The Civil War Institute’s Brian C. Pohanka Internship Program offers Gettysburg College students a special opportunity to do paid work on the frontlines of history, giving public tours of iconic historic sites, gaining hands-on experience with original artifacts and documents, assisting with the management of historic landscapes, leading children’s programs, and conducting independent historical research.
Participants receive a $1,500 stipend from the CWI and free on-site housing at their respective parks/museums. Applicants need not be history majors or specialists in the Civil War era, although good communication skills, substantial interest in the past, and a desire to share that interest with others are essential. The Pohanka program is open to all matriculated Gettysburg College students, although first-years, sophomores, and juniors receive priority in selection, and is administered according to Gettysburg College’s nondiscrimination policy, details of which can be found on the Admissions/Financial Aid website.
Established in 2011 thanks to the generosity of the John J. Pohanka Family Foundation, the Pohanka Internship Program supports long-term partnerships between Gettysburg College and a wide range of the nation’s most high-profile Civil War sites. Pohanka Interns come away from their summer experiences with a greatly expanded awareness of the career options available to students with academic training in history and increased commitment to engaging public audiences in meaningful dialogue about the past. Many have gone on to enroll in graduate programs in history, public history, and historic preservation. Former interns have pursued graduate work at Oxford University, Columbia University, the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, West Virginia University, University of Massachusetts, UNC Greensboro, Simmons College, Duquesne University, Eastern Illinois University, American University, University of West Georgia and more, and many have found employment in the field of public history.