Funded Internship Program Adds New Positions in Cultural Heritage, Marketing, Digital History, & Battlefield Preservation

Funded Internship Program Adds New Positions in Cultural Heritage, Marketing, Digital History, & Battlefield Preservation

The CWI Funded Internship Program has expanded to include five new positions for Summer 2024, further extending the range of professional experiences available to participating students.

Thanks to assistance from Cliff Murphy ’94 (History & English), director of the Smithsonian Center for Folklife & Cultural Heritage, the program has established a partnership with the Smithsonian Institute. The Folklife Center will host its first CWI Funded Intern in 2024; the specifics of the intern’s role will be determined by the selected candidate’s interests but work will be focused on supporting the annual Smithsonian Folklife Festival on the National Mall. The theme of the 2024 festival is “Indigenous Voices of the Americas: Celebrating the National Museum of the American Indian.” On the other side of the city, a new Policy & Communications internship with the American Battlefield Trust, the leading force in battlefield preservation nationwide, will offer a unique opportunity for a student interested in preservation. The intern’s work will focus on helping to craft a first-of-its-kind capacity building summit for members of the new Battlefield Partners Network, a collection of organizations allied in their support of the preservation concept. Rounding out the expanded opportunities for students to intern in the nation’s capital is a new digital history position at the George Washington Presidential Library at Mount Vernon. The Historical Data intern for the Database of the Enslaved Community at Mount Vernon will check citations, review historical materials, and assist with data cleaning while learning about best practices in historical database management. Opportunities to contribute to ongoing library-sponsored writing projects will also be provided.

A new National Park Service partner, Boston Harbor Islands National and State Park, has also joined the program, offering a Visitor Services position working with staff and volunteers at the Civil War-era Fort Warren, located on Georges Island in Boston Harbor. The intern will orient and welcome visitors; research and facilitate an original tour that is inclusive of the military and social history of the fort; and conduct primary and secondary source research on the lives and legacies of individuals stationed and imprisoned at Fort Warren. And local to Gettysburg, a new position in the Sales & Marketing Division of the Gettysburg Foundation will provide students an opportunity to play a key role in the Foundation’s Summer 2024 intercept study to gather visitor data for future planning and programming.

These new partnerships supplement existing ones with a wide range of national parks, museums, archives, and preservation organizations, increasing the program’s capacity to provide valuable career experiences for students from majors and minors across campus. 29 students were selected for Summer 2024 positions in February; interns will participate in a late-April internship prep workshop prior to scattering to their various placements.

The Funded Internship Program provides Gettysburg College students hands-on experience in public history, museums, libraries, historic preservation and/or Civil War history. Participating students work at a range of well-known historical and cultural organizations: giving public tours of iconic historic sites, gaining hands-on experience with original artifacts and documents, leading educational programs, assisting with the preservation and management of historic landscapes, doing policy and marketing work, and contributing to ongoing digital history initiatives. Several focused programs exist under the umbrella of the Funded Internships Program. The Brian C. Pohanka Internship Program, CWI's flagship internship program, was established in in 2011 thanks to the generosity of the John J. Pohanka Family Foundation and supports long-term partnerships between Gettysburg College and a wide range of the nation’s most high-profile Civil War sites. The Gallagher Program supplements the Pohanka Internships through providing focused support for student career opportunities in the field of historic preservation and battlefield preservation. The Kuhn Fellowships support student internship opportunities in museums, historical organizations, and cultural institutions in Washington, DC. The new Willen Internship in Civil War Medicine, debuting in 2024, makes possible a student experience focused on the medical aspect of the American Civil War. Donations to the Funded Internship Program are appreciated at any time; both the Pohanka Program and the Gallagher Program are set up for online donations.