University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
Highschool

The Teen Summer Internship is an opportunity open to current high school students who are passionate about museums, archaeology, anthropology, and related fields. During the three-week program, we strive to provide our teen interns with rich opportunities to develop career skill sets, offering practical, professional experiences and interactions with the Museum’s offices, classrooms, and galleries.


The internships run Monday through Friday, 9:00am-3:00pm, for three weeks. Some internships run from June 24 – July 12 while others run from July 15 – August 2. The dates of each internship will be noted in their descriptions, which will appear under the Internship section below at the beginning of the new year. Attendance each day is mandatory. The Teen Summer Internship Program is only open to current high school students (rising sophomores, juniors, seniors, or will be high school graduate).

We value diversity at our museum and will provide an equal opportunity to all applicants. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, or disability status. Additionally, we can offer lunch and SEPTA tokens to interns who request financial assistance. You will be able to state your needs for assistance in the application itself.


Daily Schedule

In the mornings, you will work with your supervisor on their summer projects and tasks. You might also spend time working with other staff in your supervisor’s department or with other interns, but typically the mornings are the time for you to observe, assist, and be mentored by a staff supervisor in one of the Penn Museum’s departments. You will be able to apply for specific departments and staff that fit your interests and experience.

In the afternoons, all of the teen summer interns will come together as a group to get a broader understanding of the Penn Museum. Some afternoons you will get gallery tours to see what artifacts we have on display. Other afternoons will involve meeting with a wide variety of departments in the Museum to get a better understanding of the career paths that exist. On Wednesdays and Fridays you will also participate in professional development workshops with the internship program coordinator.

Teen Internships in the morning

The Digital Humanities interns spending their morning working on a digital exhibit on Cuneiform tablets.

Teen Internships in the afternoon

The teen summer interns spending their afternoon as a group learning more about the work of the Museum Library and getting to see our rare book collection.


Application Process

Below is a list of each internship with a link to their application. Please read the descriptions of all available internships as it is likely that internship with departments you have never heard of before are excellent fits for your talents and interests. If multiple internships would be a good fit for you, you may apply to them all, but applicants will only be accepted into a single internship in a single year.

Once you have applied to the department, or departments, of your choosing have an adult who can speak to your strengths and accomplishments fill out the online letter of recommendation, follow link below. Application and reference forms will be available from January 15 to March 1. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered.

2019 applications are now closed. If you have any questions please contact us at (215) 898-1018 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Internships – Summer 2019

The Babylonian Section is seeking an intern to help with the electronic Pennsylvania Sumerian Dictionary – a project dedicated to building a complete dictionary of the Sumerian language, which was used in ancient Iraq. The intern will, working with university students and interns, help convert proto-cuneiform texts into an alphabet that is more appropriate for an online dictionary. If you are passionate about language or ancient Iraq, can work well with others, are patient, and are comfortable with computers you should apply.

This internship will run from June 24 – July 12 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

The Conservation Department is seeking an intern to help with various summer activities which may include the examination and re-housing of artifacts, as well as research and working with the public. If you are patient as well as comfortable working with your hands you should apply.

The internship will run from June 24 – July 12 or July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

The Exhibitions Department is looking for a teen intern to assist the Interpretive Planning Manager in carrying out exhibition research. This includes surveying visitors in the museum, collecting and entering visitor data, and helping to produce reports. If you are passionate about exhibitions, comfortable in approaching and speaking with diverse audiences, as well as in using Microsoft Excel and Word you should apply.

This internship will run either from June 24 – July 12 or July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

The Chief Preparator is seeking an intern to help us maintain our existing galleries. This includes performing a wide range of maintenance tasks including touch-up painting, small repairs, lighting adjustments, AV troubleshooting, and more. If you like working with your hands, have experience with art, crafts, or fabrication, and are passionate about our galleries you should apply.

This internship will run from July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

Learning Programs is seeking an intern to help create new activities for our Archaeological Adventures Homeschool Days. This includes brainstorming, developing, prototyping, and testing new activities from K-12 audiences that highlight the Museum’s collection, Archaeology, or Anthropology. These activities usually involve an art-making component as well as connections to our Teaching Collection. If you are interested in museum education, are create and curious about object-based learning you should apply.

The internship will run from July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

The Outreach Programs Manager is seeking an intern to assist with preparing Artifact Loan Boxes for the 2019-2020 Academic Year. This project will include handling objects from the Museum’s Teaching Collection and updating the interpretation materials included in each Box. All those who are organized, experienced in art, crafts, or fabrication, and interested in learning how objects are used to create educational programs are encouraged to apply.

This internship will run either from June 24 – July 12 or July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

The Visitor Services Department is seeking an intern to help create and deliver an outstanding guest experience for the visitors at the Penn Museum. The intern will assist with welcoming and orientation of visitors, the collection, processing and analysis of visitor data as well as suggesting improvements to the visitor experience. If you are comfortable speaking and working with a wide variety of people, are creative and comfortable with Microsoft Word and Excel, join the Visitor Services Team.

This internship will run either from June 24 – July 12 or July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

The Academic Engagement department supports instructional use of the Penn Museum’s galleries and collections for university-level classes, student research on the collections, and extra-curricular programming for the Penn university audience. Internships in this department range from collections work with objects used for course objectives and student research, to research and writing on the Museum's own projects and programs, to marketing and event planning for the Penn student audience.

This internship will run from June 24 – July 12 or July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

Cartifacts is an informal, in-gallery public program that provides hands-on experiences for Penn Museum visitors of all ages. Cartifact Volunteers set up displays of five to ten touchable artifacts at carts located in the Museum’s galleries and explain the function and history of each object. Each cart is focused on a gallery theme. Cartifact Volunteers engage visitors in short-term discussions utilizing open-ended questions. An ideal Cartifact Intern demonstrates good listening and conversational skills, feels comfortable with public speaking and has enthusiasm for learning the Penn Museum’s collections and floor plan. Current Cartifacts to choose from are:

  • Life in the early Americas
  • Daily Life in Ancient Rome
  • Mummification in Ancient Egypt
  • Chinese Arts and Crafts

This internship will run either from June 24 – July 12 or July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

The Center for the Analysis of Archaeological Materials (CAAM) is a joint endeavor between the Penn Museum and the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Arts and Sciences (SAS). CAAM offers the facilities, materials, equipment, and expert personnel to teach a range of interdisciplinary subjects which links the natural sciences, the social sciences, and the humanities. Interns who are accepted will be working closely with CAAM instructors to learn about scientific techniques and cultural materials crucial to archaeologists and other scholars as they seek to interpret the past.

This internship will run either from June 24 – July 12 or July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants..

The Penn Libraries' Museum Library is seeking an intern to assist with a temporary exhibit of rare books at the Museum Library on a topic to be determined. This includes working with the Head of the Museum Library, the Museum Library Programming and Instruction Intern, and a curator to research the authors, design a promotional poster, make labels, and set up the exhibit, which will be on display during the afternoon of Friday, July 26. During the week after the exhibit, the intern will help the staff return the books to their proper locations and write a post for the Museum Library’s blog.

This internship will run from July 15 – August 2 depending on the availability of the strongest applicants.

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