The Museum of Arts and Design has a long-standing history of supporting internships that provide meaningful, engaging and project-based opportunities for undergraduate and graduate level students throughout the year.  These positions are available in several departments and allow the participants to gain invaluable work experience at a non-profit visual arts organization as they prepare to continue their studies, pursue careers in the arts, or apply their experience to other fields.

General Requirements

All applicants must:

  • Attend an institution of learning with courses leading to a degree, certificate or diploma
  • Applicants are eligible during periods when school is not in session, if:
    • Applicants were students the previous semester
    • Applicants have not yet graduated or completed educational requirements of the program
    • Applicants have graduated, but are starting a new academic program within six months
  • Be a US citizen or completing residence requirements for a degree such as those required of medical or pharmaceutical students

Internship Sessions

SUMMER: Start week of June 1


Education Department: ARTS Intern (Interpretive Programs)

The ARTS Internship is a partnership with the Museum and Studio in a School.  ARTS Intern places college undergraduates from diverse cultural backgrounds in paid summer internships at New York City museums.  Eligible applicants must show a financial need and must either be New York City residents, or be enrolled in a college or university within the five boroughs of New York City. 

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The ARTS Intern Program runs for 9-weeks: June 8th – August 7th, 2015 with Interns working five days a week (35 hours).  ARTS Interns must complete all 9-weeks of the session (no exceptions).  Former ARTS Interns are not eligible for the program.  The compensation for the program is $3,300. For a full list of requirements please visit the ARTS Intern website: http://www.artsintern.org/how-to-apply.html

Key responsibilities:

Visitor Studies and Audience Research:

  • Conducting interviews, collecting surveys, participating in observations, and potentially coordinating focus groups and museum site visits
  • Preparation of preliminary reports and presentation materials in regards to emerging trends and data collection
  • Research current trends in visitor studies, assess effectiveness of current evaluative methods and tools, and revise or generate new methods as necessary with the Manager of Interpretation

Interpretive Tools Preparation:

  • Assist in the development of selected interpretive tools that may include: audio guides, in-gallery brochures, in-gallery didactics, training materials for docents and artist educators, and online materials
  • Review goals for interpretive tools and gather research about improving tools including: gathering materials from other museums, evaluating museum’s current tools, and helping to revise existing style guides and interpretive plans

Outreach and Administration:

  • Preparing basic outreach materials: contact lists, school and community group lists, targeted E-blast materials, and selected promotional materials
  • Processing group requests such as: preparing invoices, assigning groups to the museum calendar, and taking payments
  • Assisting in basic administrative functions such as drafting letters of agreement, categorizing research materials, creating excel spreadsheets, etc.


  • Detail-oriented and highly organized
  • Punctual and confident speaking to strangers and colleagues
  • Comfortable conducting research and generating reports; strong writing skills
  • Able to work independently and with peers
  • Experience working with people of diverse backgrounds and skill levels
  • Some knowledge or experience in visitor studies, sociology, or research methods
  • Some knowledge or experience teaching or with educational theory and pedagogy
  • Interest in learning more about museum administration: both creative and administrative tasks
  • Interest in studio art and art history, especially in the fields of craft and design

To apply for this internship please send the following to carli.beseau@madmuseum.org with the subject line  “ARTS Intern”: a) a cover letter describing your interest in the arts and this position in particular; b) a resume detailing your work, education and volunteer experience; c) a 2014-2015 SAR form; d) a copy of your most recent transcript (unofficial); and e) two references (one professional and one academic).  For a detailed description of these requirements please visit: http://www.artsintern.org/how-to-apply.html

The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.


Curatorial Department: Library Intern

This internship is dedicated to creating a small, specialized research library that will support the immediate needs of curatorial staff and visiting researchers at the Museum of Arts and Design. At the core of any museum is its exhibition program. In order to curate the most successful exhibitions a great deal of research is needed. MAD is in need of a library to support this research, as well as its position as the preeminent craft museum in the US. The intention of this library is to provide essential resources that reflect new and growing scholarly literature on craft history and theory, including books, periodicals, online resources, and important exhibition catalogs, focusing on craft and contemporary art.

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The Library Intern will evaluate and create an updated library that is fully functional for use by MAD curators and researchers. The intern will be responsible for:

  • Evaluating the current library’s holdings, identifying key missing texts, and deaccessioning material not pertinent to a craft research library
  • After evaluating the current library holdings, the intern will create a proposal for a cataloging system, relevant to a small museum library, such as LibraryThing or another program to be identified
  • The intern will complete the project by adding the new books and resources to the library and cataloging in full
  • Other archiving related responsibilities may include: helping to maintain the artist and exhibition files

An internship supporting the creation of a small, specialized research library with an emphasis on new studies and other contemporary resources in craft history and theory is a unique and rare opportunity for students of library science and/or the history of craft, decorative arts, or design. The internship will provide hands-on experience in the field of bibliographic research, library cataloging, and project management essential to careers in library science, exhibition curating, and collections management.


The Library Intern should be a graduate student obtaining a master’s degree in library science (preferably library science with a focus on art museum libraries), the history of craft, the decorative arts and/or design, archival studies, or a related field. Knowledge of art from the post war period to the present is required. The intern must be able to receive academic credit as a matriculated graduate student for this internship, and must be available 2-3 days per week. (S)he must be a self-motivated critical thinker able to work independently, as well as maintain high levels of organization.

To apply for this internship please send (1) a cover letter outlining your interests and relevant qualifications for this position, (2) a resume, and (3) 2-3 references to Samantha De Tillio at samantha.detillio@madmuseum.org with “Library Intern” in the subject line. Please also outline your academic needs for obtaining credit, for instance number of hours fulfilled, etc., as well as your availability (days of the week, number of days per week).

The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.


Education Department: Interpretive Programs Intern

Interpretive programs and materials help deepen visitors understanding and relationship with objects on view. These include such things as audio guides and gallery brochures, but also the preparation of gallery guides and special programs associated with exhibitions. Additionally, interpretation has a strong visitor experience component that considers closely visitor expectation, behavior and experience.

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Interpretive programs are also concerned with providing consistency in interpretive offerings, consistency in institutional voice, maintaining a strong understanding of educational theory and pedagogy, and translating curatorial content into tangible tools and programs that enrich the visitors experience. Interns reporting to the Manager of Interpretation will:

  • Conduct research related to exhibitions and help to translate artist statements and contextual information into usable resources for gallery guides such as docents and artist educators
  • Gather analytical information about visitor experience, behavior and engagement in exhibitions such as observations and short interviews
  • Review interpretative materials and provide feedback; research interpretive tools at other institutions
  • Participate in training opportunities to deepen knowledge and understanding of museum education, including: docent and educator training sessions, doing gallery worksheets and conducting program observations
  • Prepare reports, summaries and excel worksheets that will help the museum improve the quality of their interpretive tools
  • Assist with administrative responsibilities associated with interpretative programs
  • Must be available 2-3 days a week

To apply for this internship please send a cover letter, writing sample and resume to carli.beseau@madmuseum.org with “Education and Interpretation Intern” in the subject line. Cover letters should outline specific interest in this internship, along with qualifications and skills indicative of a strong candidateship for this opportunity. Writing samples should be no longer than five pages and be representative of skills as a researcher, communicator and translator of ideas into concise, meaningful content. Please also include availability (semester or a full academic year internship).

The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.


Education Department: School and Teacher Programs: Arts Reach (off-site, in-school)

TheArts Reachprogramallows MAD’s education department and its teaching artists to extend their reach to middle and high school students at the Manhattan Alternate Learning Centers and the Bronx Alternate Learning Centers. This partnership provides the opportunity for students who are in severe danger of being left behind to learn about arts & design through museum visits and in-class hands-on projects. The primary goals are to provide a positive and nurturing environment where critical thinking and creative problem solving is encouraged.

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As this program runs off-site at participating schools, the internship sessions are different from the museum itself. Below are the truncated sessions. All applicants MUST be available the entire three months of this internship.

FALL SESSION: October – December

WINTER SESSION: January – March


Reporting to the Manger of School and Teacher Programs, interns will:

Assist MAD Teaching Artists with hands-on projects both at the museum and in the classroom

  • Collaborate with Teaching Artist on lessons/ workshops
  • Lead inquiry-based discussions
  • Help prepare all materials needed for hands-on projects
  • Participate in planning meetings
  • Time commitment: 1 hour classes—twice a week, on-site at the school

To apply for this internship, please send a cover letter, resume and 2-3 references to artsreach@madmuseum.org with “Arts Reach Program Intern- Fall (or Winter, or Spring)” in the subject line. No prior teaching experience needed, although previous experience with youth/students is a plus. The ideal candidate will be available to travel throughout Manhattan and/or the Bronx.

No phone calls please. The Museum of Arts and Design (MAD) is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.