Project Assistant – Smithsonian National Museum of American History (Washington, DC)

The Smithsonian’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation is recruiting for an assistant to help us maintain and grow the Spark!Lab National Network, an initiative to take our unique brand of hands on invention learning to communities across the nation. The position announcement is below; please feel free to share it with other networks and colleagues who may be interested.


The Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation (Lemelson Center) is dedicated to exploring invention in history and encouraging inventive creativity in young people.   A part of the center at the National Museum of American History, the Draper Spark!Lab is a hands-on invention activity center which provides museum visitors, particularly children and their families, the opportunity to engage in the invention process through history, engineering, science, and creative activities. The Lemelson Center also operates the Spark!Lab National Network, an extension of the NMAH-based Spark!Lab with sites in children’s museums, science centers, and other institutions outside of Washington, DC. There are currently 6 Spark!Lab locations outside of the Smithsonian with the expectation of expanding significantly in the future.


We are recruiting for a Project Assistant to help us maintain and grow the National Network.  The Project Assistant will serve as the primary point of contact for existing Network sites. S/he will develop resources for current National Network members, conduct regular check-ins with each site, and work to develop a community of practice around Spark!Lab. S/he will also work with the Head of Education to develop and lead training for existing members both on- and offsite; periodic travel is required. The Project Assistant also will regularly spend time working with visitors, staff, and volunteers in the Draper Spark!Lab at NMAH.


The best qualified applicants will have experience developing networks or communities, developing and leading training, working in an informal learning environment, and developing, maintaining, and refining systems and processes. A master’s degree or equivalent experience in museum education, museum studies, communications, or a relevant field is preferred.


This is a full-time, 1-year Trust (non-Federal) position at IS-9, Step 1. The salary is $54,972 with excellent benefits.  To apply, please submit by email a cover letter, resume and two (2) writing samples, by August 25, 2017 to:


Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation

National Museum of American History, Smithsonian

14th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW

Washington, DC 20013-7012


The Smithsonian is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.  Women and minorities, and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.


Post expires at 5:00pm on Friday August 25th, 2017