The Archives of American Gardens internship will be offered virtually for summer of 2024.


The Archives of American Gardens internship provides opportunities to perform various archival collections management tasks including cataloging and digitization. This experience will help interns gain practical experience in preparing archival collections for research access. Assignments focus on cataloging garden files and images by describing their content according to recognized data standards, digital asset management, assisting with basic research and reference duties, and developing a range of outreach materials. Depending on which projects may be available, interns may also have an opportunity to develop finding aids. Knowledge of and/or experience with archival practices is preferred. Accuracy, attention to detail, and good writing skills are required.


The Smithsonian’s Archives of American Gardens, an archival program managed by the Collections, Education, and Access branch of Smithsonian Gardens, seeks interns to assist with the following projects:

  • Digital asset management of born digital or newly digitized materials
  • Catalog photographic materials including new submissions to The Garden Club of America Collection
  • Research and write on garden history and design topics to develop succinct reports for Garden Club of America field volunteers.
  • Develop content for Smithsonian Gardens’ social media platforms to promote holdings of the Archives.
  • Create Excel to EAD spreadsheets for import into ArchivesSpace, linking digital objects and subject cataloging for digitized series or items in EAD finding aids
  • Special projects as they arise (i.e. reviewing transcribed materials in the Smithsonian’s Transcription Center; creation of Learning Lab collections; exhibit development)
  • Optional: In-person archival processing, inventory, and/or performing basic preservation practices at Archives of American Gardens headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Desired Qualifications

  • Graduate degree candidate in museum studies, public history, or library/information science
  • A very high attention to detail and excellent organizational skills
  • Excellent writing abilities and communication skills
  • Previous experience working with photographic or visual materials preferred
  • Ability to work well independently and with others


  • Processing and describing photographic collections
  • Image management and structured data
  • Use of social media for outreach and education
  • Gaining hands-on experience using the following software programs: ArchivesSpace, Adobe Bridge/Photoshop, Open Text/Digital Asset Management system
  • Art history, history of photography, garden or landscape studies


$6,000 for a 10 week full-time internship. Stipend available through The Garden Club of America.


Requirements for applying to the Smithsonian Gardens intern program:

  • Online application
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • College transcript(s)
  • Essay describing background, interest in field, and career goals


Completed application, essay, academic records, and two letters of recommendation should be submitted online through the Smithsonian Online Academic Appointment System.