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Museum Assistantship Program

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This project has greatly improved my analytical skills and let me focus on developing a way to transfer my skills to a material culture outside my main research area. This was particularly rewarding as I was able to engage with Southwest Native American culture and develop connections to my research focused on Pharaonic Egypt.
Paul Verhelst, American Section

The Museum Assistantship Program offers paid semester- and year-long assistantship opportunities for Penn graduate students to work on projects within the Penn Museum. The program pairs Museum projects in need of research assistance with interested graduate students from related fields.

Applicants may apply to no more than two of the projects listed below.

Prior to completing the application form, you should prepare a brief (no more than 500 words) statement that addresses:

  • Your interest in this project
  • Your relevant experience and expertise
  • A current academic CV
  • One letter of recommendation from a professor, academic advisor, or employer who can speak to your qualifications for the project to which you are applying. The letter must be sent separately via email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your full name in the subject line.

All accepted participants will be notified by mid-May.

This program is open to active University of Pennsylvania graduate students, enrolled for the upcoming Fall Semester. The Penn Museum strongly encourages applications from students who are members of groups underrepresented in careers related to museums.

Assistants are paid $15 an hour and should expect to commit 2 to 5 hours per week to their project.

Assistants should expect to commit 2 to 5 hours per week. Exact start and end dates will be determined by the project supervisors. Projects take place during the fall or spring semesters, or both.

Past Projects