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University of Kansas AAMD Summer Intern in Lawrence, Kansas


Job Title:

AAMD Summer Intern


Spencer Museum of Art

Primary Campus:

University of Kansas Lawrence Campus

Job Description:

Community Collaboration 60%

  • Collaborate with Curator Pursel and the Native advisors on research and planning to:

  • Identify designers, models, personnel, and vendors for the fashion show.

  • Develop themes, object selection, write and edit labels for the exhibition.

  • Assist with interpretive materials and potential programming.

  • Train advisors to navigate the Museum’s collections database.

  • Work with the collections team to provide collections tours and pull items of interest for advisors and community members.

  • Work with the Indigenous community to conduct research, interview, and gather stories to drive interpretation of objects in the collection and exhibition.

  • Participate in outreach to the local Indigenous community, including KU and Haskell students, and identify local community organizations and people to partner with on the project.

  • Work with and support contemporary Indigenous artists and designers.

Museum Administration and Research 35%

  • Shadowing Museum leadership, including Director Saralyn Reece Hardy and Friends of the Art Museum Chair Dr. Dee Ann DeRoin.

  • Assist in developing and submitting grant proposal(s).

  • Conduct research on the Museum collections.

  • Learn about Indigenous works of art on display and assist with tours.

  • Attend relevant events on campus and in the community.

  • Assist other museum leadership and staff on special projects and learning opportunities.

Professional Development 5%

  • Attend the American Alliance of Museums conference taking place May 19-22 in Denver.

  • Attend one additional conference or professional development opportunity.

Req ID (Ex: 10567BR) :



The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression, and genetic information in the university's programs and activities. Retaliation is also prohibited by university policy. The following persons have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies and are the Title IX coordinators for their respective campuses: Executive Director of the Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access, IOA@ku.edu, 1246 West Campus Road, Room 153A, Lawrence, KS 66045, 785-864-6414, 711 TTY 9for the Lawrence, Edwards, Parsons, Yoder, and Topeka campuses); Director, Equal Opportunity Office, Mail Stop 7004, 4330 Shawnee Mission Parkway, Fairway, KS 66205, 913-588-8011, 711 TTY (for the Wichita, Salina, and Kansas City, Kansas medical center campuses).

Work Schedule:

35 hours per week. Schedule to be determined by supervisor.

FLSA Status:


Contact Information to Applicants:

Sydney Pursel, sydneypursel@ku.edu

Required Qualifications:

  1. Undergraduate student at any area college or university entering their sophomore, junior, or senior year (or graduating in May 2023).

  2. Strong spoken and written communication, as evidenced by application materials and interview.

  3. Experience working with Indigenous people, especially in collaborative settings.

  4. Knowledge of Native American history and culture, as evidenced by coursework, readings, or lectures.

Employee Class:

U-Unclassified Professional Staff

Advertised Salary Range:

$16.00 per hour



Preferred Qualifications:

  1. Tribally enrolled citizen or demonstrated Indigenous heritage.

  2. Experience with object-based teaching and learning and Indigenous culture, fashion, or regalia.

  3. Experience working both independently and in collaboration with museum staff, students, artists, designers, and Indigenous community members on a team-driven project.

  4. Experience with relational databases, especially as used for museum collections.

  5. Availability to work occasional evenings and weekends, if needed.

Position Overview:

Supported by the Association of Art Museum Directors (AAMD), this 12-week summer internship will offer one undergraduate student the opportunity to work alongside Curator for Public Practice Sydney Pursel on research and planning for an Indigenous fashion show and corresponding exhibition at the Spencer Museum of Art. The intern will meet with a selected team of Indigenous advisors to shape the direction of the project to ensure Indigenous voices and input are included. Their work will be highly collaborative, aiming to foster a sense of belonging across communities.

The intern will have the opportunity to help shape exhibition themes, identify local and national designers, conduct interviews with Indigenous community members, and engage in collections research. In addition to working on the fashion show exhibition and related programming, the intern will participate in a full range of professional staff activities and assist with a variety of departmental duties to gain a broad understanding of museum operations. They will also spend time shadowing Saralyn Reece Hardy, Marilyn Stokstad Director, and Dr. Dee Ann DeRoin, Friends of the Art Museum Board Chair, to learn about and participate in leadership activities. As part of the internship, the AAMD intern will take part in the American Alliance of Museums annual conference in Denver from May 19-22. (All expenses for this trip will be covered by the Museum and AAMD.) The intern may also have the opportunity for other professional development travel during or immediately following the internship.



Application Review Begins:


Anticipated Start Date:


Additional Candidate Instruction:

A complete online application includes:

  1. Cover letter addressing how you meet the required and preferred qualifications.

  2. Resume.

  3. Contact information for three professional references (including at least one previous or current supervisor).

Application review begins, Monday, March 20, 2023 and continues until a pool of qualified applicants is identified.

Work Location Assignment:


Position Requirements:

  1. This position requires working on-site.

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