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Jobs, Internships & Research

Opportunities at Smithsonian Folkways


We are not currently accepting applications for any positions.


An internship with Smithsonian Folkways Recordings offers a wide range of valuable and meaningful experiences in the recording industry and non-profit arts administration, within the context of the world’s largest museum complex. Specific learning opportunities include graphic design, music marketing, royalty administration, cataloging and research, and educational content creation. Interns are expected to work for at least 100 hours, and ideally no less than 10 hours/week. Some specific internships may require longer commitment to ensure a successful experience, both for the intern and for Folkways. In addition to honing specific skills, interns will meet regularly with their supervisors, work with other interns and other staff on team projects, and have access to a wide array of programming, as well as curatorial and professional experts across the institution. For information on specific internships available, please see below.

To apply, visit SOLAA and create an account. After selecting Internship, specify the Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage (please indicate the name of the specific internship in your essay.) You will be required to upload supporting materials, including an essay, resume, transcripts, and letters of recommendation.

The submission deadline for summer internships with Smithsonian Folkways is March 1. There are no deadlines for submitting applications for other seasons.

The completed application is to be submitted at least six weeks before the start of the internship.

If you have questions, please contact our intern coordinator Arlene Reiniger.

Available Internships
Online Music Education Internship

Accepting applications for Fall 2024
Mentor: Logan Clark
Type: Unpaid

Description: Smithsonian Folkways is in the process of launching an online music education platform responding to rapidly changing educational realities by providing customizable, technologically integrative experiences that enable engagement on multiple levels of the traditional-to-online classroom continuum. We are looking for interns to assist with making Learning Pathway lessons ready for launch. The work includes slideshow design, researching ownership and securing permissions for media used in the Lessons, communicating with pathway curators, copy editing, and other tasks as assigned. This is a good internship for those interested in music education, applied ethnomusicology, music licensing, and non-profit administration. Current Pathways: Women in the Blues, Music of Puerto Rico, Asian and Pacific Islander American Music, Sounds of the Civil Rights Movement, Music of the Asian Courts.

Length: At least 2 months, preferably 10 hrs / week or more
Location: In person or remote
Experience: Must be detail oriented, possess highly developed communication skills for communicating with scholars and artists regularly. Knowledge of current Pathway topics is a plus, but not necessary.

Marketing Internship

Accepting applications for Winter 2025
Mentor: Jonathan Williger
Type: Paid, college credit

Description: Smithsonian Folkways is looking for enthusiastic marketing interns who are ready to learn the many skills of positioning new culturally and historically significant recordings in an ever-changing digital and physical marketplace. The intern will help write copy to accompany our content on social media and our website, assist in maintaining a marketing calendar, positioning our extensive catalog on DSPs, gathering relevant information for new releases essential in crafting marketing plans, and other tasks as assigned.

Length: 3 months, 24 hr/week minimum
Location: Virtual
Experience: Must be detail oriented, with good writing and communication skills. Must have a passion for music and media, and experience with social media, graphic design, editorial, college radio a plus. Ideal applicants are voracious listeners across many genres and styles, and spend much of their free time scouring the internet for new music and are familiar with Bandcamp, Spotify, and other new music discovery tools.

Web & IT Production Internship

Accepting applications year-round
Mentor: Toby Dodds
Type: Experiential, college credit

Description: The Smithsonian Folkways Web & IT Production Intern will assist Smithsonian Folkways' Director of Web & IT with day-to-day operations related to the management of our website and digital collections. These duties may include scanning archival documents, encoding audio and video, entering metadata, and contributing written content to our web site. Interns will gain hands on experience working in the realm of library science and web production. Additionally scholars interested in the fields of anthropology, ethnomusicology, American studies, history, and folklore will enjoy spending time with our collection and will be exposed to many unique topics and ideas. Skills gained in the areas of web and IT production are invaluable to future scholars, writers, educators, archivists and web site managers as they embark on their careers.

Length: 3 months, part-time to full-time
Location: Virtual
Experience: The ideal candidate will be passionate about music and have some prior experience with web publishing or work in an archival setting.

Mentorship Program for a More Diverse Workplace

Type: Paid Internship

Description: We encourage women of color, an underrepresented population at the Smithsonian, to apply for this opportunity to explore and discover cultural heritage and the role it plays in identity, family, and community. At Folkways, this Mentorship can be used with one of the above opportunities. In your application, please indicate that you are applying for the Diversity Mentorship Program and list the name of the Folkways internships (from those listed above) for which you'd like to be considered.

Length: 100 hours
Location: Virtual

Click here for more information about the Mentorship Program.


The Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archives and Collections are open to visitors and researchers by appointment. To contact the Archives or schedule an appointment, please contact Ceci Peterson at or call 202.633.7931.