Historical Interpreter Internship
"I discovered that instead of being required to recite scripted material and deliver memorized facts, my job was to shape tours and discussions based on what I was interested in. I found that I wanted to be asked questions I didn't know the answers to, so that I could learn new things. The trips we took to different battlefields and the discussions we had amongst ourselves and with the visitors were incredibly insightful and invigorating."
--Maureen Lavelle, Historical Interpreter intern 2011
Roles of a Historical Interpreter:
· Answer questions about the park's location and points of interest
· Assist visitors with ancestor research and with general Civil War questions
· Develop and conduct a 35-minute walking tour over one of the area battlefields
Internships in excess of 400 hours are assigned to work two duty stations. Interns work at two of the following four stations:
1. The Fredericksburg Battlefield Visitor Center: Includes guiding a walking tour along part of the Confederate line known as the Sunken Road and staffing the information desk.
2. The Chancellorsville Battlefield Visitor Center: Includes guiding a walking tour over the area where Confederate General "Stonewall" Jackson was mortally wounded and staffing the information desk.
3. The "Stonewall" Jackson Shrine: Includes showing visitors through the building in which Jackson died and an informal presentation on Jackson's illness and last days.
4. Chatham Manor: Includes leading visitors through the diverse history of this historic home which served as a headquarters and a hospital during the Battle of Fredericksburg.
Internship Availability:1) March through mid-May; 2) mid-May through mid-August; and 3) mid-August through end of October.
When to apply: The park fills internship positions from December to February for the summer season. Applicants are encouraged to submit their applications early. Interviews and selections for summer interns are ongoing in December and January, and after February 1st potential applicants should contact the park to see if positions remain available before submitting an application.
Housing: When housing is available, it is provided free of charge to interns working full-time. Interns share the houses with seasonal employees and other volunteers, and must participate in housecleaning assignments. Housing is almost always available for summer Historical Interpreter interns, and interns can usually expect to have their own rooms but share kitchen and laundry facilities and the house telephone.The park will also provide intern uniforms.
Length of Internship: Historical Interpreter internships typically require a commitment of twelve weeks.
- Experience working with the National Park Service that could lead to a future position as a paid employee.
- School credit as arranged by applicant with the college/university.
- The opportunity to educate and provide service to park visitors.
- Free housing in park quarters. Meal stipend and mileage reimbursement.
Forward internship applications to:
Beth Parnicza 120 Chatham Lane Fredericksburg, VA 22405
Did You Know?
John Lee Pratt willed his house and 30 acres to the National Park Service. His remaining land was willed to Stafford County for recreational parks and most of his possessions were auctioned with the proceeds going to charity.