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Museum Internship - Office of Museum Services

Job Description: Part-time (voluntary) internship in the Office of Museum Services; available in fall and spring each year.

Eligible Applicants: Graduate students in museum studies or related fields

Open: Until filled (up to 6 positions available each term)

Application Deadlines (subject to change):
Fall Internship – August 1 (internship starts in early September)
Spring Internship – November 1 (internship starts in early January)

The Institute of Museum and Library Services

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is an independent federal agency that fosters leadership, innovation, and a lifetime of learning by supporting museums and libraries throughout the country. In broad outline, IMLS grant programs are designed to achieve the following four objectives: (1) to stimulate excellence and provide access to learning and information resources in all types of libraries for individuals of all ages; (2) to promote targeted library services to people of diverse geographic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds, to individuals with disabilities, and to people with limited information skills; (3) to encourage museums in their educational role; (4) to assist museums in modernizing their facilities so that they are better able to conserve the cultural, historic and scientific heritage of the United States. Representative projects include: national leadership grants to support model projects in museums and libraries; library grants to states to improve access to information through electronic resources sharing; Native American library service grants to support the library programs used by tribes and Alaska Native villages; grants to support institution assessment of collections management and public programs in museums; and conservation grants to support the preservation of manuscripts, books and artifacts in the nation's museums.

Office of Museum Services

The Office of Museum Services (OMS) manages applications and grants that support museums in their efforts to provide engaging learning experiences for their audiences, enhance their roles as community anchor organizations, and improve the management and care of the collections entrusted to them by the American public. Our dedicated program staff is also actively involved in strategic partnerships and initiatives that advance the museum profession and strengthen the ability of the agency to serve its constituents.

OMS Internship Program

With a mission to advance, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grant-making, research, and policy development, internships in the Office of Museum Services at IMLS are designed to introduce graduate candidates in museum studies, or other related programs, to grant-making and analysis, trend studies, data analysis and synthesis and general research which help museums and libraries deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive.

An intern in OMS would be expected to dedicate up to 20 hours per week for a minimum of one semester. Interns would work closely with six portfolio teams (Diversity and Inclusion, Professional Development, Learning, Collections, Digital Technology, and Community) within OMS. The overall learning experience would include working on projects such as:

  • conducting scans and analysis of OMS grants;
  • helping with conference presentations;
  • learning about the multilayered dynamics of grants management in action by participating in various OMS meetings; and
  • spending some time during the internship learning about other IMLS departments.

We anticipate selecting up to 6 interns each semester. Solid writing skills and an interest in the arts and humanities are essential. Unfortunately, we are not able to pay our interns. We will cooperate in arrangements for graduate school credit.


Interested graduate students are encouraged to send their resumes with two references, cover letter stating which portfolio team best aligns with their interests or if they are flexible about working with any portfolio, and one writing sample to:

Reagan Moore
Museum Program Officer
Office of Museum Services
Institute of Museum and Library Services
955 L'Enfant Plaza North, SW, Suite 4000
Washington, DC, 20024-2135
rmoore@imls.gov

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is an equal opportunity employer. We maintain a year-round internship program.

Content last reviewed on
July 3, 2018