Waterman building

What could you learn from a local historical society?

Whether you have a love for history, or just enjoy organizing and cataloging items, a local historical society can help expand your skills and nurture your passions.

The College of Arts and Sciences Internship Program, the University of Vermont History Department, the Center for Research on Vermont and the Vermont Historical Society have teamed up to provide semester-long internships at local Vermont historical societies for students in the College of Arts & Sciences.

The Internship:

Local historical societies in the state of Vermont often consist of one or two people and are in desperate need of help from passionate and dedicated students. Due to winter hours and building availability, some societies can only offer internships during certain seasons. 

See currently available internships

Hours required:  A typical intern will work 8-10 hours per week for a total of 120 hours across the semester. Most internship sites offer flexible schedules and/or remote work.

Internship Locations:

In 2018, internships were available at historical societies in Island Pond, Dorset, Hardwick, Glover, Rockingham, Barre and St. Albans as well as in Burlington at a community arts organization. If you know of a historical society who would like to participate, please send them here

Transportation assistance is available for those placed in towns that are farther afield. Please contact Sophia.Trigg@uvm.edu with questions. Some internship locations offer perks such as housing, a small stipend, or meal money.

Internship Focus:

Backstory: Vermont offers four general types of internships. But each is customizable to what the student is passionate about and what the individual historical society needs. It all depends on you and the society you are placed with giving you and them the best possible experience!

Collections & Archive Management – Interns will be working with written records, cleaning and moving artifacts, inventorying and cataloguing the collection, photographing artifacts and researching and writing about local stories/history. This internship is meant to give students a hands-on experience with the day-to-day work of an archivist.

Exhibitions – Interns will be inventorying and cataloguing artifacts around a certain topic, working with written records, cleaning and mounting artifacts for display, photographing and, if possible, scanning records, researching and writing short histories pertaining to a theme, creating visuals and displays and creating exhibit interactives and educational components. This internship will bring interns one step closer to being a true museum employee as they complete exhibition-related tasks. 

Public Outreach – Interns will work on website development, social media, and newsletters, will write stories and develop original content specific to the town, promote events and/or lecture series, and visit retirement homes, libraries and other town locations to spread awareness about the historical society.

Special Project – Interns will be working on a special project defined by the historical society. These projects ideally would take a semester or less to complete so that the intern will take it from beginning to end. Types of projects may include creating a tour of the society’s museum, creating an inventory from scratch, fundraising for a specific exhibit or program and/or assisting in a move between buildings.

Academic Credit:

If the intern is an undergraduate student at UVM, they must enroll in internship credit during the semester they are participating.

  • 40 hours of internship work required per credit. Ex. Three credits = 120 hours.
  • Students must have an identified Historical Society (HS) site mentor, register in a class (History Dept or AS-190) and work out a work plan that is approved by their academic mentor, and HS advisor and keep weekly reports and submit a final reflection paper.

Note: If the intern is not a UVM student, the internship does not have to be for credit.

Professional Standards:

Students must have regular meetings with their site mentor, work out a plan with clear deliverables to benefit the historical society, arrive on-time and ready to work, and maintain professional dress and standard of work throughout.

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Quick Help:

Contact the College of Arts & Sciences Internship Coordinator            Sophia.Trigg@uvm.edu 

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