Yale Peabody Museum Summer Internships
Yale's first microscope from 1734
Part of the third cyclotron from 1932
Astrolabe from 1537

Investigating the History and Technology Behind 500 Years of Scientific Instruments

Advisor: Alexi Baker (Collections Manager, YPM Division of History of Science and Technology


Length: 6-8 weeks in the summer


Program Description:

The Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History seeks a motivated Yale student to participate in a six- to eight-week internship in the summer of 2020, with the Division of History of Science and Technology [HST]. HST has a nationally-important collection of historical scientific instruments, other scientific artifacts, and technologies of all kinds from across more than 500 years. These fascinating objects tell the story of science at Yale since its foundation in 1701, but also a multitude of other stories about science and technology and all aspects of daily life in North America and Europe.


The HST collection will have a dedicated exhibition gallery for the first time when the Peabody Museum reopens after a major renovation in 2023. The summer intern will get to help the production of this new exhibition and related materials by playing “history detective”. This could involve learning how to “read” the clues visible on historical scientific artifacts, investigating the science and technology behind their production and use, exploring centuries of related archives and images at the Yale libraries, and recording “oral histories” with living scientists and historians. The information which the intern discovers will feed into the exhibition and related outputs, and at the conclusion of the internship the student will also summarize the work they have done and the discoveries which they have made.


Previous experience with history or science or a related field would be useful, but undergraduate students from any subject are welcome to apply. Being interested, motivated, adaptable, and dependable are the most important qualities for this position. The intern will work both at central campus when they are working on libraries, archives, and oral histories – and at West Campus when they are working with the objects themselves. West Campus is a 15-minute shuttle or car ride from New Haven.


Stipend: $2250-3000