NASM Summer Internships

Posted on Nov 17, 2014
Conservation intern working on a helmet

Conservation intern working on a helmet

National Air and Space Museum: Conservation Internship

Project Title: Conservation Triage Project: Conservation Internship, Summer 2015
Location: Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Emil Buehler Conservation Laboratory, Virginia
Duration: 12 weeks (May to August 2015 time frame)
Amount: $8000

Project Description: Two conservation interns are requested to assist the NASM Conservation unit with examination, documentation, triage treatment and rehousing of objects in the NASM collection.

The interns will work with NASM conservators and contract conservators as part of a project team.  Object types are widely varied and include the full range of materials relating to the history of aviation and space exploration. The interns will work in the Emil Buehler Conservation Laboratory at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia. Interns must have a car in order to work at the Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia.

Learning Objectives Include:
1. To assist NASM conservators and contract conservators with the examination, photo-documentation and triage treatment of objects as part of a larger on-going project at NASM to stop deterioration of objects in need of immediate conservation. Stabilization of active corrosion, mitigation of deterioration products, physical stabilization and removal of harmful accretions or particulates are common triage treatments.
2. Increase skills in the identification of materials and objects related to the aeronautics and space history collections at NASM.
3. Perform tasks on a team project and learn how to prioritize treatment needs, meet deadlines and develop conservation practices on a large numbers of objects.
4. Utilize analytical equipment to answer material and treatment questions related to objects in the collection. The laboratory is equipped with a Portable XRF, Portable FTIR and 3-d Hirox microscope.

The NASM conservation unit is seeking graduate conservation students from a conservation training program- or a pre-program intern with an undergraduate degree and at least 1000 hours of work in the conservation field. Undergraduate majors may include art, art history, history, chemistry, museums, historic preservation or archaeology. Pre-program interns must have two years of college-level chemistry education.

The interns will work closely with NASM conservation staff to perform day to day duties in the conservation laboratory in Chantilly, Virginia. The interns will perform artifact examinations, condition reporting, documentation and triage treatments of assigned objects in the laboratory relating to a conservation triage project. The interns will be able to utilize analytical equipment in the laboratory to perform materials analysis. They will assist NASM staff with other duties as necessary related to the project, such as collaboration with curators, museum staff and project team members.

With staff approval, the intern may initiate research on a specific material as part of the project, or investigate a treatment methodology in relation to on-going work in the laboratory. This research can take up to 20% of the intern’s time. A poster presentation and documentation on the research should be produced at the end of the internship.

Preferred graduate level training in a conservation training program. Skills in materials science, conservation treatment, chemistry or related subjects in addition to digital photography and technical writing. Attention to detail. The intern should be self-motivated, willing to work independently as well as in a team and should be capable of managing multiple projects, deadlines and tasks.

Please submit resume, three professional references and a letter of interest by December 31, 2015 to:
Lisa Young, Objects Conservator
Smithsonian National Air Space Museum
youngla@si.edu