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Internships at the Newberry

If you’re drawn to inner workings of the Newberry, or simply want to gain incredible work experience, you have the opportunity to work behind the scenes at one of the departments in the library throughout the semester.

These are paid positions and are limited to 10 hours per week maximum, so as not to interfere with seminar and research time. Each supervisor has agreed to be flexible with the number of hours and days of the week students work, and understands that frequently ACM students can work more hours earlier in the semester, but may taper when their independent research becomes more pressing.

Positions available vary, but the list below is illustrative of the variety of positions typically available for Newberry Seminar participants. For more information, contact Michael Vertovec, ACM Off-Campus Study Program Coordinator.

“I work in the General Reading Room at the Newberry Library, which basically means that I page books (grab books from the stacks) for people who request them. It’s actually a lot busier than it sounds — a lot of people use the library, and they page a ton of books, so it’s been a lot of wandering around the stacks so far. Which, of course, I love — I’m one of three students on my program who has access to ten floors of books!”
Karlyn Schumacher, Ripon College, reflecting on her paid internship in the General Reading Room

Internship Positions

These positions vary year to year; a current list of positions will be available for Newberry Seminar participants at the beginning of each program semester.

Conservation Lab

Learn how the Newberry preserves its many amazing collections in the Conservation Lab. The assistant will work with Conservation Staff by performing a range of tasks for the Lab. Projects may include organizing historical conservation departmental files for transition to the archives, categorizing historical letterpress type, inspections of incoming collections, and some basic hands-on conservation and preservation activities. The perfect candidate will have strong organizational skills and an excellent attention to detail.

D'Arcy McNickle Center for American Indian and Indigenous Studies

The assistant will help organize archival files, preparing center files for institutional archiving, assist with seminars and other programming administration, and gain some knowledge about the research center. Working knowledge of MS Excel and Access required. Duties may also include clerical work, data entry, and AV delivery/setup. Interest in history and American Indian studies and bibliographic programs desirable.

Digital Imaging Services

Assist the manager with various tasks associated with administering the Digital Imaging Services department, including data entry, filing, record keeping, and other tasks as needed. You will have a chance to learn how collection materials are photographed, how the digital images are stored, and get a sense of the range of digital imaging services the library provides.


Do you love planning? Are you wondering how that last fundraiser came together so flawlessly? Join us in the busy Events Office and learn what it takes to plan and organize events of all kinds, from in-house lectures, public programs, public tours, and rental events. The assistant will work with Newberry Staff on a variety of tasks including event preparation, room set-ups, phone inquiries, showing spaces for rental, assisting with public tours, organizing inventories, volunteer management, following up with clients/vendors, and execution of special events (early evenings and Saturday afternoons). Experience working with people can be helpful, but is not required. At the end of your term, you will be an expert in Events!


The assistant will help monitor and maintain the Newberry Galleries during exhibitions.

General Reading Room

The assistant will provide public service in the General Reading Room, including circulation, photoduplication, and book storage while maintaining the security and preservation of the collections. Responsibilites include: retrieving materials from the bookstacks, delivering materials throughout the building, photocopying library materials, and other projects as appropriate. It is important that the person who fills this job have an excellent attention to detail and a public service orientation.

Public Programs

The Public Programs department is in the midst of a project to organize and digitize its historical records on past programs for archival purposes. The assistant will assist with selecting and organizing records, keeping a running list of programs, speakers, and other information by year, and scanning materials.

Office of Research and Academic Programs

The Office of Research and Academic Programs is the hub of scholarly activity here at the Newberry and we’re looking for some energetic individuals to get in the middle of things! These students will assist with running the Fellowships Program, Undergraduate Seminars Program, and Scholar-in-Residence Program. Responsibilities may include (but are not limited to): coordinating events such as colloquia, seminars, publicity for various R&A programs, archival research, data entry and management, web design, public programming, digital scanning and database fun. We have many diverse tasks and can mold parts of the job to fit your interests and skills.

Dr. William M. Scholl Center for American History and Culture

The magic of research happens when scholars gather, discuss and debate! Assist the Scholl Center for American History and Culture in the logistics of operating a series of 10 year-long seminars. Duties will include data entry and mailing list management, assisting with promotion of seminars and larger public programs, and contributing to a broader social media presence. Some familiarity with American History desirable.

Special Collections Reading Room

Reporting to the Special Collections Services Librarian, the assistant will help with the public service work of the Special Collections Reading room, including circulation, photoduplication, and book storage, as well as maintaining the security and preservation of the collections. Responsibilities include: retrieving materials from the bookstacks, delivering materials throughout the building, and photocopying library materials. It is important that the person who fills this job have an excellent attention to detail and a public service orientation.