[this program is under development during 2023]
The Roger Williams Park Museum of Natural History and Planetarium (RWPM), along with the Rhode Island Natural History Survey (RINHS), have developed a mentorship program to allow interested students to participate in museum activities as interns, working with the museum curator. Efforts target museum collections needing management and involve working with specimens, compiling specimen records, and entering information into databases with the larger goal to make the RWPM collections more available to interested researchers and the public. Collections needing attention include the geological collection, plants (pressed specimens of RI flora), several invertebrate collections (e.g., corals, mollusks, insects), and some vertebrate groups (e.g., reptiles, bird eggs). Work with other collections may be possible depending on the intern’s interests.
The internships provide collections management experience, projects on specific collections or taxa of interest, or other types of projects that could be carried out in a museum setting developed by interested faculty and students in consultation with the museum curator. The projects will provide educational experiences of value to students and help the museum with its collections management responsibilities.
Internships could be developed for college credit (course credit, independent projects, etc.) and/or could be paid internships (part time during the school year or for the summer) dependent on availability of museum staff and funding. The college/university faculty would serve as the student’s advisor on the academic aspects of a project with the museum curator as the day-to-day supervisor at the RWPM.
Queries about internships should be sent to the Roger Williams Park Museum at: email@example.com. To inquire about a specific internship opportunity, please include the following information in your message:
- Contact information for the faculty member and student
- Student background and taxonomic or museum subjects of interest
- If there is a specific project under consideration, please provide a brief description
- Is the project for college/university credit?
- Is funding available for the internship through the student’s home institution?
Further information about the Roger Williams Park Museum is available at its website. Please feel free to contact either the RWM or RINHS with any questions about the Natural History Mentorship Program.