at the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center

Application Deadlines:

Spring Cycle 2024: November 10, 2023
Summer Cycle 2024: February 9, 2024
Fall Cycle 2024: May 17, 2024

Are you passionate about Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities and histories?

The Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center (APAC) believes that a great 21st-century museum is more than a building. We must engage communities in surprising and innovative ways, transcending boundaries and barriers. We are a migratory museum that brings Asian American, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander history, art, and culture to you through innovative museum experiences online and throughout the United States.

The Center works to redefine and expand the traditional museum model to transform how museums can be places for civic engagement, critical and constructive dialogue, and social justice. Through programs that invite visitors to inquire, discover, and learn via direct exchanges with artists, scholars, and cultural practitioners, we engage the public through events that recognize art, history, and culture as vehicles that can bring everyone together. 

The Center has two internship tracks - Education and Operations.

  • The Education track will: will focus on projects that expand AANHPI representation in K-12 education nationwide and interns’ knowledge of educational platforms and community partnerships.
  • The Operations track will: focuses on projects related to upcoming exhibitions and expanding interns’ knowledge on museum operations and procedures.

While these tracks are separate, the internship program’s foundation is a cohort-learning environment. Interns can expect to work with and learn from one another. All interns at the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center will work alongside staff, receive professional development, and expand their knowledge on museum operations and “behind the scenes” work throughout the internship.   

Additional information on the internship tracks and how to apply can be found in our Application Guide.

How can I apply? 

All applications and the accompanying materials will be submitted through the Smithsonian’s SOLAA portal. Instructions on how to apply can be found in our application guide.

Applications must include:

  1. A three (3) page Personal Abstract
  2. Resume or Curriculum vitae (CV)
  3. Unofficial academic transcripts from all higher education institutions attended
  4. One (1) Academic Writing Sample (no more than 5 pages MAX)
  5. One (1) Letter of Recommendation

* The Personal Abstract and Academic Writing Sample should all be formatted in 12pt font, Times New Roman, and double spaced.

Application Timelines and Deadlines

  • Spring Cycle 2024
    • Application Opens: September 5, 2023
    • Application Deadline: November 10, 2023 at 11:59PM EST
    • Internship Start and End Dates: February 5 - April 12, 2024
  • Summer Cycle 2024
    • Application Opens: January 1, 2024
    • Application Deadline: February 9, 2024 at 11:59PM EST
    • Internship Start and End Dates: June 3 - August 9, 2024
  • Fall Cycle 2024
    • Application Opens: March 25, 2024
    • Application Deadline: May 17, 2024 at 11:59PM EST
    • Internship Start and End Dates: September 9 - November 15, 2024

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Asian Pacific American Center’s Internship Program? A ten-week cohort-based internship experience. In the Spring and Fall cycles, the internship is part-time (10-17 hours a week) with a $24/hour stipend. In the Summer cycle, the internship is full-time (35 hours a week) with a weekly $850 stipend.

How many interns are accepted? For the Spring and Fall cycles, two (2) interns will typically be accepted unless otherwise noted. For the summer cycle, four (4) interns will typically be accepted per cycle unless otherwise noted.

Who is eligible? Current undergraduate students (current sophomores, juniors and seniors) and recent graduates from an undergraduate program (within 15 months of graduation). All applicants must be at least 18 years old and have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. All majors are welcome!

Where is the internship? The internship program will be an in-person experience at the APAC office in Washington, D.C.

When does the internship take place? Internships take place over the course of around 10 weeks in three cycles: Fall, Spring, Summer. Please check the application guide for more details.

What is the expected weekly time commitment? Spring/Fall cycle interns are expected to commit 10-17 hours per week for ten weeks. Summer cycle interns are expected to commit 35 hours per week for ten weeks.

Is the Asian Pacific American Center’s Internship Program paid? During the Spring and Fall cycles, each intern will receive a $24/hour stipend. In the Summer cycle, each intern will receive a weekly $850 stipend.

Is housing provided in Washington, D.C.? No, Interns are required to find their own housing accommodations. For some guidance, please check out the Smithsonian Office of Internship Programs' information on travel and housing for the Washington, DC area. If you're selected for an internship, you'll receive some informal, unofficial guidance to help you prep for your internship, including finding housing.

Is there a vaccination requirement? The Smithsonian may require proof of vaccination. Please see additional information regarding reasonable accommodations here.

What happens after I submit my application in SOLAA? 

After the internship deadline (see date above) passes, the Asian Pacific American Center Internship Committee will review all completed applications submitted to SOLAA. Within approximately 2-3 weeks, the committee will notify selected candidates for a virtual interview. Once the interviews are completed, the committee will make their selections for the semester and notify candidates within 2 weeks. Internship offers will be delivered via email. All candidates who submitted an application will receive a status update through SOLAA approximately 5 weeks after the internship deadline has passed. Notification times may vary depending on the size of the application pool and staff capacity.

Within a week, after a student is selected and accepts their internship position, APAC will send several forms for the accepted student to fill out as soon as possible. Any delay to these documents could impact the students’ internship start date and eligibility.

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