You know from watching the History Channel that our records of the world, as incomplete as they are, still hold thousands of possible narratives. Investigating the social, cultural, political, and geographic forces that have created today’s world calls for inquisitiveness and critical thinking, and internships in history are no different. Sometimes the research question at hand requires a student to view society through a microscope; sometimes, a telescope. History interns are equipped to use historical documents and contextual evidence to draw conclusions about everything from small, forgotten incidents to global trends. History internships, then, are great preparation for a range of careers that rely on cultural knowledge tied with analytical thinking.
Interns in history find positions in historical societies, archives, museums, government agencies, publications, and more. Each role, of course, develops a different skill set while drawing on the student’s educational background. For example, you may intern at a natural history museum and work in the department of public programs, education, and outreach. What historical gems will you make sure to highlight in your tour of animals from the Ice Age? How will you structure your story so that your audience understands how one event influences many others? Other posts place interns in history in the archival sciences, art curatorial projects, exhibition design, or museum management.