One of the most important parts of a student’s education is an internship.  It is an opportunity to gain real-life work experience, explore the many different types of things people in the real world do in your field of interest, and build personal and professional relationships that can support you throughout your career. 

We’d like to invite college and graduate school students interested in historic preservation, archaeology, community planning, cultural resources, architectural history, public history, and other related fields to apply to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission’s (PHMC) Keystone Internship program for their Summer 2020 interning experience. 

This paid, 12-week-long opportunity is an excellent way for you to build your portfolio while helping PHMC and the PA State Historic Preservation Office (PA SHPO) preserve Pennsylvania’s important older and historic places.


The Keystone Summer Internship Program is designed to provide preprofessional training to students interested in pursuing a career in history, historic preservation, or museums.  The internship is intended to be an integral part of the student’s academic training and students are encouraged, although not required, to seek credit for their internships.

2017 Keystone Program interns in the PA SHPO included Nick Albright, Lauren Dunkle and London Stever.

Here is a rundown of the highlights for PHMC’s Keystone Internship program:

  • Each Keystone Summer Intern will work directly with a PHMC staff mentor on a specific project or projects in one of the agency’s five bureaus.
  • Internship opportunities are available in a wide variety of disciplines and professions included within PHMC’s programs, such as archival studies, archaeology, architecture, community planning, collections care and management, cultural resource management, curation, exhibition development, geographic information systems, graphic arts, historic preservation, historical research and programming, museum studies, museum education, and zoology.
  • Interns can work at the PHMC’s headquarters in downtown Harrisburg or may be able to work at a PHMC historic site or museum along the Pennsylvania Trails of History or in one of the PA SHPO’s regional offices.
So many possible internship locations!

Find out more about the internship by visiting the Keystone Summer Internships website at

What You Need to Know…

Here is some important information to help you decide if the Keystone Summer Internship with PHMC is right for you:

  • You’ll get money! Interns will be paid a rate of $13.97 per hour, up to 300 hours within the internship timeframe.
  • The internship begins on Monday, June 1, 2020, and ends on Tuesday, August 18, 2020. 
  • Interns must work a minimum of 225 hours and are eligible to work up to 300 hours within the program timeframe.  Work schedules will be determined between the mentor and intern.
  • All applicants must be 18 years or older, enrolled at a college or university in an undergraduate or graduate program, and must hold a minimum of a 2.5 GPA at the time of their internship.

Applications are due no later than 4:00 PM on February 14, 2020.

Cool Projects at the PA SHPO

Keystone interns at the PA State Historic Preservation Office have worked on some really cool projects! 

Undergraduate and graduate students from a variety of educational backgrounds have an opportunity to learn about the workings of the State Historic Preservation Office from the inside while completing priority projects with their mentors. 

We do our best to design intern projects that give each student an opportunity to make a significant contribution to the PA SHPO’s work and historic preservation in Pennsylvania.  At the end of their time with us, interns have a real-world experience and work product to add to their resumes.

Here are just a few of the projects previous interns with the PA SHPO have worked on:

  • Developed methodology and created inventory of African American churches and cemeteries in Pennsylvania
  • Completed National Register nominations for the Irvine Historic District in Warren County and the Loleta Recreation Area in the Allegheny National Forest
  • Research and documentation of the Twin Lakes Recreation Area in the Allegheny National Forest
  • Reviewed older historical marker texts from all over Pennsylvania and made recommendations for updating narratives to use more inclusive, culturally sensitive language
  • Research and documentation of the 1779 Battle of Thompson’s Island and the Buckaloons
  • Identified and mapped in CRGIS historic oil and gas resources in the Allegheny National Forest
2014 Interns on a field trip to the Allegheny National Forest.

You can read more about our interns’ experiences on these posts:

Sign me up!

Find out how to apply, how interns are selected and deadlines on the Keystone Summer Internships website at

Questions about this or any other PHMC internship program may be sent to