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Internship at Smithsonian Folkways Recordings: Deadline 02/01/16

Thursday, January 28, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Jennifer Studebaker
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Office of Fellowships & Internships



Minority Undergraduate Juniors, Senior and Graduate Students in Business and Public Administration

                                                    Internship Project Description


Museum/Institute/Office:     Center for Folklike and Cultural heritage

Department/Division/Office:     Smithsonian Folkways recordings

Project Title: Music Business Internship

Stipend: $6000

Duration: 10 full-time weeks beginning June 1, 2016

Deadline: February 1, 2016

Name of Smithsonian Staff Supervisor(s):  Cecille Chen       

Title of Smithsonian Staff Supervisor(s):  Royalty Manager

Email Address: ChenCE@si.edu


Smithsonian Folkways Recordings is the non-profit record label of the national museum of the United States. Our mission is to foster cultural diversity, education, increased understanding, and lively engagement with the world of sound. The Smithsonian Folkways collection features more than 3,600 albums and 40,000 tracks (and growing), including iconic songs (“This Land is Your Land” by Woody Guthrie), legendary artists (Pete Seeger, Lead Belly, Doc Watson), children’s music, world music, and non-musical sound (poetry, sound effects, natural sounds). The music is distributed worldwide via CDs and vinyl records, digital downloads and streams, podcasts, lesson plans, and videos.

The music business intern will work on a range of short-term and long-term projects, all supporting the intellectual property rights of the artists and songwriters who have contributed to Smithsonian Folkways’ collection of music. The intern will gain knowledge and experience in artist and publishing royalties administration, music licensing, copyright issues and contracts. Such experience can be the foundation for a career in any field that deals with royalties, licensing, and intellectual property rights, such as music, film, and book publishing.

Tasks may include:

             researching song copyright information

             preparing copyright application forms for submission to the US Copyright Office

             locating and contacting artists or their heirs

             scanning contracts, analyzing and entering contract terms in a database

             preparing and mailing royalty statements and contracts

The royalty manager with work directly with the intern and assign tasks based on the intern’s strengths and interests. A successful candidate will have skills in one or more the following areas: general music knowledge, business management, research, data analysis, computer programming, and accounting. Knowledge of Excel and Filemaker Pro is a plus. The Smithsonian Folkways offices are located in Downtown Washington D.C, just off the National Mall, and is very accessible by public transportation. Perks include a 20% discount to all Smithsonian stores and restaurants.

The funding source for this internship is the James E. Webb Internship Program for Minority Undergraduate Juniors, Senior and Graduate Students in Business and Public Administration


These opportunities are intended to increase participation of minority groups who are under-represented in the management of scientific and cultural organizations.  Interns are placed in offices, museums, and research institutes throughout the Smithsonian Institution.


·         U.S. Citizens and U.S. permanent residents

·         Must be formally enrolled in an undergraduate or in a graduate program of study in business or public administration

·         Students are generally expected to have an overall G.P.A. of 3.0 or its equivalent.


Applicants must apply through the Smithsonian's online internship application system, SOLAA:


Applicants should select "Music Business Internship (CFCH)"

Required materials

 (1) Essay, 2 – 4 pages double spaced, 12 point type, that addressed the following:

·         What are your career goals and interests?

·         How do you see an internship at the Smithsonian relating to your career goals?

·         Your past and present academic history and other experiences which you feel have prepared you for an internship in business or public administration.

(2) Official Transcripts

(3) Resume

(4) References

  • Names and email addresses of two academic references
  • All reference letters are considered confidential unless confidentiality has been waived by the reference
  • Through SOLAA you will send an email to these referees so they can provide references through the web
  • Have the reference submit in sufficient time to meet the application deadline


Selection Criteria

The relevance of an internship at the Smithsonian to the student’s academic and career goals will be an important part of the evaluation of an applicant.  Applicants should note that it is not possible for the Office of Fellowships and Internships to arrange an internship project or award a stipend to all qualified candidates.

More information


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