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Harvard University Assistant Curator, Harvard Theatre Collection in Cambridge, Massachusetts

65950BRAuto req ID:65950BRJob Code:386056 Library Professional Department Office Location:USA - MA - Cambridge Business Title:Assistant Curator, Harvard Theatre CollectionSub-Unit:------------ Salary Grade ( :056Time Status:Full-time Union:00 - Non Union, Exempt or Temporary Basic Qualifications:

  • Advanced degree relevant to working with a performing arts collection.

  • Minimum two years of work experience, preferably in a research library or other cultural heritage setting.

  • Experience working hands-on with rare books, archives, and varied media in a library, museum, or academic environment.

  • Reading knowledge of at least one foreign language.

Additional Qualifications and Skills:

  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusion and to serving the needs of a diverse population.

  • Evidence of a strong service orientation and demonstrated ability to work effectively with faculty, students, library colleagues, and the public.

  • Experience in classroom instruction, particularly involving special collections materials.

  • Knowledge of copyright, privacy, confidentiality, and ownership as they impact work in rare book, manuscript, and archival collections.

  • Strong technology skills and an enthusiasm for adopting new technologies and systems that expand access to collections and facilitate their use in research and teaching.

  • Experience with a variety of library systems and applications.

  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.

  • Attention to and appreciation for detail.

  • Ability to thrive within a complex and changing work environment.

  • Knowledge of scholarly communication trends.

Department:Houghton LibraryPre-Employment Screening:Criminal, Education, IdentityJob Function:Library Position Description:

  • Assists the acquisitions program of the Harvard Theatre Collection, working with the curator to review, research, and evaluate potential purchases and gifts.

  • Provides general administrative support for the department, including managing gift paperwork and maintaining collection and administrative files.

  • Provides expert assistance to researchers, on site and remotely, with reference, digitization, and permission requests, including working in the Houghton reading room.

  • Collaborates with faculty and instructors, and with staff in the Public Services unit, to provide instruction for undergraduate and graduate classes, orientation sessions, and other related educational activities using Houghton collections.

  • Promotes the Harvard Theatre Collection by organizing and presenting outreach events for Harvard affiliates and the public; developing content for Library webpages; providing tours and public presentations; and contributing to the Library’s social media, in collaboration with Scholarly and Public Programs staff.

  • Organizes exhibitions and programs in conjunction with Scholarly and Public Programs staff; supports visiting fellowship program.

  • Represents the Harvard Theatre Collection in selected collaborative projects with the Technical Services unit in areas such as accessioning, cataloging, processing, and digitization.

  • Serves on Library and University committees as appropriate; contributes actively to professional organizations and shares research performed in the collection through presentations and publication.

  • Actively contributes to the Library’s efforts to improve equity, diversity, inclusion, and anti-racism (EDIBA) in all areas of work.

  • Performs other duties, as assigned, consistent with the functions of the work unit and level of responsibilities.


  • Responsible for recruiting, training, and supervising a student assistant

School/Unit:Harvard College Library EEO Statement:We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy and pregnancy-related conditions, or any other characteristic protected by law.Physical Requirements:

  • This position includes lifting and moving materials weighing up to 40 pounds and pushing heavily loaded book trucks.

Working Conditions:

  • Work is performed in an area with library materials that may contain allergens or irritants such as dust and mold, and requires working with lead type and solvents.

  • This position is based on-site in Cambridge, MA. There may be an opportunity for a flexible or hybrid work model compliant with Harvard University flexwork policies.

  • Work location is responsive and subject to change based on business needs.

  • Support of departmental and library programs and teaching may require some weekend or evening hours.

Job Summary:

Although this position will remain posted until filled, applicants are strongly encouraged to apply by end of day on July 1, 2024.

Houghton Library seeks an Assistant Curator to support building, managing, and promoting use of the Harvard Theatre Collection. Reporting to the Curator of the Harvard Theatre Collection, the Assistant Curator performs a range of collection-development, administrative, and outreach functions. Part of a highly visible and active department, the Assistant Curator collaborates with all areas of the Library including other curatorial departments, Public and Scholarly Programs, and Public Services and Technical Services for Archives and Special Collections.

The successful candidate will need to possess either a strong library background or a well-developed subject knowledge of the performing arts, preferably both. The successful candidate will also possess the capacity to master over time the broad range of formats, subjects, and time periods represented in the Theatre Collection, and the flexibility required to develop facility in the numerous skillsets used in curatorial work.

The Harvard Theatre Collection was founded in 1901 and has grown to encompass a wide range of documentary material on the history of the performing arts. The collection reflects the long and varied history of live performance, with notable strengths in Anglo-American theater, ballet, and opera as well as sundry forms of popular entertainment such as the circus and blackface minstrelsy. The Theatre Collection is committed to enriching the diversity of our established holdings and collecting in a fashion that is responsive to the broader research, teaching, and learning mission of Harvard University.

Alongside the Eda Kuhn Loeb Music Library, Fine Arts Library, Harvard Film Archive, and Harvard University Archives, Houghton Library is part of the Archives, Arts, and Special Collections of Harvard Library, a new administrative unit currently integrating approaches to public services and technical services for archives and special collections.

Commitment to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging:

Across the Harvard Library, our work is enriched by our diverse campus community. Our unique and wide-ranging abilities, experiences, and perspectives are integral to achieving Harvard University’s mission of excellence in research, teaching, and learning for our patrons, our collections, and our workplace. We believe that an inclusive environment that cultivates and promotes understanding, respect, and collaboration across our diverse workforce enables our success.

We invite individuals with diverse backgrounds, experiences and abilities to be a part of our community of over 700 staff members. Our work with faculty, students and researchers to explore answers to intellectual questions, enduring and new, and to seek solutions to the world’s most consequential problems, requires that we not only reflect, but also champion our diverse society.

Harvard Library inspires collaboration, reflection, experimentation, and discovery connecting users to related disciplines and to University-wide teaching resources. The Library engages users through curated discovery, digital collections, reimagined physical space, and specialized research support. Today, Harvard Library’s holdings range from traditional print collections to rapidly expanding access to digital resources. Harvard Library provides the University's faculty, students, and researchers—now and in the future—with exceptional experiences and comprehensive access to these materials.

Learn more about our contributions to the academic enterprise by visiting us at and about the Harvard University community at .

The Harvard Library is a proud member of the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL) Diversity Alliance.


We invite you to visit Harvard's Total Rewards website ( to learn more about our outstanding benefits package, which may include:

  • Paid Time Off: 3-4 weeks of accrued vacation time per year (3 weeks for support staff and 4 weeks for administrative/professional staff), 12 accrued sick days per year, 12.5 holidays plus a Winter Recess in December/January, 3 personal days per year (prorated based on date of hire), and up to 12 weeks of paid leave for new parents who are primary care givers.

  • Health and Welfare: Comprehensive medical, dental, and vision benefits, disability and life insurance programs, along with voluntary benefits. Most coverage begins as of your start date.

  • Work/Life and Wellness: Child and elder/adult care resources including on campus childcare centers, Employee Assistance Program, and wellness programs related to stress management, nutrition, meditation, and more.

  • Retirement: University-funded retirement plan with contributions from 5% to 15% of eligible compensation, based on age and earnings with full vesting after 3 years of service.

  • Tuition Assistance Program: Competitive program including $40 per class at the Harvard Extension School and reduced tuition through other participating Harvard graduate schools.

  • Tuition Reimbursement: Program that provides 75% to 90% reimbursement up to $5,250 per calendar year for eligible courses taken at other accredited institutions.

  • Professional Development: Programs and classes at little or no cost, including through the Harvard Center for Workplace Development and LinkedIn Learning.

  • Commuting and Transportation: Various commuter options handled through the Parking Office, including discounted parking, half-priced public transportation passes and pre-tax transit passes, biking benefits, and more.

  • Harvard Facilities Access, Discounts and Perks: Access to Harvard athletic and fitness facilities, libraries, campus events, credit union, and more, as well as discounts to various types of services (legal, financial, etc.) and cultural and leisure activities throughout metro-Boston.

Work Format:Hybrid (partially on-site, partially remote) LinkedIn Recruiter Tag (for internal use only):#LI-MG1Annual Salary Range:$66,200 to $108,200