http://americanhistory.si.edu

Smithsonian's National Museum of American History

Virtual Special Events Intern

May - August 2020 • Washington, DC

What I liked

I liked being able to connect with museum professionals from various departments, not just the one I interned for.

What I wish was different

Ultimately, I wish there were actually events happening. There weren't because of the pandemic.

Advice

Definitely take advantage of the resources available to you as an SI employee - you can talk with so many different people, access so many different libraries, attend lectures and planning meetings. They are a very engaging place to intern.
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Education and Impact Intern

June - August 2020 • Washington, DC

What I liked

Phenomenally supported intern program, the Smithsonian NMAH really puts a lot of consideration and intention into the way it structures its internships. They really prioritize intern learning and having tangible results from your experience.

What I wish was different

Advice

Definitely take advantage of all of the extra programming that the internship office puts on, it's so helpful and it's a great way to meet other interns!
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Curatorial Assistant Intern

June - August 2019 • Washington, DC

What I liked

Meeting professionals across the Smithsonian Institution.

What I wish was different

Working closer within my department.

Advice

Come in with an open mind and be confident when speaking across a panel.
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Costume Conservation Intern

June 2017 - August 2018 • Washington, DC

What I liked

My supervisor in the Textile Lab was very hands-on and attentive to us interns, and engaged us in everything she was working on. She also gave us projects that were directly related to conservation work, allowing me to get a real feel for what the job entailed. The Smithsonian organization is very helpful in terms of answering intern questions and finding resources, and there were lots of benefits to working for the Smithsonian, such as intern tours of the museums.

What I wish was different

The internship exceeded my expectation, and I was very pleased with it just the way it was- there really isn't anything I would have changed about my experience.

Advice

D.C. can be a difficult area to find affordable housing for the summer if you aren't from the area. Check with colleges and universities from the area and see if you can rent out a dorm from them as many offer summer housing for interns. It helped make the move-in process smoother for me and was much cheaper tan a normal apartment in D.C. would have been.
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Intern

June - August 2018 • Washington, DC

What I liked

It was a fun and engaging work environment. The curators and collection manager I worked with were amazing people who were helpful and friendly. I was able to experience a lot of museum work hands on, which is exactly what I had hoped for. It was a perfect taste of my dream job.

What I wish was different

The commute was a little long, but that was the only issue.

Advice

Ask questions. Don't be afraid to ask for advice on career moves and what steps you should take in your education to get where they are now. Ask them questions about their research, the projects they're working on, and the artifacts they've collected. You will so much more that way than if you just do the tasks assigned and keep your head down.
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Daily Programs Intern

June - August 2018 • Washington, DC

What I liked

It was really neat to go to work everyday at one of the nation's largest and most famous museums.

What I wish was different

I wish there had been more research and training in other areas of the museum (besides daily programs).

Advice

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