University of Chicago Library, Somit Preservation Internship

  • 1.  University of Chicago Library, Somit Preservation Internship

    Posted Feb 11, 2019 11:49 AM

    The Mary and Samuel Somit Preservation Internship
    The University of Chicago Library

    The University of Chicago Library is accepting applications for the 2019 Mary and Samuel Somit Preservation Internship. This Internship, established in 2006, has been made possible through the generosity of Dr. Albert Somit (AB '41, PhD '47), University of Chicago alumnus and past president of Southern Illinois University. Dr. Somit has established the Internship to honor his parents' legacy, serve the needs of the Library's collection, and prepare individuals for important work to preserve library materials and other scholarly works in all formats so that they are available for research and teaching.

    Internship, Summer 2019


    The six-week Internship is intended to provide firsthand experience and a broader understanding of the care, treatment, description, and accessibility of library and archives materials in a large research library. The intern will work with the Preservation Librarian and other Department managers to learn about the operations, issues, and challenges of a preservation and digital collections program. Technical Services, the Digital Library Development Center, and the Special Collections Research Center are all partners in the Library's preservation initiatives.  Under the guidance of professional library staff, the intern will undertake a project and prepare a final report.  During the internship, the intern will have the opportunity to collaborate with library staff and give a presentation about the project and its findings.


    University of Chicago Institutional History Metadata Project


    Under the direction of the Head of Archives Processing and Digital Access in the Special Collections Research Center, the intern will research the scholarly history of the University and create model metadata records describing the history, structure, and relationships of the academic units to enhance the discovery of and access to extensive archival and digital collections.


    The University of Chicago opened its classrooms in 1892 with a faculty of 120 scholars, offering graduate and undergraduate instruction across the arts, sciences, and professions. Today the University has more than eighty departments, schools, divisions, institutes, and committees, some with roots in the founding faculty, others established in the twenty-first century. The Special Collections Research Center holds University publications and extensive archival records that describe the growth and development of the University's Schools, Divisions, College, and other academic units, from its founding to the present.   


    For the project, the intern will research and describe selected academic units and document how their names and organization evolved utilizing digitized University publications and archival records located within the Special Collections Research Center. The intern will create model Encoded Archival Context for Corporate Bodies, Persons, and Families (EAC-CPF) and International Standard Archival Authority Record for Corporate Bodies, Persons and Families (ISAAR (CPF)) compliant records for selected academic units and participate in assessing the suitability of these standards, to advance the Library's goal of describing the history, structure, and relationships of the academic units of the University to enhance the accessibility to its resources. As part of this project, the intern will also participate in discussions of strategies for structuring and leveraging the data to develop a network of linked and exchangeable records, and advise on the development of procedures and tools for the continuation of the project.  A final report submitted at the end of the internship will describe the work of the project and compile findings and recommendations.   


    Activities during the internship may include:


    • Researching and documenting the University's academic structure including changes in names and relationships among units over time.
    • Examining EAC-CPF and other metadata and authority control systems in us in libraries and archives
    • Researching how these systems have been successfully implemented at other institutions
    • Learning about the tools available to improve access to digital collections

    The intern will work with staff from across the Library, including the Special Collections Research Center, Digital Library Development Center, Dissertation Office, Metadata Management Services, and Preservation and Digitization Departments to gain a broader understanding of how the information collected in the project can be integrated into existing library tools and records to support research and learning.  

    Eligibility and Requirements

    The Internship is open to recent graduates and currently enrolled students of a recognized library school of information or related program; or students with equivalent experience and training in preservation, digital collections, archives and special collections, and metadata. The applicant should possess the ability to work collaboratively and independently to accomplish project goals. Familiarity with metadata schemas and authority systems for libraries and archives is highly desirable. 

    The 2019 Internship provides a $4,000 stipend.

    To apply for the Internship, individuals should electronically submit a letter of application, resume, list of completed relevant coursework or training, and contact information (name and email address) for two professional references. To be considered, individuals must currently be authorized to work permanently in the U.S., and be able to commit to six consecutive weeks of full-time work between approximately June 1st and August 31st.


    The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action / Equal Opportunity / Disabled / Veterans Employer.


    The deadline for applications is Monday, March 4th, 2019


    Submit electronic applications to:


    For more information please see our Somit Preservation Internship website ( or contact:


    Sherry Byrne, Preservation Librarian

    University of Chicago Library