Employment Opportunities

Founded in 1863, BHS is a nationally recognized urban history center comprised of a museum, scholarly research library, and education center dedicated to preserving and encouraging the study of Brooklyn's extraordinary 400-year history. The mission of the Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS) is to connect the past to the present and make the vibrant history of Brooklyn tangible, relevant, and meaningful for today’s diverse communities and for generations to come.

Brooklyn Historical Society is an Equal Opportunity employer. Diversity and equity are core values of the institution.

Our work is strengthened by the wide range of perspectives, positionalities, skills and experiences of our present and future staff. We are dedicated to a policy of non-discrimination in employment on any basis including race, color, age, sex, religion, national origin, the presence of any mental, physical, or sensory disability, sexual orientation, or any other basis prohibited by federal or state law.

Full-time & Part-time Positions
    - Oral History Project Archivist
    - Press and Programs Associate
    - Translator of Public History Project Text Materials, Muslims in Brooklyn
    - Historian and Project Manager, Revealing Long Island History
    - Visitor Services and Events Associate (Part-Time)
Internships
Volunteer Opportunities

Full-time & Part-time Positions

Oral History Project Archivist

Brooklyn Historical Society seeks an Oral History Project Archivist to process and describe a new oral history collection of roughly 50 interviews. Reporting to the Managing Director of Library & Archives and working closely with the Oral Historian, the successful candidate will be responsible for processing and describing the Muslims in Brooklyn oral history collection according to established project procedures and best practices for in-house and online access.

Muslims in Brooklyn is a two-year, public history project to amplify stories of Brooklyn’s diverse Muslim communities. For well over a century, Muslims have lived, worked, and prayed in Brooklyn, making it a major center of Muslim life for NYC and the nation. As such, the histories and experiences of Brooklyn’s Muslim communities hold great resonance for national conversations on religious diversity and pluralism. Over the course of this project, BHS will produce the following: a collection of oral histories and primary source records, a web-based educational curriculum, Educational programs, an arts-focused exhibition, dynamic public programming, dedicated segments in BHS’s Flatbush + Main podcast series, and a comprehensive publication. Together, these elements will provide learning experiences, challenge assumptions, and promote understanding about Brooklyn's rich ethnic and religious heritage.

Using ArchivesSpace to create EAD finding aids according the standards set forth in BHS’s oral history and archival processing manuals, the Archivist will be responsible for exporting that descriptive record from ASpace to BHS’s online oral history portal. Each interview will be described at the interview-level within ASpace using archival standards for description and subject access, and synced using the Oral History Metadata Synchronizer (OHMS). The archivist will also be responsible for updating and maintaining procedures and policies; and additional responsibilities may include supervising of two oral history interns, and supporting reference services during the library’s open hours, including at least 1 Saturday per quarter

Responsibilities:

• Audit audio recordings and review transcripts.
• Complete synchronization of audio recordings to transcripts/indices using Oral History Metadata Synchronizer (OHMS) tool.
• Create a finding aid and publish to NYU Finding Aid Portal.
• Manipulate item-level catalog records in order to import into Oral History Portal.

Qualifications:

• Masters in Library and Information Science, or equivalent degree, with a specialization in archival studies and audio/visual materials.
• Previous experience working with CMS and ILS systems; familiarity with WordPress content management systems; experience specifically with ArchivesSpace.
• Familiarity with MARC and EAD; AACR2 and DACS; and with the use and application of standardized vocabularies.
• Experience working with digital assets, specifically audio and video.
• Familiarity with new archival and digital humanities technology such as OHMS.
• Ability to work in library stacks in cold temperatures (60-65 degrees Fahrenheit) for up to an eight-hour workday, three days a week.
• Strong organization and time-management skills; attention to accuracy and detail is essential.
• Effective oral and written communication skills.
• Ability to work both independently and as part of a team, and to ensure that work is accomplished in a timely and accurate manner

Preferred Qualifications:

• 2-3 years post-MLS archival processing and description experience, including an understanding of pragmatic and efficient processing procedures.
• Familiarity and/or interest in histories of Brooklyn neighborhoods, New York City, and / or the histories of Muslims in Brooklyn.
• Knowledge of oral history best practices; familiarity with OHMS.

Compensation

Dependent upon qualifications and experience. Position is a 5-month, grant-funded, part-time position (29 hours/week @ $25/hour).

To Apply:

Please email a cover letter, resume, and salary requirement to library@brooklynhistory.org with a subject line of "Oral History Processing Archivist [last name]". Applications will be reviewed immediately. No phone calls please.

Posting Date:  

May 18, 2018

Brooklyn Historical Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Click here to read our statement about our committment to hiring equality.


Press and Programs Associate

The Communications and Public Programming Department is seeking an energetic, outgoing individual who will be responsible for maintaining and increasing the institution’s external visibility by creatively driving placements of stories and listings in media outlets across platforms (print, online, radio, TV) and spearheading cross promotions. In addition, this person will be part of the departmental team that conceives of and develops BHS’s robust series of public programming. He/she/they (they) will also assist in administering production of collateral print materials and assist in other department writing. This is a full-time staff position.

The Press and Programs Associate is the lead press contact for Brooklyn Historical Society. As such they are charged with bringing press recognition to the many areas of the institution, establishing and stewarding dozens of relationships with editors, reporters, and other media contacts, developing communication strategies that reach a diversity of audiences, and thinking strategically about BHS’s presentation with an eye towards short and long-term coverage. In addition, this position will cultivate and oversee program cross promotional opportunities with other cultural institutions.

As part of the public programming team, this position will develop and produce public programs of interest to audiences that represent Brooklyn’s multigenerational, multiracial, and multicultural communities. This position will spend approximately 75% of the time on press and public relations and 25% on programming and miscellaneous other duties.

The position reports to the Vice-President of Programs and External Affairs.

Responsibilities:

Press duties include:
• Planning press campaigns large and small ranging from major exhibition openings, to ‘soft’ stories with long-lead times
• Drafting descriptive, engaging press releases and media alerts that promote BHS programs, exhibits and other initiatives
• Devising fresh and interesting stories and persuasive pitches, and strategically aligning story pitches to appropriate local, national, and trade media/journalists
• Working closely with department colleagues to coordinate brand identity and its presentation across print and digital platforms (social media, website, blog posts,
collateral materials, ads)
• Working closely and collaboratively with BHS education, public history, exhibitions, development and other departments to place and coordinate press coverage in the form of feature articles, exhibition reviews, program listings, local TV news segments
• Accurately, meticulously and consistently updating press-related databases including contact lists and a master database of media coverage; and delivering regular reports on press coverage
• Overseeing placement of exhibitions and public programs in listing outlets
• Cultivating and maintaining relationships with members of the press including reporters, editors, and bloggers, and understanding individual reporters’ beats (family blogs, reviewers, culture reporters, education reporters, etc.)
• Creating targeted press lists for various markets and audiences that reflect BHS’s goal to reach and engage communities representing a multitude of race, class, sexualities, religions, ages, and nationalities.
• Contacting press every week to be represented in listings, blog posts, articles, and to seek TV and radio appearances and other press coverage
• Responding to all press inquiries, providing information, images, coordinating interviews, and servicing the press in their requests in whatever ways are necessary
• Coordinating internally with BHS social media and website team, as well as the programming department and other departments
• Participating in the development of press strategy for the institution, and for specific programs and initiatives
• Generally assisting in building awareness and excitement for the institution overall
• Creating and maintaining innovative outreach strategies as needed for targeted audiences

Programming duties include:
•Regularly generating ideas for public programs
• Conducting topic and participant research as required
• Participating in regular programming meetings
• Extending invitations to participate in programs and managing communications and scheduling

This position is perfect for a self-motivated, detail-oriented person who enjoys working with a small team and has excellent follow-up skills. As a key contributor this position offers an unusual opportunity to make a direct impact on BHS’s visibility at a particularly exciting moment in the institution’s history. It also has the opportunity to contribute to the robust roster of public programs offered every week. The ideal candidate will be hard-working, highlyorganized and bring enthusiasm and talent to the team. They will value the organization’s mission and programming, and bring a deep respect for the pluralities of race, ethnicity, class, sexuality, religion, nationality, age, and gender identity in our communities.

Qualifications:

• Prior experience and demonstrable success in working with the press
• 3+ year of demonstrated success in museums, cultural organizations, media, or related fields
• Outstanding writing skills; ability to write in pithy and lengthier styles
• Outstanding interpersonal skills and verbal skills
• Ability to work collaboratively and engender trust and mutual respect both internally and externally
• Initiative-taker
• Outstanding time-management skills
• Creative problem-solver
• Proficient in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) and Dropbox
• Familiarity with social media platforms, television and radio production a plus
• Basic graphic design skills and familiarity with Photoshop and InDesign a plus
• Experience in marketing and branding a plus
• B.A. in communications or humanities (history, English or related discipline a plus)

Salary

The salary for this position is in the $52,000 - $60,000 range plus benefits.

To Apply:

Please e-mail cover letter and resume to apply@brooklynhistory.org, with "Press and Programming Associate " in the subject line. Be prepared to send writing samples and references.

Posting Date:  

May 4, 2018

Brooklyn Historical Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Click here to read our statement about our committment to hiring equality.


Translator of Public History Project Text Materials, Muslims in Brooklyn
(Arabic, Urdu, and/or Bengali)

The Muslims In Brooklyn Project

In 2017, Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS) launched Muslims in Brooklyn, a two-year, public history project to amplify stories of Brooklyn’s diverse Muslim communities. For well over a century, Muslims have lived, worked, and prayed in Brooklyn, making it a major center of Muslim life for NYC and the nation. As such, the histories and experiences of Brooklyn’s Muslim communities hold great resonance for national conversations on religious diversity and pluralism.

Over the course of this project, BHS will produce the following: a collection of oral histories and primary source records, a web-based educational curriculum, Educational programs, an arts-focused exhibition, dynamic public programming, dedicated segments in BHS’s Flatbush + Main podcast series, and a comprehensive publication. Together, these elements will provide learning experiences, challenge assumptions, and promote understanding about Brooklyn's rich ethnic and religious heritage.

Position Description

Brooklyn Historical Society is seeking an experienced translator, fluent in Arabic, Urdu, and / or Bengali to assist the project on a contract basis. This translator will help create print copy for the project’s outreach and marketing materials, and may also assist with translation of key passages in oral history transcripts.

Required Qualifications:

• Comfort with Mac and PC platforms, with MS Office Suite, and with Google Drive
• Linguistic and cultural fluency in Arabic, Urdu, and/or Bengali

Preferred Qualifications:

• Experience working with oral history records
• Knowledge of Brooklyn's Muslim communities
• Understanding of and interest in the history of New York and Brooklyn

Compensation

Compensation will be commensurate with experience

To Apply:

Please submit cover letter and resume to oralhistory@brooklynhistory.org, with “Muslims in Brooklyn Translator” in the subject line. Be prepared to provide work samples upon request. Applications will be reviewed immediately.

Posting Date:  

April 27, 2018

Brooklyn Historical Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Click here to read our statement about our committment to hiring equality.


Historian and Project Manager, Revealing Long Island History

The Historian and Project Manager for Revealing Long Island History will oversee a new and important collection processing and research initiative at Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS). This three-year project, funded by the Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation, will lead to greater public access to many of BHS’s collections related to the history of Long Island, and will inform BHS’s collection policies, exhibitions, publications, education programs, web presence, and more. The Historian and Project Manager will play an essential leadership role in meeting these major institutional goals.

Duties include conducting extensive primary and secondary source research; writing research reports and narratives; coordinating closely with Library & Archives staff; engaging consultants; and with support of the Director of Public History and key Library & Archives staff, overseeing budgets and workflow. The position will support other relevant Public History projects as needed.

The ideal candidate brings both scholarly rigor and hands-on museum experience to the position, and is committed to a practice of history that honors the diversity of Brooklyn’s communities, past and present. He/she/they is thorough and detailed oriented, a skilled writer, and an excellent communicator.

This position reports to the Director of Public History, and works in close collaboration with the Managing Director of the Library & Archives, other Archives and Collections staff, and a range of consultants as needed. The Historian and Project Manager will also communicate regularly with Development Staff and the President of BHS. There is a strong possibility that the project will continue with renewed funding and additional components to the project.

Responsibilities:

• Conducting historical research and producing research reports related to BHS collections, the history of Long Island, and American history writ large
• Overseeing project work plan and multi-person project team, and collaborating with Library & Archives staff to ensure the timely completion of collection processing and cataloguing, digitization, research, and the creation of tools enabling public access to collections
• Maintaining and organizing research files and databases
• Managing the project budget in collaboration with the Director of Public History and Library & Archives staff
• Writing content for websites, funder reports, and other deliverables to be determined
• Consulting with external experts (art historians and decorative arts consultants, translators, conservators, photographers, and others as needed)
• Serving as representative for the project to internal staff, external contractors, and other stakeholders
• Giving presentations to diverse audiences, including staff and public connected to smaller historical societies and college audiences in the Long Island region
• Contributing to other public history projects as needed
• Advising BHS staff on history, historiography, and historical interpretation
• Participating in institutional committee work as needed and appropriate

Required Qualifications:

• MA or PhD in History or similar field
• Minimum of two years’ experience working with a museum, archives, or historic site
• Extensive knowledge of American, New York, and Brooklyn history
• Extensive experience working with primary source resources, archival collections, and museum artifacts
• Commitment to researching and telling the histories of underrepresented or marginalized people
• Excellent writing and public speaking skills
• Professional, thorough, and detail-oriented
• Experience as a project manager at an institution or on a multi-person team
• Ability to read handwritten manuscript documents
• Effective, open, and collegial communicator and listener with colleagues and vendors

Preferred Qualifications:

• Experience with PastPerfect or other museum and archives software
• Digital humanities experience
• Intellectual focus on decorative arts or material culture

Compensation and Details

The start date for this full-time position is late May. Work hours are Monday through Friday, 9am to 5pm with some flexibility and occasional evening work. The salary for this position is $60,000 plus benefits.

To Apply:

Please e-mail cover letter and resume to apply@brooklynhistory.org, with “Historian and Project Manager” in the subject line. After an initial application review, BHS will request a writing sample and references from selected candidates.

Posting Date:  

April 20, 2018

Brooklyn Historical Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Click here to read our statement about our committment to hiring equality.


Visitor Services and Events Associate (Part-Time)

Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS) seeks a dynamic and outgoing individual to join our part-time Visitor Services Staff. This is an exciting opportunity to represent a growing cultural organization in Brooklyn and be part of our engaging programing and thriving rental business. Visitor Services & Events Associates are the first contact the public has with the institution and play an invaluable role in defining the tone of each visitor's experience. VS Associates assist the public at our reception desk during museum and library hours and work closely with our public programs and development teams at events that range from panel discussion to wedding rentals. VS Associates will take pride in their knowledge of the organization and guide visitors by answering questions and providing an overview of what BHS offers.

Responsibilities:

In order to be successful in this position applicants must have strong customer service skills and be able to create a welcoming and engaging environment for the public. The ideal candidate will take a leading role in daily operations at the reception desk; interfacing with the public in a friendly and welcoming manner, handling admissions, reception, and retail sales. He or she will also demonstrate an ability to drive Gift Store and Membership sales through proactive customer service. This position works closely with our Visitor Services, Retail, and Development Departments, serving a support role during programs and special events. Applicants must be available evening hours for rentals and public programs. Weekly schedule may fluctuate but will involve working a minimum of one, and a maximum of three, 8-hour shifts each week (15-25 Hours/Week, weekdays, evenings, weekends).

Qualifications:

• Minimum of 2 years' experience in visitor services, retail floor, sales, or customer service position.
• Experience handling cash and reconciling daily sales.
• Superior customer service skills.
• Ability to drive retail sales through attentive customer service.
• Demonstrated ability to problem-solve quickly and efficiently.
• Proactive, action oriented team member willing to take direction from supervisors.
• Excellent interpersonal, communications and technological skills.
• Team-player with an engaging, outgoing personality.
• Prior events or hospitality experience at a cultural organization, event space, restaurant or catering company.
• Knowledge of and enthusiasm for Brooklyn and NYC history and culture a plus!

Compensation:  

This is a part-time, paid position offering compensation of $14/hr.

To Apply:

Please e-mail resume to apply@brooklynhistory.org, with the subject line "Visitor Services & Events Associate."

Posting Date:  

March 13, 2017

Brooklyn Historical Society is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Click here to read our statement about our committment to hiring equality.


Internship Opportunities

Library & Archives    Public Programs & Communications     Development 
Public History    Education    Retail

Library & Archives

Reference and User Services Internship

The Library & Archives department of Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS) seeks a Reference and User Services intern for summer 2018 (May – August). 

BHS’s Reference and User Services internship is a long-standing program with a proven track record providing interns hands-on experience in a special collections reading room. Alumni of the program have gone on to hold professional library and archives positions at many renowned academic, governmental, and cultural institutions in New York City and beyond.

Responsibilities:

Under the supervision of the Reference Librarian, interns:
    • Staff the reference desk and supervise the library reading room 
    • Welcome museum visitors to an interior landmarked library
    • Answer in-person, email, phone, and mail reference questions
    • Gather user services assessment data
    • Assist library staff in August clean-up of the archives      
    • Contribute to special projects such as enhancing discovery tools

Requirements:

The summer internship is a compressed version of the two-semester experience offered during the academic year. Internships are available on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. Summer interns work preferably two but at least one full day per week (9:30 am – 5:00 pm), including an hour for lunch (11:45 am – 12:45 pm) and four hours on the reference desk when the library is open to the public (1:00 – 5:00 pm, May – July).

Ideal candidates demonstrate reliability, punctuality, attention to detail, and follow-through. They are patient, helpful, and energetic when working with the public.

Candidates must be enrolled in (or recent graduates of) a history or ALA-accredited library science/archives graduate-level program. Competitive candidates will have already completed coursework in reference and user services. An academic focus or some experience with special collections and archives is preferred.

Additionally, candidates must be able to lift and carry library materials and equipment weighing up to 40 lbs; to stoop, reach, walk up and down stairs; to stand and sit for prolonged periods of time; to work in a cold setting (60-65° F); and to work in conditions where dust and mold are sometimes encountered.

Compensation:  

Internships are unpaid and are intended to fulfill course credit requirements for internships and practicums. BHS staff ID grants free entrance to museums around New York City.

To Apply:

Please email resume and cover letter to library@brooklynhistory.org with the following subject line: "[LastName] - User Services Internship."

Applications will be reviewed immediately.

Posting Date:  

March  16, 2018


Public Programs & Communications

There are no internship opportunities available with this department at this time. Please check back again in the future.

 

Development

Seasonal Development Internship

Brooklyn Historical Society is currently seeking a development intern. The successful candidate will learn about fundraising operations inside a nonprofit organization and will gain valuable experience and skills applicable for careers in the nonprofit, cultural and marketing sectors. Internship may be extended and applicable to additional departments (Education, Library) if student is interested.

Position Details:

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
•Administrative: Research and prepare reports; assist with office filing and day-to-day tasks, may include some travel for errands around the city.
•Special Events: Assist Special Event Coordinator with special events. Help prepare guest lists; liaison with vendors and volunteers. Attend day-of events as needed. Conduct interviews and compose blog entries to be published on our BHS blog.
•Membership: Assist with Raisers Edge database, mailings, and other special projects and events as assigned.

Skills and Experience:

•Candidate must be interested in learning about non-profits.
•Possess excellent writing, computer, organizational and communication skills
•Knowledge of MS Office (Excel, Word, PowerPoint) and social media (Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter).
•Graphic design skills, Adobe Photoshop and Raiser’s Edge experience are a plus but not required.
•Familiarity with or interest in Brooklyn is helpful.

Hours:

Flexible during 9am-5pm business work week. 16-20 hours per week, depending on availability and requirements of student and program.

Salary:

•Unpaid, but credit may be obtained for participation in this program; interns are expected to make a commitment to a full summer and/or semester of work.
•Published credit for written content on the BHS blog.
•Includes free, unlimited admission to Brooklyn Historical Society’s Othmer Library, exhibits, programs and events and free admission to NYC museums and cultural institutions.

To Apply:

Submit a cover letter and resume to apply@brooklynhistory.org or fax to 718-222-3794. Please include "Development Internship" in the subject line. One letter of recommendation from a teacher/professor or former employer is preferred, but not required. Interviews will commence immediately.

Posting Date:

February 15, 2017


Public History

There are no internship opportunities available with this department at this time. Please check back again in the future.


Education

There are no internship opportunities available with this department at this time. Please check back again in the future.


Retail

There are no internship opportunities available with this department at this time. Please check back again in the future.


Volunteer Opportunities

Brooklyn Historical Society seeks volunteers to support our mission. 

Volunteers at Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS) offer valuable assistance to staff, visitors, and the general public in a variety of ways. Passionate about the past, present, and future of Brooklyn, volunteers are individuals who enjoy engaging with the diverse communities who make up our great borough. BHS welcomes volunteers 18 years and older who have a sincere desire to lend their time and their skills to the institution. Volunteer opportunities are subject to availability and applicant’s qualifications. Please see the below list of available volunteer openings.

Waterfront Host

Waterfront Hosts are knowledgeable and approachable and will operate throughout the Waterfront exhibit at BHS DUMBO; alert and responsive to visitor needs and are eager to meet and work with visitors; willing to take initiative in assisting visitors with navigating the Museum’s amenities, public offerings, and spaces; and critical in providing visitors a positive experience at BHS.

Waterfront Hosts are NOT docents or tour guides. Waterfront Hosts will report directly to the Visitor Services Coordinator on duty.

Responsibilities

    • Help manage crowds waiting to use interactive elements
    • Assist visitors with the operation of technology within the exhibit 
    • Time management; make sure visitors aren’t monopolizing interactive features of the exhibit
    • Make sure moving parts of the exhibit (props, magnets, costume pieces, etc.) remain in their proper areas and are not being misused or mistreated 
    • Ensure the exhibit is neat, organized, and welcoming for visitors 
    • Be familiar and comfortable with the space and its features (location of restrooms, gallery elements, visitor services desk, exits, etc.)

Required Skills

    • Strong communication
    • Flexible attitude
    • Professional attire
    • Reliability and punctuality  
    • Ability to move throughout the space and/or stand for extended periods of time; reasonable accommodations will be made when necessary  
    • Can lift 10lbs 

Recommended Skills

    • Multi-lingual
    • Experience working with and interacting with families and children 

Time Commitment

2-3 hours of training with a Visitor Services staff member. Shifts will be on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Shifts will last 4 hours with one, 15 minute break per shift. Volunteers will be required to commit to a MINIMUM of 2 shifts per month for a period of 6 months.

As and active volunteer you will receive the following benefits:

    • Free admission to BHS for you and up to 2 guests 
    • Invitations to select BHS openings 
    • Admission to BHS public programs, when available 
    • Discount in the BHS shop  
    • Free admission to most museums in New York   

Apply today - If you are interested in volunteering, please send an email to volunteer@brooklynhistory.org, detailing your volunteer interests and including your resume. Qualified applicants will be required to attend an in-person interview.