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Curatorial Internships

A curatorial internship with Colonial Williamsburg provides the opportunity to assist with research, management, interpretation and preservation of the Foundation’s fine art, decorative arts, archaeological, architectural and/or folk art collections, while gaining professional experience through hands-on training. It is a prearranged learning experience, either paid or unpaid, for students interested in a career in a decorative arts, fine arts, history museum, or historic site.

Interns are assigned to one of Colonial Williamsburg’s curatorial disciplines: archaeological artifacts, architectural artifacts, ceramics and glass, furniture, mechanical arts, metals, musical instruments, paintings and drawings, prints and maps, numismatics, textiles and costumes, toys, or zooarchaeological materials. Interns work directly with museum curators.

Thanks to the generosity of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Americana Foundation, students may apply annually for five paid positions ranging from three months to a year in duration.

Dates and compensation

Paid internships are full-time and generally start the end of May or early June. Details about compensation will be listed with each job posting. The 12-month Mellon Foundation Internship and the Americana Foundation Internship are benefits eligible after three months of service.


Requirements will vary with each position, but generally, applicants must be enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program and have completed at least two years of academic credit. Interested candidates must have received their degree no more than one year prior to the application deadline.

Intern placement

Successful candidates will be placed with a curator based on the applicant’s training and interests as well as the ongoing and special needs of the department.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Will housing be provided?
    No. We regret that the Foundation does not provide housing with receipt of a curatorial internship. We will, however, do our best to help successful applicants find a safe and affordable living situation. 
  • How do I find out when I can apply for a curatorial internship?
    Internship postings will appear on Foundation’s job network in late January and remain active for about two weeks. Applications will only be accepted at this time.
  • May I submit my application early?
    No. Applications will only be accepted when the job listing is posted.
  • I missed the application deadline. May I submit a late application?
    No. We regret that late applications will not be accepted.
  • Will I be notified when my application is received?
    Yes, you will receive an email from the Colonial Williamsburg Human Resources department acknowledging receipt of your application.
  • When will I hear if I receive the internship?
    Correspondence will differ based on the volume of applicants, but all candidates will be notified if they are selected to move forward with an interview or if their application is no longer being considered. Applicants will hear of our decision by early April.
  • How can I check the status of my application?
    You can check the status of your application at any time by using your online account or by calling the HR help desk, 757-220-7713.
  • Can I receive academic credit for my internship?
    Students seeking academic credit must make arrangements in advance with their school and internship advisor.

How to Apply

Curatorial internship job postings will be active for a two-week period at the end of January. If you do not see a job listing, the position is either unavailable or not yet posted. Interested candidates should be prepared to submit the following:

  • Curriculum Vita
  • Unofficial academic transcript
  • Statement of Intent. In no more than 250 words, state how you would benefit from an internship at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.
  • Two letters of recommendation.

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