The National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) is home to a broad spectrum of diverse opportunities for students and scholars interested in enriching their natural history pursuits through participation in academic programs, appointments, research visits, and formal affiliation. Whether interested in engaging with the public, contributing to the administration and operation of the museum, or pursuing scientific endeavors, through our academic opportunities we offer something for everyone.
NMNH welcomes qualified scholars and professionals from around the world who are interested in utilizing the collections and facilities of the NMNH for on-site research and study. Each science department, library, and laboratory has specific visitor guidelines and contact staff. Please review the policies and processes for the unit most relevant to your area of study. Visiting researchers must notify the appropriate NMNH staff well in advance of the anticipated arrival to ensure approvals, availability of collections, appropriate workspace, and other details.
Permission is required before any permanent alteration of a specimen such as dissection, clearing and staining, SEM, TEM, or tissue sampling is allowed.
Fellows and Fellowships
Our fellowships provide an opportunity for scholars to conduct resident, independent study under the guidance of an NMNH staff advisor. Fellowships may be made competitively or non-competitively, may be paid or unpaid, and are available to US and non-US citizens.
As part of our academic community, fellows have access to the world’s largest natural and cultural history collections, including 145 million natural history specimens and state-of-the-art analytical equipment.
For a complete listing of fellowship opportunities at NMNH visit the Smithsonian Office of Fellowships.
Interns and Internships
Our internships offer undergraduate, graduate and advanced high school students a mentor-guided experience designed to meet their learning objectives and provide personal insight into career pathways that lead toward academic and professional success. An internship at NMNH is a prearranged, structured learning opportunity under the direct supervision of an NMNH staff member who serves as a mentor.
In addition to learning from their mentors, interns may join focused enrichment and social activities. During the summer, we host a series of behind-the-scenes tours, workshops, demonstrations, discussions and group events to provide interns a broader understanding of the natural history sciences, museum education and outreach, and science administration. We bring new and returning interns into our diverse community year-round, with tenure ranging from one week to six months.
For a complete listing of internship opportunities at NMNH visit the Smithsonian Office of Internship Programs.