List of Internships

SUMMER 2024 INTERNSHIPS 

Instructions for applying here

Check out the summer interns' Instagram (@public_history_uva) to see how interns spend their summers.

Questions? Email IPH Director Lisa Goff at lg6t@virginia.edu.

INTERNSHIPS

Charlottesville, Virginia 
Four TENTATIVE internships between three projects.
1. Researcher and writer, Pen Park Cemetery Project 
Terms: The Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society (ACHS) is seeking one advanced undergraduate student with strong research and writing skills, a background in American history, and familiarity with genealogical research and the local history of Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville. Previous experience with oral history research a plus. Workspace will be provided in our Downtown Charlottesville office, and the intern will have the ability to work remotely if needed. This internship pays $15/hour for 300 hours of work over the summer.
Goals: The ACHS is partnering with the City of Charlottesville to research, locate, and collaborate with the descendants of enslaved individuals who were buried in unmarked graves at the Pen Park cemetery, with the goal of determining the most appropriate ways to commemorate and memorialize this solemn ground. Charlottesville City Council approved a resolution on December 2, 2019, authorizing the use of funds for the archaeological evaluation of possible unmarked graves outside the enclosed family plots at the Gilmer/Craven/Hotopp Cemetery at Pen Park, which date from the late 1700s through the 1800s. Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) evaluation of the site shows the presence of 43 unmarked and unrecorded graves outside the walls of the three family plots. The evidence so far suggests that these unmarked graves are those of individuals enslaved on the site of Pen Park. Our summer interns will review existing research and archival sources, conduct new research, complete reports on specific individuals and families, and participate in oral history interviews with members of the descendant community. They will work directly with ACHS staff, contractors, and volunteers, and in close collaboration with others involved in the project, including Jeff Werner, City of Charlottesville Historic Preservation Planner; Shelley Murphy, UVA Enslaved Laborers Project Lead Researcher; Sam Towler, Local Historian and Central Virginia History Researchers member; and Lorenzo Dickerson, Maupintown Media Filmmaker and Local History Storyteller.
Outcomes: With guidance from ACHS staff, the interns will become familiar with cvillepedia.org and will write and edit wiki pages and articles for the Pen Park Cemetery Project. At the end of the internship, the interns will have added page articles to the site, and understand the processes involved with researching and writing for a local history wiki. The interns will have the opportunity to present on their work in a hybrid online/in-person public program hosted by the ACHS during the internship.
 
2. Educational Coordinator, Desegregation Oral History-K-12 Project
Terms: The Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society (ACHS) is seeking one advanced undergraduate student, preferably in an educational field, with a background in American history, and familiarity with the local history of Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville. Previous experience with oral history research a plus. Workspace will be provided in our downtown Charlottesville office, and the intern will have the ability to work remotely if needed. This internship pays $15/hour for 300 hours of work over the summer.
Goals: The ACHS is engaged in a multi-year oral history project to collect, preserve, and share the recollections of individuals, many of them former student athletes, who experienced the desegregation of local public high schools (1954-1974). Video recorded oral history interviews are being made publicly available via our soon-to-be online website: “No Playbook: School Integration During Massive Resistance.” The structure of this internship will be hybrid. Some tasks will allow for remote work, but in-person meetings and participation in the workshops will be required. The internship will begin with introductions to ACHS staff, volunteers, and contractors working on the oral history project. The intern will learn about the oral history project and become acquainted with the “No Playbook” website. With staff supervision, the intern will layout a work-plan for continued recruiting of educator participants, scheduling meetings and workshops to fulfill the following, and completing the internship with a report on what has been learned and what recommendations are offered. During the internship, the intern will be required to attend, in-person or virtually, weekly check-ins with ACHS staff to monitor progress.
Outcomes: This summer intern will help us engage and recruit local educators, design and plan the summer workshops, and brainstorm some initial ideas for learning resources we can present and discuss with educators and their students the following school year. The workshops will focus on the purpose of the project, the methods and uses of oral histories, the substance of the oral history interviews, the functionality of the website, and the development of inquiry-based learning resources. These workshops will initiate class projects empowering
students to explore and utilize the website, and make recommendations based on their experiences. The end result will be feedback from the educators and students concerning the accessibility, comprehensibility, and utility of the website. The ACHS will then implement further improvements to the site and its resources. Among the additional improvements will be inquiry-based learning resources to link to the site so that other educators and their students can benefit from these efforts.
 
3. Researcher, writer and GIS assistant. “Boundaries and Bonds:  Rural Economy, Society, and the Law in Northern Albemarle County 
Two internships.
Terms: The Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society (ACHS) is seeking 1-2 graduate or advanced undergraduate student interns with strong research and writing skills, a background in American history, and familiarity with genealogical research and the local history of Albemarle County. Previous experience with Geographic Information Systems (GIS) a plus. Workspace will be provided in our Downtown Charlottesville office, and the intern will have the ability to work remotely if needed. These internships pay $17/hour for graduate students and $15/hour for undergraduates, for 300 hours of work over the summer.
 
About the ACHS: The ACHS has served the local community for over 80 years, collecting, preserving, and interpreting local history. Today we are embracing technology and digital archives to expand accessibility to historical information. Cvillepedia.org was created by Charlottesville Tomorrow in 2009 and has grown to be a source for community knowledge and history of the people, places, and events in Charlottesville and Albemarle County. The ACHS, in partnership with Charlottesville Tomorrow and the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library, is initiating a comprehensive strategic plan for Cvillepedia’s future—to facilitate improvement and expansion through community partnerships, to ensure the site is an equitably accessible archive for local history, and to envision the platform as a community-driven historical resource for and by local citizens that benefits the whole community.
 
Remote with occasional in-person in Charles City, VA
One internship 
Historical Documentation
Terms: The Chickahominy Indian Tribe seeks a summer intern to assist with historical documentation. The scope of work will include collecting and refining content for an educational tool (or tools) that accurately depicts the Tribe’s history and can be distributed to both internal and external individuals and organizations. Such tools may include photos, videos, modules, podcasts, and more. The necessary information and training needed to successfully complete the aforementioned activities will be provided by tribal staff and those designated by tribal leadership. Most work can be conducted remotely, however, in-person attendance might be required on occasion to gather information for the creation of the educational tool (or tools). This internship pays $15/hr for 250 hours of work. 
Goals: Collect historical and present-day information to populate an educational tool (or tools) that can be used internally and externally to convey accurate tribal history and information, in order to foster awareness and knowledge of the Chickahominy Tribe and Indigenous peoples. 
Outcomes: The outcome of this proposal includes promoting education and awareness of the Tribe in a factual and concise manner.
About: The Chickahominy Indian Tribe is located in Charles City County and consists of ~1,000 citizens, of which ~80% live within 1-hour of the Tribal Center. The Tribe was state recognized in 1983 and later gained recognition from the federal government as a sovereign nation in January 2018.
 
Charlottesville, Virginia
One internship
Research in historical records
Terms: The Preservers of the Daughters of Zion Cemetery see an undergraduate or graduate student intern to conduct research on the cemetery’s early decades (1873-1900), in particular on the Reconstruction-era teachers associated with the cemetery. Strong research and writing skills required; coursework in African-American history is a plus.This 200-hour internship pays $15 an hour—roughly $3,000 for the summer.
Goals: The cemetery, a unique form of built landscape, offers a rich and largely unexplored site for documenting and interpreting the history of enslaved and free Black citizens in Charlottesville both before and after Emancipation. Founded during Reconstruction by the Daughters of Zion Society, a sororal organization, the private cemetery provided a dignified alternative to the segregated Oakwood Cemetery across the street; as such, it offers a unique framework for interpreting the history of the antebellum African Americans who founded self-help organizations and promoted African-American commerce, education, and entrepreneurship during Reconstruction. It also provides material for closer analysis of sororal African-American organizations, which have not received as much attention as their fraternal counterparts.
Outcomes: The intern will work closely with the Preservers of the Daughters of Zion Cemetery to develop specific outcomes for the internship, which will include a written research report and a StoryMap to be published on the DOZC website and the Institute for Public History website. The chief outcome will be new, primary research that amplifies the Civil War and Reconstruction history of the cemetery, and by extension, Charlottesville. 
About: The cemetery was founded in 1873 by a group of African-American women who wanted to provide private burial services and a cemetery for black Charlottesvillians. The Daughters of Zion Society also owned a community center, called Zion Hall, which housed many local civic and religious groups and events. After decades of neglect, another group of committed local women, the Preservers of the Daughters of Zion Cemetery, formed in 2015 to restore the cemetery. Their approach to restoration, which includes restoring its public memory as well as its physical beauty, constitutes a new paradigm for presenting the public history of African-American spaces.
 
Gibbes Museum of Art 
Charleston, South Carolina
One internship 
Collections and exhibitions
Terms: The intern will be introduced to the day-to-day operations of a mid-sized art museum, and oriented to the professional policies and practices that guide museums. In this position the intern will work closely with senior curatorial and collections teams in the planning, development and execution of special exhibitions, the rotation of the permanent collection galleries, and overall collections care and interpretation. This unique opportunity will be available to an undergraduate rising junior or senior with a particular interest in American art and art history preferred. Background in art history, American studies, or museum studies is required.  Curiosity, adaptability, and self-starter qualities are valued.  Students who thrive in a cohesive, team-based environment, and who are excited by the possibilities of working closely across departments in a mid-size museum are ideal. Candidates who are under-represented in the museum field are strongly encouraged to apply. This internship pays $12 an hour for 300 hours of on-site work. Interns must secure their own housing in Charleston. 
About: Located in the heart of downtown Charleston, South Carolina, the Gibbes Museum of Art is known for its dynamic exhibition programs and its exceptional collection of American art that provides a vibrant introduction to the visual culture of America and the American South from the colonial era to the present. The Museum presents six to eight special exhibitions annually, and organizes over 100 educational programs and events that respond to the region’s unique art history, Charleston's diverse demographics, and its reputation as a top tourist destination in the United States.
Goals: The intern will assist with the planning, development, and execution of special exhibitions and changes to the permanent collection galleries as well as activities related to collections management. Duties to include: the development of object checklists, creation of installation plans, loan initiation, and communication with artists and lenders. Additionally, assisting with annual collections inventory, cataloging new acquisitions, preparing works for outgoing loan, researching objects, and writing label copy for upcoming exhibitions and the mobile app will be part of the intern’s responsibilities.
Outcomes: Outcomes expected are an overall familiarity with museum collections care, policy and practice; familiarity with exhibitions planning, development and execution; and an understanding of museum values, ethics and goals in a professional team oriented environment that believes art museums serve as spaces for transformational community conversations.
 
Home Places: Mapping Black Virginia
Charlottesville, Virginia
Two to three internships
Historical research, digital storytelling, community engagement  
Terms: Interns will help plan, design, and execute a digital storytelling project designed to provide middle and high school students with the skills to research and document their own family and community histories. Interns must have research, writing, communication, and analytical skills. Coursework in American or African American history or demonstrated evidence of interest in that history is essential; coursework or experience in secondary education or community engagement a plus. Experience using ArcGIS digital mapping tools or making StoryMaps is desired but not required (we will teach you how to use these tools). Interns will meet regularly with a supervisor from the project. One of the internships requires a car or access to one; interns will be reimbursed for mileage. Some remote work may be possible. These internships pay $22/hr for grad students and $15/hr for undergrads and May grads, for 150-300 hours of work over the summer.
Goals: Identify potentially fruitful partnerships between UVA and public schools in central Virginia, and help lay the groundwork for the pilot project described above.
Outcomes: Contribute to the design of a pilot project for public schools that would engage students in the research and documentation of their family or community histories, using digital research, mapping, and storytelling tools.
About: Scholars from across UVA are working together in the Karsh Institute of Democracy’s “Home Places: Mapping Black Virginia Working Group” to create a digital storytelling project that identifies the untold narratives of Black communities throughout Virginia, from Reconstruction to the present day. The working group hopes to pilot a program offering resources for public school students to produce family and community histories and for documenting Black place-making on Grounds at UVA. 
 
King William, Virginia (hybrid options possible)
One internship
Museum intern
Terms: The Pamunkey Indian Museum & Cultural Center seeks an intern to work closely with the Museum Director and Tribal staff on a variety of projects. Undergraduate and graduate students should have at least one year of focused study in history, anthropology, archeology, museum studies, arts, culture and/or another related field. Based on current projects, preference will be given to students with a demonstrated interest in traditional or community-based arts administration, museum collections management or exhibition development. The Pamunkey Indian Museum & Cultural Center is located on the Pamunkey Indian Reservation in King William, VA. Due to the nature of current projects, work will need to be completed onsite, with the possibility for a hybrid schedule on some projects. The 250 hours of the internships must be divided over a 12-week period (from the first week of June through the last week of August) with the intern averaging 21 hours per week. A final schedule will be negotiated with the Museum Director. This internship pays $15 per hour.
Goals: Internship experiences could focus in the following areas: processing and digitizing of archival material; documenting, photographing, and cataloging of artifact collections; exhibition development, design and curation; developing training materials for Tribal artists, including workshops on small business build out, website management, online sales and utilization of social media platforms; designing social media content for the museum and creating blog posts to share internally with the Tribal community. All internships will include clerical activities, operational tasks, research, writing content (social media, exhibition, resource materials, etc.), assisting with public and private museum tours, and providing services related to public outreach. If desired, the intern will also have the opportunity to actively work on other Tribal projects under the Cultural Resources Department.
Outcomes: The tasks and project undertaken are negotiable, with the primary goal being to move the mission of the museum forward and enrich the student's understanding of the history, culture, and community of the Pamunkey Indian Tribe.
About: The Pamunkey Indian Museum & Cultural Center is owned and operated by the Pamunkey Indian Tribe. The museum is administered under the Tribe’s Cultural Resources Department. The focus of the museum is to share the Pamunkey Indian Tribe’s history and way of life from over 12,000 years ago through to the present. The museum opened on October 11, 1980 and has remained relatively unchanged for over the last 40 years. Currently, the museum is undergoing significant transformations in the public and collection storage spaces. All of the work being conducted at the museum is in consultation and collaboration with Pamunkey Tribal Citizens.
 
Dumfries, Virginia
One internship
Historical research
The Prince William County Historical Commission, in coordination with the Planning Office and the Office of Historic Preservation, is seeking an iintern (advanced undergraduate or May graduate) to conduct a local historical research project.
Terms The Intern needs to demonstrate the capability of working independently, possess strong oral and written communications skills along with organizational skills. Previous experience with archival research is helpful but not required. The candidate must have access to housing and transportation to the office and research repositories. The intern’s workspace will be in the main administrative offices for the Office of Historic Preservation, located in the Williams Ordinary at 17674 Main Street, Dumfries, VA 22026. Hybrid options may be available in consultation with the selected candidate, but in-person attendance at monthly Historical Commission meetings is required. This research project pays a stipend of $4,500 for not more than 300 hours.
Goals  In light of the 250th anniversary of the American Revolution, the goal of this project is to enhance and complete existing historical information about Prince William County citizens’ role in the conflict. The majority of the project entails researching and creating a roster of Prince William County residents who fought in the American Revolution, as there is currently no existing comprehensive list. The final product will be both the completed roster and an associated annotated bibliography. Digital copies will be posted online and hard copies will be made available to the Ruth E. Lloyd Information Center (RELIC) through Prince William County Libraries. 
Outcomes  The intern will work closely with County historians and experts to review pension records and other historical records to create both documents. The final project will also include a brief presentation to the
Historical Commission at the August meeting. Attendance at and reporting to the Prince William County Historical Commission during its regularly scheduled monthly meeting is required. These meetings take place on the second Tuesday
of the month at 7:30 pm at 5 County Complex Court, Suite 210, Prince William, VA. The summer meeting dates are June 11, July 9, and August 13.
About  The Prince William County Historical Commission is composed of 16 citizens appointed by the Board of County Supervisors. The Historical Commission advises the Board in its efforts to identify, preserve, protect and promote Prince William County's historical sites, artifacts, buildings and events. Members review land development applications and make recommendations regarding their impact on cultural resources; produce publications related to local history; provide input on the installation of historical highway markers; propose properties to be classified as County Registered Historic Sites; conduct tours; and award community service certificates.
 
Scottsville, Virginia
One part-time internship 
Museum Research Project
Terms: Seeking an advanced undergraduate or graduate student with an interest in history as revealed by material culture, who has computer skills and a passion for organization. Personal transportation is required, as part of the project involves work at the Scottsville Museum and within the community.  There will also be some research which may be done via home computer and scanning which can be done at the University of Virginia’s art department under the supervision of one of our Board Members. The internship will be between Monday, May 22nd through Sunday, August 13th, including a formal project presentation to the museum board on the first
Saturday in August, an possible exhibition, and a written article for our newsletter and website. This 10-week internship is part-time (16-24 hours per week) and pays $12-$13//hour (undergraduate) or $15/hour (graduate).
Goals: The Scottsville Museum is a small-town museum with a limited budget run by volunteers. In 2023, several board members curated an exhibition “Still I Rise,” featuring the courage and resilience of local African-American families. The exhibit featured churches, community organizations, and families who united to make meaningful lives for themselves and to educate their children. The museum is interested in continuing our research on the items loaned for the exhibition, with the goal of expanding our archives on African-American families, and nearby schools and organizations. Through research on specific items or themes, our interns will deepen
their historical research skills, gain hands-on experience working with archives, and play a role in telling our town or area’s stories.
Outcomes: With the guidance of three of the members of the Museum Board, the intern will undertake research to illuminate the significance of objects, which will form the basis for a small exhibition either at the Museum or as a digital exhibition on the web. In addition, the intern(s) will write a four- to five-page report reviewing the summer’s work and give a brief report to the Scottsville Museum Board of Directors at the August board meeting.
About: The Scottsville Museum and Historic Landmarks Foundation is a nonprofit, incorporated organization which seeks to preserve for the public benefit the historical, natural, and artistic heritage of the Scottsville community and surrounding areas of southern Albemarle County. It is housed in a former Disciples of Christ Church, built in 1846, and its adjacent parsonage, the Barclay House. The latter building has been renovated to create research and meeting space, and to house technical systems, archives, library, and storage space. The Museum is on Main Street in downtown Scottsville. It displays permanent and rotating exhibits relating to the town and its history. It is open to the public on weekends from April to October, and by appointment at other times. Should a prospective intern be interested in visiting the Museum, a private tour can be arranged by contacting Connie Geary at info@scottsvillemuseum.com.
 
Charlottesville, Virginia
One intership
Documenting Student Life at UVA Law
Terms: The Special Collections department of the UVA Law Library seeks a graduate student or advanced undergraduate student to research and compile histories of UVA Law School student organizations from the school’s founding to the present. With a goal of documenting new stories and voices in our history, this research will lay the groundwork for future exhibits, oral histories, web projects, and archival guides related to student life at the Law School. This work will involve in-person archival research at UVA, as well as research and writing that could be done remotely or in designated project space at the Law Library. The intern must have strong skills in historical research and writing and enjoy working in a collaborative environment. This internship pays $20/hr.
Goals: The intern’s main responsibilities will be conducting historical research into UVA Law School student organizations and synthesizing this research into brief historical reports. The diversity of student groups that will be the focus of this research include moot court (est. 1830s), student affinity groups (historical and current; i.e. Women of Color, Libel Show, Voz Latina/LALO), legal journals (est. 1880s; there are currently 10 at the Law School), and Law School student government. The intern will work closely with Law Special Collections staff to plan archival research at the UVA Law Library and UVA’s Small Special Collections Library.
Outcomes: In addition to expanding our institutional knowledge and memory, this work will form the basis for a wide range of future projects, especially web and physical exhibits and oral history interviews. Written histories of individual student organizations will ideally include references to related archival collections and secondary sources. For research findings and archival discoveries of particular interest, there will be opportunities for the intern to publish a blog post on the Law Library webpage. This internship will offer professional development in historical and archival research, historical writing, and team-based project work in an institutional and academic archive.
About Law Special Collections: The UVA School of Law was founded in 1819 and is the second-oldest continuously running law school in the United States. Law Special Collections is the institutional repository for the UVA School of Law and preserves and provides access to a diverse archive of legal history materials. Our collections include rare books, manuscripts, archival records and publications, and photographs. An important part of our mission is preserving, researching, and making accessible the history of the UVA School of Law.
 
Virginia Folklife Program, Virginia Humanities 
Charlottesville, Virginia (or remote)
One or two internships
Assistant to Virginia State Folklorist and Digital Media Specialist
Terms: The Virginia Folklife Program seeks an intern to work closely with the Virginia State Folklorist and Digital Media Specialist on a variety of projects. Graduate students should have at least one year of study in a folklife-related field (see below) and demonstrated interested in traditional or community-based arts and/or arts administration. Advanced undergraduates should have coursework related to folklife (ethnomusicology, anthropology, history, American Studies, or other arts and culture fields). Interns must be able to work a minimum of 8 hours a week, with 16-20 hours a week preferred. The Virginia Folklife Program offices are located at the Dairy Market on Preston Avenue in Charlottesville, and interns may work in person, remotely, or hybrid. This internship is for 200 hours o er the course of the summer, and pays $15/hr for undergraduates and $20/hour for graduate students.
Goals and Outcomes: Interns’ duties will include some combination of: processing fieldwork materials (interview transcription); developing profiles of artists for our website and social media; design social media content;  supporting Apprenticeship Program (event planning, application review, etc.); assisting with the Richmond Folk Life Festival; market research and/or audience survey development; writing content for our online publication Sights & Sounds. If desired, the intern will also have the opportunity to design and undertake independent fieldwork on a region, tradition, or community in Virginia to add to our archives and publish on Sights & Sounds.
About: The Virginia Folklife Program is the state center for the documentation, presentation, support, and celebration of Virginia’s rich cultural heritage. The Virginia Folklife Program was established in 1989 as part of Virginia Humanities, the state humanities council, with funding support from the Virginia Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts Folk Arts Program. Whether sung or told, hand-crafted or performed, Virginia’s rich folklife refers to those “arts of everyday life” that reflect a sense of traditional knowledge and connection to community. Virginia’s folkways are rich with traditions that have been rooted in the Commonwealth for centuries, as well as those that more recently have been carried here and nourished by Virginia’s diverse immigrant communities.
 
Richmond, Virginia
One internship
Archival Research, Norfolk Southern Collection
Terms: The Virginia Museum of History and Culture seeks an advanced undergraduate student to inventory and describe the correspondence of Norfolk and Western Railway President Lucius E. Johnson. While much of this material is typed, annotations and some items are handwritten. This intern must have strong skills in historical research, writing, and enjoy working in a collaborative environment. An interest in economic history and railroad history is helpful. This internship pays $15/hr. with a max of 200 hours. 
Goals: The intern will inventory the correspondence, 1904-1917, of Lucius E. Johnson as President and Chairman of the Board of the Norfolk and Western Railway, one of the predecessor railroads of the current Norfolk Southern. Folders will be reviewed for subject matter and date range. Some preservation tasks and minimal reorganization will be required. This is one series of a much larger collection. 
Outcomes: The intern will provide descriptive information about one of the largest series in this collection. The intern will gain historical research skills and practical experience handling archival materials. 
About: The Virginia Museum of History Culture: The Virginia Museum of History & Culture is owned and operated by the Virginia Historical Society—a private, non-profit organization. The historical society is the oldest cultural organization in Virginia, and one of the oldest and most distinguished historical organizations in the nation. For use in its state history museum and its renowned research library, the historical society cares for a collection of nearly nine million items representing the ever-evolving story of Virginia.