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Great Lakes Naval Museum Internship Program

The Great Lakes Naval Museum internship program allows for interns with numerous interests, strengths, and goals to gain practical, hands-on museum experience at the United States Navy's newest museum. As an official Department of the Navy Museum, the Great Lakes Naval Museum's mission is to select, collect, preserve, and interpret the history of the United States Navy with particular emphasis on the Navy's only "boot camp" at the Naval Training Station/Center at Great Lakes, Illinois. The list below contains pertinent information about the Great Lakes Naval Museum's internship program, current internships available, and the steps necessary to apply for an internship.

Eligibility: Registered students of colleges or universities and graduates thereof are eligible for this program.

Credit: The Great Lakes Naval Museum does not award college credit, but many U.S. colleges and universities will recognize academic work performed while interning at the Museum. Contact your academic advisor, school's registrar, or career planning office for more information on how to receive credit.

Duration: There is no set length for an internship. The minimum period is three weeks full-time (120 hours). Internships can last an academic quarter or semester, during which time a student may serve on either a full or part-time basis.

Stipends: The Great Lakes Naval Museum provides no salaries or other stipends to interns.

Current Internships Available:

Curatorial: An intern with an American Studies, history or art history background would be closely involved with exhibition programs, reinforcing learned research and writing techniques, as well as providing work experience in a museum environment. Curatorial interns are supervised by the Museum Director who assigns tasks that might include research and development of an exhibition script, catalogs or brochures. Projects involve research in the photographic and artifact collections of the Great Lakes Naval Museum. The intern is expected to have excellent research skills, the ability to write clearly and concisely and to work independently. A prior knowledge of American naval history is not essential, but would be helpful for this internship.

Education: An Education internship is open to students with backgrounds in education, history or art history. The intern works both independently and with museum staff to conceive, develop, and implement education programs directly related to the Museum's collection. Education programs may be developed for elementary and secondary school students, special education students, senior citizens, and the "casual" visitor. School programs are geared to the curriculum. This internship provides an opportunity for a student to apply education and history skills to interpret artifacts in a museum setting and allows students to explore the museum field as a career choice. The intern should have knowledge of age-group characteristics, skill levels, and age-appropriate activities. He or she should also possess strong research skills. A background in American history or American Studies is preferable, but not required.

How to Apply:
To apply for an internship, please submit the following information:

  • Internship Program application form   Download Application
  • Academic transcripts (unofficial are acceptable)
  • A resume outlining your educational, professional, and volunteer experiences
  • A one-page personal statement (use this essay to tell us how an internship at the Great Lakes Naval Museum will advance your academic/career goals)
  • One letter of recommendation
  • A writing sample of not less than 1,000 words

Please submit completed application materials (via mail or electronically) to the following:


Director, Great Lakes Naval Museum
Email: GLNM@navy.mil
Great Lakes Naval Museum
Building 42
610 Farragut Avenue
Great Lakes, IL 60088

Questions: If you have any questions about the internship application process, please contact the Great Lakes Naval Museum at 847-688-3154.