- Please read about how to submit your application on our website. We will not review applications submitted via Handshake; we will only review applications submitted via the Smithsonian Online Academic Appointment Database.
- This internship is a virtual experience.
- All accepted interns will have the option to apply for an internship stipend based on disclosed financial need after their selection.
Undocumented Organizing Collecting Initiative is a three-year project tracing the emergence of undocumented youth activism over the past twenty years by recording, analyzing, and interpreting political strategies via the collection of oral histories and objects. The Project engages in community-based collecting efforts in six key geographical locations to capture the progression of this multifaceted social and political movement led by undocumented people in the United States, many of whom remain undocumented today. The project is leading new practices at NMAH by centering community voices and collaborating with participants. Because of undocumented American precarious status, the project works to ensure that the participants have control over their oral history at every stage of the process.
The intern’s main tasks will fall under two categories:
- Indexing and incorporating a historical Asian American Pacific Islander analysis
- Utilizing the oral histories to compose digital storytelling opportunities for the project’s forthcoming website.
In order to compile, analyze, and create an accessible archive for both public and researchers, oral histories are transcribed and an indexed. Indexing incorporates an abstract, notable quotes, time stamps, and historical analysis of the recordings. Intern will listen to the recordings already at hand (projected 10 at the start of internship), index, and conclude findings to project team. At the same time, intern will listen to the oral histories and create potential digital storytelling opportunities to be featured in the project’s forthcoming website.
Goal: Overall, this internship serves as an introduction into oral history documentation, learning archival processes, and creating storytelling components for project’s website.
Anticipated Learning Objectives: By the end of this internship, the intern will be able to:
- Understand the intentional steps of creating accessible material out of an oral history recording
- Develop communication skills to present summarization and important key takeaways of a raw oral history recording
- Broaden critical thinking skills by absorbing data, seeing themes and creating key questions about the participant’s life.
- Develop storytelling and narrative components for accessible use • Meaningfully participate in a team-based work environment
Expected Responsibilities: During the internship, the intern should expect to:
- Work with project’s oral historian on indexing’s best practices
- Research and create short timeline of Asian American and Pacific Islander political history in the United States
- Incorporate historical analysis into each oral history index • Assist mentor with drafting stories and narratives from the oral histories
- Correspond and collaborate with project team
- Research effective digital presentations of oral histories
Ideal Qualifications / Prerequisites: The ideal intern applicant is/has:
- Familiarity and interest in oral history process
- Interest in project’s content (historical and contemporary political activism, youth led, immigration, Asian American studies).
- Demonstrated high interest in storytelling centered on Asian American and Pacific Islander experiences.
- Excellent researching skills and presenting findings in a cohesive manner.
- Effective communicator in speaking and writing.
- Ability to work in a team setting-both in tight deadlines and phased projects.
Audience: This internship is intended to be generalized to provide individuals initial experience in this field. This internship is intended for 2-3 intern. Community college students, undergraduates, recent graduates, graduate students, career changers, and other professionals are encouraged to apply. This internship’s ideal audience is for people who:
- Demonstrate high interest in collecting initiative’s content, especially with youth activism, immigration, Asian American studies, and/ or social movements
- Demonstrate previous experience or interest in working with oral histories or any audio/visual recorded material.
- Demonstrate previous experience in creative storytelling projects.
Timeline: This internship will take place Summer 2021 for 12 weeks. This internship will be full time (approximately 40 hours a 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 provides a guaranteed stipend of $6,000 for a 40 hours per week internship schedule. Additionally, upon selection, interns will have the opportunity to apply for additional funding 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.
If you have any questions about the internship, please contact Caroline Fiertz, Interns & Fellows Program Manager at the National Museum of American History, at NMAHintern@si.edu or 202-633-3556.