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Laird Museum Studies Internship

The Emily A. Laird Internship in Museum Studies for Summer 2019

The Newport Restoration Foundation (NRF) is accepting applications for its 2019 summer internship for students in museum studies, public history and humanities, art history, and related fields. Interns will learn and work in a team-based, collaborative environment and play a crucial role in advancing one or more areas of NRF’s mission. Interns will be based at Rough Point, an NRF property open to the public as a house museum.

This year, NRF is seeking two interns for summer 2019. Interns will work with departmental staff and devote approximately half their time to training, participation in daily operations, and general internship assignments. The remainder of their time will be devoted to independent work on a substantive project, to be developed in consultation with their supervisor. Successful interns will possess exceptional interpersonal skills, an enthusiasm for making art and history accessible to the public, intellectual curiosity, and good humor.

NRF works in three key areas:

  • Creating memorable experiences for onsite and virtual audiences that celebrate the breadth of Doris Duke’s cultural and intellectual curiosity, her expansive worldview, and her passion for beauty and place
  • Preserving, researching, and interpreting Doris Duke’s collections of fine and decorative arts
  • Preserving, promoting, and investing in the architectural heritage of the Newport community

The interns will work across departmental lines in support of these efforts and can expect to spend time interacting with the public, as well as contributing to general museum business. Specific to the 2019 internship is the likelihood of working on interpretation, evaluation, programming, and collections research at Rough Point and/or Whitehorne House Museum.


Interns work a minimum of 35 hours per week at a rate of $14.50/hour. Some weekend and evening hours are required. Holidays and other time off are not paid. The 10 week internship typically begins the first week of June and ends in late August, with exact dates to be determined at time of offer. Applicants must be authorized to work in the U.S.


Applicants must be rising college seniors, graduate students, or those having attained an undergraduate or graduate degree within 12 months of the start of the internship.

A complete application consists of:

  1. A short personal statement (700-800 words maximum) that outlines internship goals and a specific professional or research interest in one or more of NRF’s areas of operations;
  2. A resume of no more than two pages;
  3. Contact information for three references.

Please send all materials in a single PDF to Kelsey Mullen, Public Programs Manager, at

NRF is an equal opportunity employer.

Closing date is February 19, 2019; applicants will be notified by mid-March.

About the Newport Restoration Foundation

NRF is a non-profit organization founded in 1968 by Doris Duke to promote and invest in the architectural heritage of the Newport community, the traditional building trades, and Doris Duke’s fine and decorative arts collections, for the enjoyment, education and inspiration of all. In addition to a collection of more than 70 early American houses, now rented to tenant-stewards, NRF operates three museum properties that are open to the public: Rough Point, Doris Duke’s Newport mansion and home to a significant collection of European paintings, furniture, and textiles, and other European and Asian decorative arts; Whitehorne House Museum, featuring a collection of 18th- and early 19th-century Newport furniture; and Prescott Farm, a public park and historic site with ties to the Revolutionary War. NRF is actively engaged in historic preservation, community engagement, and scholarly research.

Emily A. Laird was an M.A. student in museum studies at the Cooperstown Graduate Program, Cooperstown, N.Y. when she came to Newport as a Newport Restoration Foundation collections intern in 2011. During her time at the NRF, Emily displayed a passion for scholarship, dedication to her work, and a keen interest in her museum colleagues, the local community, and the unique qualities of Newport and environs. She worked closely with staff and had made an excellent start on her individual project before falling critically ill in mid-summer. She died on September 29, 2011.

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