College Internships & Library Practicum
Nashville Public Library offers internships and library practicums for college and graduate school students.
About Internships and Library Practicums
Library internships are designed for college students with interests in many disciplines of the humanities, social sciences, arts, and education. Students engage in career exploration and complete well-defined projects, supervised by library staff who mentor and guide. Time commitment is usually 100-150 hours during a semester (10-15 hours per week). Available internships change each term.
High school students and youth seeking summer internships should check with the POWER Youth Summer Employment Initiative (formerly Opportunity Now), which offers internships, work experiences, and a job portal for youth ages 14-24.
The Library Practicum is designed for MLIS/MIS graduate students preparing for library careers. It offers both breadth and depth of experience through a carefully structured sequence of assignments in different Nashville Public Library divisions and branches, followed by an extended assignment in an area of professional interest. The practicum is normally a 150 hour commitment within a semester (10-15 hours per week).
Apply online using the form linked at the end of each position description. You may indicate interest in more than one position on the form. Applicants will be contacted to schedule a telephone interview and may be asked to submit additional materials. Applications undergo a thorough review and students will be notified of their status.
The Library offers internships and library practicums for spring, summer and fall terms. Position descriptions, requirements, and qualifications are posted for individual positions as they become available, up to one year in advance.
Internships and practicums are open until filled. Placement is competitive and not guaranteed. We are not able to accommodate late requests or applications.
The Metropolitan Archives in the Nashville Public Library seeks an intern to assist with archival processing of its collections. Duties include inventorying, arranging, describing and creating finding aids for specific collections, to increase access to the public and researchers. Among the records to be processed are collections of personal papers, or governmental and organizational records, which provide a window into the political, community and urban development of Nashville.
Applicants should be college students with an enthusiasm for history, political science or related subjects, and in interest in archival processing and data collections. Applicants should have the ability to work independently, with accuracy and attention to detail. Knowledge of Excel, digital imaging and basic document preservation skills is desirable.
Unpaid, part-time internship to be conducted in-person; 8-12 hours per week (minimum of 100-150 hours) during weekdays, with additional hours possible if needed for credit; otherwise flexible scheduling.
The Green Hills Branch of the Nashville Public Library is seeking a qualified intern to assist with community research focused on increasing programming and resources for homeschool families. This is a hybrid internship, where research may be conducted remotely, with in-person assignments as needed. The intern will research ideas for homeschooling programs, potentially to include surveying programs offered at other library systems, gathering homeschooling contacts and resources in Nashville, or researching existing or past NPL resources. The intern will compile information, and under supervision of branch staff, may facilitate community outreach about library services, based on findings.
Applicants should be college students with a background in social sciences, humanities, education, community development, communications or marketing, with an enthusiasm and dedication to serving others. Applicants must have excellent communication skills and excellent interpersonal skills, with the ability to work well with a diverse team and in a diverse community. Applicants should have experience conducting research, writing papers, and making presentations, and be capable of accuracy and attention to detail. Ideal candidates are reliable self-starters, who exhibit creativity and resourcefulness. Applicants with direct experience and knowledge of homeschooling are encouraged to apply.
Unpaid, part-time internship, to be conducted and supervised partly remotely, with in-person assignments as needed; 8-12 hours per week (minimum 100-150 hours); some weekday availability required, otherwise flexible scheduling.
Nashville Public Library’s practicum offers both breadth and depth of experience through a carefully structured sequence of assignments in different divisions and branches of the Library system, followed by an extended assignment in an area of professional interest. Within the established guidelines, efforts are made to accommodate academic requirements, previous experience, professional goals, and a variety of work or school schedules, so that the practicum is tailored to the needs of individual library sciences graduate students.
Practicum students with different professional backgrounds and levels of experience gain insight into many dimensions of public library service.
Practicum students agree to a schedule of assignments created by Volunteer Services, but division or branch managers are responsible for specific assignments at each location and designate appropriate levels of staff supervision. Students may shadow staff or may be assigned independent responsibilities, including circulation, reference, collections management, programming, patron services, and staff support.
Applicants should be currently enrolled graduate students in an MLIS or other similar master's program of library studies or information sciences. Preference may be given to applicants who have previous experience volunteering and/or working in libraries. Applicants must have reliability, commitment and enthusiasm for learning; they must have the ability to work well with a diverse team in varied locations and with diverse patrons; excellent communication skills; and the ability to work independently. A clearly defined area of professional interest is desirable.
Unpaid, part-time internship, to be conducted in-person, usually pursued for credit; 10-15 hours per week (minimum of 150); some weekday hours desirable, otherwise flexible scheduling.