Department of History

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Internship in Historical Research
Internships in history provide an opportunity for advanced History and American Studies majors to earn academic credit while gaining professional experience in a museum, historical site, library, or similar location. Three credits of HIS 490 may be applied toward your major requirements.
Internships provide a variety of non-paying, off-campus, on-the-job experiences, including participation in archaeological digs, preparation of museum exhibits, creation of educational programs for school classes, basic research, cataloging and archival work, service as tour guides and teachers, and other professional-level tasks associated with the work of museums and historic sites.  In lieu of a salary, students receive academic credit toward their history major.
Course Credit and Benefits
Internships are generally approved for 3 credits, but it is possible to register for 1 to 12 credits, depending on the circumstances. For each credit, expect to work 50 hours total during the semester. A normal 3-hour internship requires 10 hours of work per week (150 hours for the semester). The specific schedule is arranged with the sponsoring supervisor. Internships may be completed partially or totally over an intersession or during the summer.

Up the 3 hours of HIS 490 can be applied toward the History, History and Social Sciences, or History/American Studies major. Any HIS 490 credits above three will become electives.

Internships provide practical on-the-job training in a setting in which professional historians work outside the university. They provide actual experience using the knowledge and skills you have learned as a history major, provide some variety from classroom settings, and may be useful in applying for jobs or graduate school.

In order to register for HIS 490, you should: (1) be a junior or senior; (2) have taken HIS 200 and several other history courses; (3) have at least a 2.7 overall GPA; (4) have written an approved proposal in consultation with the historic site director; (5) have written approval of the intern director. A special Permission to Register form also requires the signatures of the History Department Chair and the Dean of Arts and Sciences. Prof. Pocock has the proper forms.
Requirements of the Course
You are responsible to your supervisor at the sponsoring museum, site, or library for a work schedule, assigned projects, and all other matters relating to working conditions. You ought to treat the internship like any other job. Internships generally involve a single project, which should be completed by the end of the semester or other established date.

You must provide the internship director at Eastern with a typed progress report at least every two weeks that details your actives and time. Generally, two pages or so will be sufficient. You should also plan to meet the intern director during the first month of the semester, and periodically after that, if needed. At the end of the semester, you must submit a longer, comprehensive, report that summarizes your accomplishments for the entire internship, along with a copy of any written work you may have done as part of your duties. In most cases, the intern director will visit with your and your supervisor at the site sometime during the internship period. After receiving your final report and consultation with the sponsoring supervisor, the internship director assigns a grade for HIS 490.

How to Register
See Dr. Ann Higginbotham (, the department chair, for more information; it is helpful if you already have a museum or site in mind.  If you are interested in an internship at the Windham Textile Museum in Willimantic, contact Professor Anna Kirchmann ( You will need to fill out a permission to register form that goes to the Department Chair and the Dean of Arts and Sciences. That signed form must be done in advance to earn credit for an internship.
Further Information
83 Windham Street, Willimantic, Connecticut 06226 USA
Phone: (860) 465-4594 | Fax: (860) 465-0650
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