, Education or another related field.
  • Experiences in formal and informal education settings a plus, but not required.
  • Be able to work both independently and in a collaborative environment.
  • Be open-minded in learning new topics and skills.

Audience: This internship can be generalized, to privde individuals intial experience in this field, or specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1 intern. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will take place every internship season--spring, summer, or fall. This internship is expected to be full-time.The anticipated length of this internship is 8 - 12 weeks. 

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Entertainment Collection Curatorial Internship

The intern will work with museum professionals in the Entertainment Collection at the National Museum of American History, learning how curators study, care for, and use one of the nation’s premiere collections of historical film, television, theater, comedy, and animation objects to interpret the history of the United States and its people. The intern will have opportunities to learn and practice diverse skills including object handling and cataloging, archival and object research, exhibition development, and publication and program development.

Goal: Overall, this internship is a professional learning experiences that aims to engage interns in learning and practicing professional skills required of a museum curator, including object handling and cataloging, research, exhibition development, and public service.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Handle and catalog museum objects to Smithsonian standards
  • Write museum labels supported by rigorous research and an understanding of museum interpretation
  • Communicate well with museum professionals in a variety of settings including meetings

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Learn object handling and cataloging skills
  • Gain competency using MIMSY XG collections management software
  • Improve archival research skills
  • Increase knowledge of subject (history of American entertainment)
  • Experience book and exhibition development meetings

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Demonstrated interest in the history of American entertainment
  • Interest in learning curatorial research and object skills
  • Proficiency in written communication

Audience: This internship can be both generalized, to provide individuals initial experience in this field, and specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1 intern. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. The anticipated length of this internship is 8 - 12 weeks. This internship can be full time or part time, minimum of 16 hours per week.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Exhibit Services Group Internship

Have you ever wondered how a museum’s exhibit can be so engaging and look so professional every day? At NMAH, we are a large museum with a diverse collection in galleries ranging in age from 54 years to less than 1 year and with sizes ranging from 800 to 8,000 square feet. Because of this, we have a unique challenge in presenting our collection to the public on a daily basis. The sheer number of annual visitors requires a more thorough and focused effort on the daily and long term needs of maintenance and collections care of the objects on display. This is why the Exhibits Services Group at NMAH is so important. The Exhibits Services Group is a small, interdisciplinary group that oversees all of the daily requirements needed to make sure our exhibits are creating the best visitor experience while also contributing to special fabrication needs and art handling support for conservation. Although cleaning, painting, and lighting make up the basic task elements of our typical day, project planning and interdepartmental relationship building are the two of the most important responsibilities and skills of the Exhibits Services Group, even though this might not be obvious in our basic job description. With over 350 personnel in one building, there exists a tremendous opportunity to collaborate with every aspect of the museum field, including with our Exhibits Design, Exhibits Production and Graphics, Collections Care, and Conservation teams. The intern will be provided opportunities to become acquainted with and work with several other departments.

Goal: Overall, this internship is a professional learning experiences that aims to introduce the intern not only to Museum Exhibits specifically but the interdisciplinary collaborations within the museum as a whole. This internship is referred to as a “ Museum Primer “ for those interested in entering the Museum profession but perhaps are still unsure what precise field they may want to enter.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will:

  • Gain a better understanding of the exhibition planning and development process through shadowing and participation in team-based collaboration
  • Build interdepartmental relationships through collaborating with other departments in the museum who contribute to the creation and success of an exhibition, including exhibits design, exhibits production, conservation, and collections care teams
  • Contribute to exhibit maintenance through prioritizing specific tasks related to visitor experience
  • Understand the vital role that museum exhibitions plays in promoting the educational priorities of the museum

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Assist with daily gallery maintenance of the third floor and other galleries as needed. This includes vacuuming and glass cleaning as well as painting and lighting.
  • Assist with Project Planning, supply organization, inter-department communications and collaborations.
  • Assist with exhibit component repair.
  • Assist with design of displays and interactives.
  • Assist with “Casting and Molding” in sculptural aspects of displays.

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Applicant does not need prior exhibits experience
  • Applicant does not need prior fabrication experience
  • Applicant may be High School, Undergraduate or Post-Graduate.
  • Applicant should have some basic knowledge of organizational skills

Audience: This internship is generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1 intern. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time, minimum of 16 hours per week. The typical length of an internship is between 8-12 weeks.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This internship does provide a $2,000 stipend to defray some cost of living during the internship. Additional stipends may be available for interns with additional financial need whose complete applications are submitted on time and who are accepted into the program; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Exhibition Design Internship

Do you have a desire to gain experience with visual and experiential storytelling through museum exhibitions? The NMAH Exhibition Design Internship will provide you with real-world experience in the development and design of object-based, interpretive exhibitions. Develop your 3-D and graphic design skills, practice your design critique and presentation skills, work directly with professional exhibition designers, and expand your portfolio of design projects through museum exhibitions. If you have questions or would like to learn more about the internship, feel free to contact Nigel Briggs, NMAH designer and internship coordinator for the design studio. 

**Please note: as part of your SOLAA application to this position, please provide either a link or a PDF to your portfolio!**

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to provide student with real-world experience in the Exhibition Development and Design the museum context.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Understand the exhibition development and design process for interpretive, object-based exhibitions.
  • Use Vectorworks for exhibition concept design and detailing
  • Create and present verbal and visual exhibition design concept presentations
  • Prepare exhibition design production packages

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Use Vectorworks for Exhibition Design modeling and detailing
  • Use Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign for exhibition graphic design
  • Participate in weekly creative critiques about exhibition design
  • Attend exhibition project meetings and present exhibition design concepts

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Experience with Vectorworks and other 3-D CAD software
  • Experience with Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign
  • A desire to gain experience with visual and experiential storytelling through museum exhibitions

Audience: This internship can be both generalized, to provide individuals initial experience in this field, and specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 3-4 interns. Past interns have had some background in the following fields: industrial design, theater, merchandising, architecture, interior design, exhibition design, and/or museum studies. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This internship does provide a $2,000 stipend to defray some cost of living during the internship. Additional stipends may be available for interns with additional financial need whose complete applications are submitted on time and who are accepted into the program; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Finance & Procurement Internship

The Finance & Procurement Internship at NMAH is a professional learning experience for anyone interested in learning more about the skills needed in the finance and procurement field, especially in a museum setting. The internship will be mentored by staff within the Financial Office, which provides advice and assistance to the management and staff of the Museum, monitors and controls expenditures of funds, prepares annual budgets, and conducts reviews and analysis to ensure that Smithsonian and Museum financial policy is implemented properly.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to help to develop financial and procurement management skills.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Develop budget and financial obligation and expense charts
  • Closeout purchase orders and contracts that have zero balances and those with remaining funds to be de-obligated
  • Collaborate and communicate with other units to implement new procedures for the procurement and finance office, a business communications liaison between the United States government and a private contractor and other outside sources

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Analyze reports and communicate results and reports
  • Review invoices and identify discrepancies to resolve and take corrective actions
  • Interact and communicate professionally with museum staff

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Interest in problem solving and creating innovative solutions to organizational challenges
  • Attention to detail
  • Some experience in an office setting, preferred

Audience: This internship generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will last for twelve weeks and can be full-time or part-time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Graphic Design Internship

Do you have a desire to gain experience with graphic design for museum applications such as wayfinding, environmental graphics, and exhibition graphics?  The NMAH Graphic Design Internship will provide you with real-world experience in the application of graphic design within the museum environment. Develop graphic design skills, practice your design critique and presentation skills, work directly with professional exhibition designers, and expand your portfolio of design projects through museum exhibitions. If you have questions or would like to learn more about the internship, feel free to contact Nigel Briggs, NMAH designer and internship coordinator for the design studio. 

**Please note: as part of your SOLAA application to this position, please provide either a link or a PDF to your portfolio!**

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to provide students with real-world experience in the graphic design in the museum context.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Understand Graphic Design for Environmental Graphics inside and outside of the museum building
  • Understand implementation of a museum-wide graphic identity
  • Understand graphic design for wayfinding and building signage
  • Understand the use of typography and graphic design for museum exhibitions
  • Prepare graphic design production packages

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Work with existing Graphic Identity Style Guide to produce museum wayfinding and building signage
  • Work with exhibitions project teams to develop exhibition graphics such as labels, environmental graphics and exhibition-specific graphic identities
  • Attend exhibition project meetings and present exhibition design concepts

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Experience with Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign
  • A desire to gain experience with visual and experiential storytelling through museum exhibitions

Audience: This internship can be both generalized, to provide individuals initial experience in this field, and specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 3-4 interns. Past interns have had some background in the following fields: graphic design, visual communication, and/or museum studies. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This internship does provide a $2,000 stipend to defray some cost of living during the internship. Additional stipends may be available for interns with additional financial need whose complete applications are submitted on time and who are accepted into the program; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) Council Internship

The Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) Council Internship will provide interns skills and knowledge about issues of inclusion and diversity in a museum setting. It provides an opportunity to learn about the function of a council in a major museum, strategies for inclusion, and how to archive and organize the work of the council.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to provide an opportunity for an intern to learn about cultural institution practices and contribute to the IDEA Council at NMAH.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Research and discuss diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives in cultural institutions around the US
  • Draft and pitch museum policy proposals regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Apply cultural institution practices in their future career

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Schedule and attend meetings, take notes and compile information
  • Identify and write short announcements for the Museum intranet
  • Organize and keep archives of the council

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Interested in diversity, equity, and inclusions in cultural institutions
  • Some background with research
  • Good organizational skills

Audience: This internship is be generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will take place in Summer 2020. This internship can be part time or full-time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This internship does provide a $6,000 stipend to defray some cost of living during the internship. Additional stipends may be available for interns with additional financial need whose complete applications are submitted on time and who are accepted into the program; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Paper Conservation Lab Internship

This internship will involve learning about and practicing the conservation, preservation, storage and exhibition of paper-based artifacts such as documents, art on paper and historic books.

Goal: Overall, this internship is a professional learning experience that aims to engage an intern in the practice of conservation, preservation, storage and exhibition of paper-based artifacts such as documents, art on paper and historic books. 

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Survey paper-based objects going on exhibition or loan to assess their condition and determine treatment needs.
  • Clean, stabilize and repair of artifacts in preparation for exhibition and loan.
  • Support the day-to-day operations of the Paper Conservation Lab.

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Survey paper-based objects to assess their condition and determine treatment needs.
  • Clean, stabilize and repair of artifacts.
  • Participate in the day-to-day operations of the Paper Conservation Lab.

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Demonstrated fine motor skills (sewing, drawing, etc.)
  • Some basic object-handling experience

Audience: This internship can be both generalized, to provide individuals initial experience in this field, and specialized, for individuals who have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will take place during Summer 2020. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Program in Latino History and Civic Engagement Internship

During this internship, interns will learn through participating in multiple projects about Latino history and civic engagement, maximizing the opportunity to acquire new skills and make a greater contribution. One project is the “Interactive Cart on Latino Immigration,” through which interns will facilitate conversations with the public about the objects in the carts, make connection to the visitors own family immigration experiences and facilitate learning about the rich diversity of immigrant communities. Another project is the Civic Engagement project, through which interns will assist in producing proposals to support naturalization ceremonies, citizenship seminars, and create new teaching resources for new citizens as well as plan and produce voter registration drives in the museum and compile voter registration resources. Interns will be under the supervision of Magdalena Mieri in the Office of Audience Engagement at the National Museum of American History. 

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to teach interns how to increase awareness of Latino history and improve citizenship participation.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will:

  • Learn how a museum operates, including its many functions.
  • Learn how to do research using museum collections
  • Further critical thinking skills

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Learn and facilitate the museum’s “Interactive Cart on Latino Immigration,” which involves interacting and connecting with the public
  • Produce proposals to support civic engagement
  • Behave professionally
  • Communicate clearly and participate in meetings
  • Produce good work

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Bilingual skills English/Spanish
  • Pursuing or received a BA or BS in history, cultural anthropology, Spanish, English
  • Self-motivated

Audience: This internship is generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Spark!Lab Internship for Museum Education & Program Evaluation

The Draper Spark!Lab is an interactive space for kids (and adults) to explore the process of invention! Spark!Lab is part of the Smithsonian's Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation at the National Museum of American History (NMAH). Interns in the Spark!Lab will learn the methods and practice of museum education by facilitating inquiry-based activities in Spark!Lab. Interns will also learn a wide range of approaches to developing and evaluating programs for museum visitors. Interns will be integral to the Spark!Lab team and will learn alongside staff and volunteer docents. Through their learning experiences, Spark!Lab interns will build relationships with thousands of visitors and spark conversation in order to engage them in the invention process. 

Interns will also have the opportunity to visit and learn about other education spaces across the Smithsonian, will be invited to participated in Lemelson Center team meetings, public programs, and other events, and will hae opportunities to engage with fellow interns and staff of the Office of Audience Engagement and the National Museum of American History.

Applicants of all academic backgrounds are welcome to apply.

Goal: Overall, during this internship, the Spark!Lab Interns will learn under the guidance of the Lemelson Center’s Museum Program Specialist to assess and enhance the visitor experience in Spark!Lab and develop inquiry based facilitation best practices for informal learning spaces.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will:

  • Learn the methods and practice of museum education by applying inquiry-based interpersonal facilitation strategies to hands-on invention activities in Spark!Lab and practice collaborative, social learning
  • Learn first-hand how hands-on activity space operate in a large museum and develop the behind-the-scenes expertise needed to create programs for museum visitors
  • Learn to assess and evaluate activities and to identify waysto improve the overall Spark!Lab experience

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Facilitate hands-on invention activities and experiences with visitors on the museum floor, particularly with children ages 6-12 and their families
  • Help staff implement new techniques, tips, and strategies (as mentioned above) by testing them on the floor and actively facilitating visitor experiences
  • Record reflective feedback and critique the "pilot methods" of activities, tweaking them and changing them to find efficient and effective methods
  • Develop an individual Spark!Lab project, which could include drafting ideas and strategies to improve volunteer engagement, researching and developing a new hands-on activity, creating an activity facilitation guide, developing and conducting an evaluation on an existing activity, or developing a special program to take place in Spark!Lab

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Experience working with the public or in customer service/visitor services
  • Passion to education and inspiring learning in others
  • Enthusiasm for working in a public-facing, education environment

Audience: This internship is generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time.

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This internship does provide a $500 stipend to offset transportation costs. Additional stipends may be available for interns with additional financial need whose complete applications are submitted on time and who are accepted into the program; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Special Events Internship

The Office of Special Events plans and coordinates over 100 events each year including: exhibition openings, press conferences, donation ceremonies, staff receptions, donor cultivation events, and corporate dinners and receptions. Additionally, the museum is able to host social events including weddings, mitzvahs, birthdays, etc. The office is characterized by a busy but proactive environment that strives to forward the goals of the Smithsonian Institution by connecting with the community and public at large. We offer an unparalleled opportunity for students/individuals interested in event planning and coordinating to delve into the museum environment and gain hands-on skills from a highly esteemed workplace. Our interns are given a great deal of responsibility and permitted the chance to develop their writing skills, interact with museum officials, work with caterers and vendors, and staff numerous special events. As an intern, you will be exposed to the nuances of protocol and frequently accompany staff members for on-site visits with potential donors and walk-throughs with clients and vendors.

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to assist students in developing the skills necessary to plan and execute events.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Summarize the necessary steps to execute an event at NMAH
  • Produce documentation and memoranda for events
  • Develop problem solving and time management skills

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Assist in the coordination and execution of receptions, dinners, conferences, donation ceremonies, and other special events at the Museum
  • Manage the museum-wide special events and conference room calendar
  • Interact and communicate with museum staff, vendors, event attendees, and members of the public

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:  

  • Junior, Senior, or Graduate Student
  • Communication skills, both oral and written
  • Availability to work events including nights and some weekends

Audience: This internship can both be generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field and specialized for individuals who already have experience in this field. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship takes place during every internship cycle--spring, summer, or fall. This internship can be part time or full time. 

Eligible for Academic Credit: Yes! Interns may receive program or course credit for this experience if approved by their educational institution. Though NMAH does not itself award credit, the Interns and Fellows Office will help coordinate the requirements for credit with the educational institution.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This internship does provide a stipend of $325 per week in additional to a $500 stipend to offset transportation costs. Additional stipends may be available for interns with additional financial need whose complete applications are submitted on time and who are accepted into the program; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Website Design & Management Internship

This intern will have a key role in working with Digital Experience staff to create and maintain informational pages on the museum's website, develop online exhibitions and other microsites, assist with measurement and evaluation, and other tasks. This is an excellent opportunity for students to enhance skills in web design and digital outreach within the context of museums, education, and world-class history. 

Goal: Overall, this internship aims to provide experience with the Digital Experience team to create and maintain content on the NMAH website.

Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:

  • Learn how website content supports the Museum mission and partners with other aspects of public education and outreach
  • Increase competency in website design, accessibility, and user experience practices
  • Produce user-centered web products that meet the high quality standards of the Smithsonian Institution

Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:

  • Attend team meetings and learn how to implement website projects at various project stages
  • Build and edit website pages
  • Review website content for accuracy in collaboration with museum staff

Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:

  • Basic proficiency in Drupal, Wordpress, or other content management system
  • Knowledge of HTML/CSS and/or other web design experience
  • Good writing and editing skills, with attention to detail

Audience: This internship specialized for individuals who already have experience in this field, specifically a baseline proficiency in the tools of web design. This internship is intended for 1-2 interns. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply.

Timeline: This internship will take place during Summer 2020 and can be full-time or part-time.

Optional Enrichment Opportunities: Interns are invited to participate in optional opportunities during the internship that support professional growth and foster understanding about the museum field.

Financial Information: This opportunity does not guarantee a stipend. However, selected interns will have the opportunity to apply for a stipend based on financial need; the amount of internship stipends depends on the amount of museum funds available and is at the discretion of NMAH. Internship stipends issued by the Smithsonian are not considered salary or meant as compensation, but are awarded to help defray living expenses for an intern during the term of their appointment. If an intern is awarded a stipend, stipends cannot be distributed before the start of an internship, and we typically recommend that an intern has at least enough external funding to cover the first month's expenses to accommodate the wait time required in stipend processing. To learn more, please check out our Internship FAQ page.


Didn’t find what you’re looking for? You can check out the General Application Pools for NMAH internships!

Additionally, if you’re interested in internship opportunities at other museums and research centers at the Smithsonian, please visit the Smithsonian’s Office of Fellowships and Internships.​​​​​​​