Graduate Intern - Archaeology and Bioscience Collections

Updated: about 1 month ago
Location: Durham, ENGLAND

Graduate Intern - Archaeology and Bioscience Collections (
Job Number:
SPOT: - £22,113 per annum (kept in line with real living wage)
Fixed Term - Full Time
Contract Duration: Until 30 September 2025
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Working Arrangements: To be agreed locally by Department
Closing Date
: 18-Jun-2024, 6:59:00 PM
Disclosure and Barring Service Requirement: Not Applicable. 

The Role Purpose and Activities 

The intern will undertake a range of activities, delivering services to customers and gaining experience including some of the following: 

  • Providing direct user engagement with a range of visitors with differing needs and access requirements.  
  • Providing support where necessary to the development and planning of engagement programmes. 

  • Providing advice and responding to enquiries from users, including students, academics and wider public research communities, on the services and collections available, in cooperation with senior colleagues.   

  • Participating in short-term working groups and project work.  

  • Contributing to communications, social media activity, user-experience-related work, and user engagement.  

  • Administrative activities in support of work areas described above. 

They will also actively engage in staff development activities, including formal training sessions, reflection, and self-directed learning, to develop skills and knowledge appropriate to the role and context of the internship.   


Specific role requirements 

This intern role is fixed term from 30 September 2024 to 30 September 2025 attracting a salary of £22,113 per annum pro rata (+ cost of living increase), plus 27 days holiday pro rata and excellent benefits. 

This is a full-time post, working 35 hours per week. 

The work pattern of the role may include weekend, evening, and bank holiday work as business demands. 

We have four intern positions available across University Library and Collections;

  • Archaeology and Bioscience Collections (Museums, Galleries and Exhibitions) – MGE is responsible for world-class museum and art collections, supporting their care, curation, and discovery, as well as facilitating public and research access to those collections. Our collections and spaces include the University’s modern and contemporary art collection, Oriental Museum, Museum of Archaeology (at Palace Green Library) and Durham Castle Museum. We work with pre-school children, primary and secondary schools, undergraduates, postgraduates, researchers, and the wider community through our creative programmes, and increasingly through digital engagement. The intern will be involved in a wide range of activities to support the management of and access to the Museum of Archaeology and Biosciences Collections. They will be involved with collections management work, in particularly auditing, documenting and collections care across both collections to improve access. They will play a key role in improving interpretation and public engagement with the collections, facilitate and support access to the collections for teaching, research and engagement. They will have the opportunity to get hands on with collections, learn about collection care, and gain experience of cataloguing practices and standards relating to museums and collections. The intern should have a genuine and demonstrable interest in pursuing a career in the museums or heritage sector. 

Please contact Gemma Lewis Curator of (Museum of Archaeology and Biosciences), [email protected]  for further information regarding this intern position.

For the other intern positions please see separate vacancy as indicated;

  • Customer Services Team: 24000648
  • Learning and Engagement Team: 24000650
  • Art (Museums, Galleries and Exhibitions): 24000654

The Department 

In January 1833 Bishop William van Mildert donated 160 volumes to found the University Library, located on Palace Green and in the same year Durham’s first university museum opened to the public. Today the University Library and Collections offers spaces, collections, expertise, and services supporting education, research, the wider student experience and cultural and educational outreach. Collections and services operate across a wide estate of libraries, archives, museums, galleries, and exhibition spaces, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site on Palace Green. Our nationally and internationally recognised collections span early books, archives and manuscripts, museum objects and art, print and electronic materials and include a repository of digitised materials, research outputs and research data. Our users encompass anyone engaging with our collections, services, and facilities in person or remotely, this includes university staff, researchers from around the globe, students in higher education from Durham and other universities, school pupils and teachers, Durham’s local residents and tourists. 

We are an ambitious and developing team with a focus on providing the best experience for our students, researchers, and the wider community. We are valued partners working with students, professional services and academics across the University, and professionals and organisations regionally, nationally, and internationally. 

The University Library and Collections is made up of six sections: Collections; Customer Services; Education, Learning and Engagement; Research and Systems; Museums, Galleries and Exhibitions; and Finance and Administration. Staff work flexibly between the sections, seven enabled by cross-cutting groups, Collections, Education, Engagement, User Experience, Operations, Research, Staff Development and a Programme and Project Steering Group.  

Library and Collections Internships are intended for graduates, from any discipline, to serve as preparation to undertake a qualification in the fields relevant to ULC’s scope of work, or to apply for future roles in the sector. During the Internship, the post holder will obtain experience of a particular area relating to libraries, archives and special collections, or museums within an HE environment. There will also been an opportunity to gain experience about other areas of work within University Library and Collections, managing and making accessible collections in support of teaching and learning, research, and wider engagement. Interns will establish and then work to fulfil a personal development plan, guided by their line manager and a separate mentor. They will also be encouraged to keep a diary or other record of their experience and personal development. A previous intern reports that “This internship has provided an opportunity to learn and develop both technical and person-centred skills, as well as allowing me to explore new passions and interests in a variety of different departments and roles within the library.”

The University  

At Durham University, we are proud of our people, because they are at the heart of our globally outstanding institution, which is a key part of our local community. We inspire our people to do extraordinary things and we invite you to join our fantastic team.  
Across the University, we have a huge variety of roles and responsibilities, which together make us one large and successful community. Whether you are at the very start, middle or end of your career, there is a role for you. We believe everyone has their own unique skills to offer.  
At the University we promote and actively champion equality, diversity and inclusion. It is crucial that everyone can be themselves and can flourish in an environment where everyone respects each other and is treated fairly. We want our people and wider community to feel happy, secure and proud to be a part of Durham. We are looking for the same values in you.   
We welcome and encourage applications from members of groups who are under-represented in our work force including people with disabilities, women and black, Asian and minority ethnic communities. For more information on our EDI strategy and values click here

Working at Durham  
A competitive salary is only one part of the many fantastic benefits you will receive if you join the University: you will also receive access to the following fantastic benefits:  
•    27 Days annual leave per year (in additional to 8 public holidays and 4 customary days per year), a total of 39 days.
•    No matter how you travel to work, we have you covered.  We have parking across campus, a cycle to work scheme which helps you to buy a bike and discount with local bus and train companies. 
•    Discounts via our benefits portal including; money off at supermarkets, high street retailers, IT products such as Apple, the cinema and days out at various attractions.  
•    On site nursery is available and access to holiday camps for children aged 5-16 throughout the year.
•    Lots of support for health and wellbeing including discounted membership for our state of the art sport and gym facilities and access to a 24-7 Employee Assistance Programme.  
•    The opportunity to take part in staff volunteering activities. 
•    Family friendly policies, including maternity and adoption leave, which are among the most generous in the higher education sector (and likely above and beyond many employers)  
•    If you are keen on advancing in your role or career, we have a genuine passion for developing our colleagues  from qualifications, to IT skills, courses and apprenticeships. 
•    Generous pension schemes.  

What you need to demonstrate when you apply 

To be considered for this role, here are the skills/experience we’re looking for:

Essential Criteria 

1.Excellent oral and written communication skills, including an ability to communicate your knowledge, enthusiasm, and interest to others. 

2.Digital literacy – an understanding and ability to apply of the interplay of information, communication, and technology. 

3. Educated to degree level (or equivalent). 

4. Evidence of commitment personal development to improve skills and knowledge. 

5. Evidence of good team working and problem-solving skills. 

6. Evidence of a customer focussed approach to ensure the delivery of high-quality services. 

7. Ability to manage time to meet deadlines. 

8. Genuine and demonstrable interest in pursuing a career in libraries or the museums and heritage sector, particularly community engagement, and commitment to gain the required skills, knowledge, and qualification in pursuit of career goals. 

Desirable Criteria 

1. Ability to solve problems as part of a team and resolve straightforward issues.  

2. Relevant experience in a similar role / environment.  

3. Experience of using initiative within a team environment.  

4. Digital media skills, for example video creation and editing  

5. Experience and confidence in using social media in an engaging way

How to Apply   

We prefer to receive applications online. Please note that in submitting your application Durham University will be processing your data. We would ask you to consider the relevant University Privacy Statement which provides information on the collation, storing and use of data. 


What you are required to submit 

1. A CV. 

2. A document providing supporting evidence of how you meet the essential criteria and where possible, the desirable criteria (preferably in a grid format using the essential and desirable criteria, above, as headings). 

Please ensure that you submit all documentation listed above or your application cannot proceed to the next stage.

We will update you about your application at various points throughout the selection process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system. Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to make sure you have not missed any of our updates.  

When appointing to this role the University must ensure that it meets any applicable immigration requirements, including salary thresholds which are applicable to some visas.

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