The McNeil Center for Early American Studies sponsors two summer internships to create paid opportunities for undergraduate students and terminal masters students attending MCEAS Consortium institutions to develop their interests and skills in doing history in professional settings. Toward this end, the McNeil Center partners with local institutions that are willing to emphasize mentorship and demonstrate a commitment to the professional and intellectual development of the interns. Each internship will have components including research, analysis, and communication revolving around a public-facing project or projects at the partner institution. Interns will also be encouraged to participate in the McNeil Center's summer programming.
Internships will last approximately 8 weeks and will require full-time on-site work (35 hours per week) in the Philadelphia area. Beginning and end dates will be arranged between the hosting institution and the intern, but internships should be completed by Sept. 1.
Interns will receive a $3,000 stipend. The stipend is intended to cover housing in the Philadelphia area, travel to and from Philadelphia, and daily living expenses – all arrangements and costs for which are the responsibility of the intern. One half of the stipend will be paid upon arrival in Philadelphia, and the second half will be remitted at the completion of the internship.
The McNeil Center for Early American Studies is soliciting institutional partners to host summer interns who will carry out public-facing history work in the greater Philadelphia region during the summer of 2023.
The McNeil Center aims to create paid opportunities for undergraduate and terminal-degree masters students to develop their interests and skills in doing history in professional settings. Internships will last approximately 8 weeks and will require full-time work (35 hours per week).
Toward this end, the McNeil Center seeks to partner with institutions that are willing to emphasize mentorship and can demonstrate a plan for, and commitment to, the professional and intellectual development of interns. Each internship should have components that include research, analysis, and communication. The program aims to link interns with institutions with specific projects to which they can contribute, and to integrate the results of those projects with the intellectual life of the Center.
Internships should relate broadly to the Center’s mission to facilitate inquiry into the histories and cultures of North America in the Atlantic world before 1850. However, the internship program hopes to solicit proposals from a diverse array of institutional partners. These might include museums, historic sites, or digital humanities projects. But they also might include public art projects with a historical component or initiatives to reinterpret monuments.
The McNeil Center invites potential partners to submit a letter of interest to Laura Keenan Spero by January 20, 2023.
Letter writers should address the following:
• What project or duties would define the proposed internship?
• How does this project draw on and contribute to the work of doing history?
• What types of teaching or mentorship would you provide for the student?
• Is there a possibility that your institution could contribute funding toward a stipend?
Questions about the internship program and about the letters should also be directed to the McNeil Center’s Coordinator of Scholarly Programs, Laura Keenan Spero.
Call for Applications for the C. Dallett Hemphill Summer Internships
The McNeil Center for Early American Studies at the University of Pennsylvania is co-sponsoring five summer internships in the summer of 2022. The Center’s partner institutions in 2022 are the American Philosophical Society, Bartram’s Garden, Winterthur Museum, and History Making Productions (with the Carpenters’ Company of Philadelphia). The stipend for each internship is $3,000.
These internships are open to undergraduate and terminal-degree masters students enrolled at McNeil Center Consortium institutions and are designed to introduce students to professional work in public history settings. Interns are expected to work full-time (35 hours per week) for at least 8 weeks. Beginning and end dates will be arranged between the hosting institution and the intern, but internships should be completed by September 1. Stipends are intended to cover housing, travel, and daily living expenses – all arrangements and costs for which are the responsibility of the intern. One half of the stipend will be paid at the beginning of the fellowship, and the other half will be remitted at the completion of the internship.
Please submit applications by April 15, 2022.
Partner Institutions and Position Description
- American Philosophical Society. This internship is an opportunity to learn more about archival research and digital scholarship while gaining hands-on experience developing a digital humanities research project in a research library setting. As a contributor to “Revolutionary City: A Portal to the Nation’s Founding,” a public-facing digital archive, this intern will work with manuscript materials created or received in Philadelphia during the American Revolution (1774-1783). They will focus on the transcription of original manuscripts, metadata creation, and biographical research on women and men named in these rare primary source materials. Special attention will be paid to recovering the voices of women and men marginalized in the archival record. Not only will the intern have the opportunity to contribute transcriptions and metadata to the published digital archive, but they will also learn how to research in the extensive manuscript, print, and microform collections of the APS and the newly-arrived collections from the David Library of the American Revolution.
- Bartram’s Garden. This internship has some flexibility in focus depending on the intern’s interests, but is largely intended to support the creation of new content for the site’s updated website, scheduled to launch over the summer. Bartram’s Garden has a long and varied history, and their goal is to provide more accessible content on the site’s broad history via the new website. This intern’s work could include a focused research project, interpretative writing for website posts or on-site interpretation and tours, digitization of materials, or cataloguing and organization in the collections, and migrating digital history resources to the website. Topics for research and writing could include Indigenous history and archaeology at Bartram’s Garden, the environmental and landscape history of the Lower Schuylkill, among other things. This intern will ideally have strong writing skills and some experience with digital imaging and working on websites.
- Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library. This internship will contribute to a long-term permanent collection reinstallation project titled “Bearing Witness at Winterthur.” Winterthur Museum hopes that this exhibition will rethink the narratives told through the site’s collection and transform the relationships between staff, collections, and audiences. Toward this end, this internship will center on community engagement and particularly the interpretation of fragments from Views of North America, a historic wallpaper designed in 1834 in Paris by Jean-Julien Deltil, produced by Zuber in Alsace, and which was among the company’s most popular products in the United States. Views of North America represents white and Black tourists on the American grand tour. Its design embodies an early-nineteenth-century European exoticizing view of a multi-ethnic and multi-racial American society and conveys the prejudices against a transatlantic Black community newly visible to white Americans in the early decades of the nineteenth century. Yet the design’s unintended consequence is also the prominent depiction of the 1830s Black middle-class, represented with both the leisure time and the disposable income necessary to partake in the fashionable tourism typically associated with white American privilege. This internship will build a student of culture and heritage’s skillset in community engagement around an object that addresses complex issues connected to early American history. The intern will organize meetings with key identified stakeholders in the region, and develop a questionnaire to investigate local reactions to and thoughts about the Zuber paper, its installation and interpretation at Winterthur. The intern will conduct at least the initial round of interviews as well as a written report making recommendations for interpretative directions.
- History Making Productions (with the Carpenters’ Company of Philadelphia). History Making Productions is working with the Carpenters’ Company to implement a planning process for Reimagining Carpenters' Hall. This is a significant public history undertaking intended to make the stories of the First Continental Congress, Philadelphia in 1774-75, and the people both inside the Hall and “out of doors” creatively presented to site visitors, both in-person and virtually. The Company will be celebrating its 300th anniversary in 2024 and this initiative, together with the rehabilitation of the Hall and other activies, are intended to position the stories of this time more prominently within the Federal historic district of the City and in the public’s consciousness. HMP is looking for two (2) interns with strong writing and communication skills; familiarity with the time period and previous research experience are also helpful but not required. Each intern will carry out research in order in part to populate the presentation materials that support the project’s choices/selections of stories, delivery platforms (exhibition, theatrical, podcast, virtual reality, video, education, website, etc.), information/database management, and proposal drafting necessary to secure finance for implementation. The HMP/CCP interns may work remotely under the guidance of HMP Founder and Executive Producer Sam Katz.
This program is intended for undergraduate and terminal-degree masters students currently enrolled at McNeil Center Consortium institutions. A list of these institutions can be found at http://www.mceas.org/consortium.shtml. If your institution is not yet a Consortium member, please contact Amy Baxter-Bellamy (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information. Students should explain their interest and (where applicable) experience in history, historic preservation, museum studies, or archival work.
Please address applications and inquiries to:
Laura Keenan Spero
Coordinator of Scholarly Programs, McNeil Center
Applicants should submit the following items 1-4 in a single pdf document. Letters of recommendation should be submitted directly from the recommender.
1. Cover Sheet (including contact info, institution, major/minor, anticipated date of graduation, recommender, and ranking of interest in internships – do not rank an internship for which you do not wish to be considered).
2. Application letter. Applicants should explain their interest in these internships, relevant experience and coursework, commitment to pursuing interests in public history or related fields, and what they hope to gain from this summer internship.
4. Transcript (unofficial).
5. Letter of recommendation from professional reference (professor or public history professional): due via email directly from recommender to Laura Keenan Spero (email@example.com) by April 15, 2022.