Summer Internship for Undergraduates

National Museum of African Art
Washington D.C.
Closing date
Feb 13, 2022

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Position Type
Full Time
Organization Type

Summer Internship for Undergraduates at the National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art (NMAfA), the only U.S. Museum dedicated exclusively to the exhibition and preservation of Africa’s traditional and contemporary arts, is pleased to announce a paid summer internship in the conservation department.  A conservator’s work is focused on the preservation of collections and this may include documentation, treatment and research.  Conservators have academic backgrounds in the arts, sciences or social sciences and attain a profession graduate degree in conservation.  For more information about the field see:

Funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, this internship is open to students who have completed at least one year of college, who have a strong interest in science, art, art history, history, anthropology or archaeology and who have at least a 3.0 gpa.  Interns will be given an introduction to the field of art conservation, learn about documentation, preventive care and exhibits conservation. Assignments may include: environmental monitoring, writing reports, photographic documentation, housing objects for storage, lab organizational tasks, and participating in research projects. In addition, the intern will learn about and participate in the Museum’s efforts in decolonization.

As part of an initiative designed to promote diversity in the profession and conservation training, the ten-week internship will commence on June 6, 2022 and offers a $6,600 stipend plus additional funds to help defray the cost of travel to Washington DC. The internship is open only to US citizens and permanent residents.  (Please note: this internship is intended as an introduction to conservation for students who have no previous experience in a conservation lab).

Deadline for application:  March 1, 2022

For further information contact:  Dana Moffett, Senior Conservator

Application Procedure:  Applicants must register and submit an online application via the Smithsonian Online Academic Appointment system (SOLAA) . After registering, sign onto the SOLAA system.  At the top of the screen, select “Start your Application”; Select “Internship” and “National Museum of African Art” from the drop-down program lists.   All materials should be submitted through the SOLAA system. 

Application requirements via SOLAA

-Short essay (no more than three pages total)

  1) A statement of your interest in an internship at the NMAfA and what you hope to gain from the experience; please state how you found out about the internship.

  2) Please discuss the impact that a funded internship would have on you and your education.

  3) Provide a short biography describing your background, personal history, interests and major/minor (if declared).

-Curriculum Vitae or Resume

-Undergraduate transcripts (unofficial)

-Two letters of reference

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