Internships National Portrait Gallery’ Internships
U.S. National Deadline: Ongoing – The National Portrait Gallery, as a museum of the Smithsonian Institution, offers formal internships to qualified applicants. A Smithsonian internship is a prearranged, structured learning experience that takes place within a specific time period, usually two to three months. The experience should be relevant both to the intern’s academic and professional goals and to the professional disciplines represented at the Smithsonian.
The National Portrait Gallery offers internships to undergraduate and graduate students and to individuals not affiliated with academic programs who have research or museum career interests. The availability of internships depends upon departmental projects and staff needs, as well as the background, skills, and interests of the applicant. Qualifications vary depending upon the project, but most are for upper-level undergraduate and graduate students. Please read the specific intern positions above before selecting projects on your application.
Various departments at the National Portrait Gallery sponsor interns throughout the year. Intern projects are based on interests and needs of the department, and are agreed upon by the mutual consent of the intern candidate and his or her supervisor.
Office of the Director
Office of Collections Information and Research
Office of Design and Production
Graphic Design Staff
Lighting Design Staff
Office of Advancement
Office of Communications
Office of Education
Intern and Docent Programs
Youth and Family Programs
Office of Exhibitions
Office of the Registrar
Department of History
Web and Digital Media
Latino History and Culture
Department of Painting and Sculpture
Department of Photographs
Department of Prints and Drawings
Please be aware that complete applications must include the following:
- Internship program application form
- Academic transcripts (unofficial are acceptable)
- Personal essay (use this to tell us how the internship will advance your academic/career goals)
- Two letters of reference
Applications for fall, winter, and spring internships are accepted on an ongoing basis. The length of time that an applicant is available as an intern is a consideration in the evaluation of applications. Interns are encouraged to have health insurance.
Essential Tips for the Online Application
- Do NOT submit your application until all necessary components are uploaded (i.e., transcripts, personal essay, resume). Once these are submitted, you cannot upload anything else or change anything within the application.
- Upload your documents as a .pdf or .jpeg file. Other file formats will upload, but may not hold your formatting commands.
- An unofficial or official transcript can be uploaded by first scanning the document and saving it as a pdf or jpeg.
- Make sure that you click the “send e-mail” button. This triggers the system to e-mail your references with instructions to them for uploading the reference letter. Please advise your references of this in advance.
The Smithsonian does not award college credit, but many U.S. colleges and universities will recognize academic work performed while interning. Contact your academic adviser for instructions on how to receive credit.
Most NPG internships are unpaid volunteer positions. Some funded internships are available on a competitive basis through the Office of Fellowships (202-633-7070).
If you have any questions about the application process, please send inquiries to npgInterns@si.edu. If you have questions concerning the SOLAA application, please go to the Help section on the SOLAA Web site.
The mission of the National Portrait Gallery is to tell the story of America by portraying the people who shape the nation’s history, development and culture.
National Portrait Gallery
Eighth and F Streets NW
Washington, D.C. 20001