Rare Book School

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Job Opportunities


Position: Assistant Curator and Special Assistant to the Associate Director of Rare Book School

Rare Book School (RBS) seeks a full-time Assistant Curator, who will also serve as Special Assistant to the Associate Director of Rare Book School. He or she will work closely with RBS's Curator of Collections and Associate Director to steward and build RBS's 80,000-item teaching collection. Primary duties include: acquisitions processing; cataloging; collections maintenance (including preservation, shelving, and shelf moves); liaising with RBS faculty and Special Collections staff; and maintaining collections finding aids and other collections-related files. Additional duties include: assisting with exhibitions, collections presentations, and special events; reference assistance for visitors to the collections; and support for projects undertaken by the Associate Director, which range from publications to grant-related research. Over time, duties could be expanded to include: management of part-time collections staff; selection of items for purchase; and donor cultivation and stewardship.

Located on central Grounds at the University of Virginia, RBS offers a close-knit, highly collaborative, mission-centered work environment with an abundance of engaging, bookish people and fascinating historical objects. This position requires a service-oriented, systematic, analytical thinker possessing: excellent communication skills; reading knowledge of Latin, French, German, or Spanish; an interest in technology, craft, and design; and a passion for researching and organizing historical objects.

Other desirable qualifications include: a degree in the humanities or social sciences, with an emphasis on books or prints as historical objects; especially desirable would be an ALA-accredited master's degree in library or information science, or an advanced degree with a concentration or specialization in bibliography and/or book history; hand skills (e.g., printmaking, bookbinding, letterpress printing, conservation); knowledge of the antiquarian book or print trade; experience with organizing exhibitions and teaching with historical objects; training in photography; experience working with both Macintosh and Windows operating systems, and applications such as MS Word, MS Excel, MS Access, Adobe Acrobat Pro, and WordPress/BuddyPress; a long-term interest in the humanities, special collections librarianship, conservation, and/or the antiquarian book trade.

This is a full-time, two-year position with the possibility of renewal or promotion. This post requires the repetitive use of a keyboard at a workstation, as well as manual dexterity and the ability to lift and move boxes of up to 40 lbs in weight. The RBS workspace is a standard special collections library environment with possible exposure to mold and dust. Saturday and Sunday shifts are typically required during the summer months when RBS programs are in session. Starting salary ranges from $32,000 to $42,000, depending upon experience and academic/professional attainment. Benefits include annual leave, sick leave, health insurance, an RBS course each year, and contributions toward retirement. We hope to have someone fill this position as soon as May 2015, to overlap with current curatorial staff; however, the start date is somewhat flexible.

Applicants should submit the following materials:

1) A cover letter discussing: a) your interest in RBS; b) the various strengths you could bring to RBS's collections and staff; c) the skills you hope to cultivate at RBS and the areas in which you hope to grow; and d) the ways in which this position would help you meet your longer-term professional goals.

2) A c.v., including at least three references.

3) A writing sample of at least 1,000 words.

Please send electronic copies of materials to rarebookschool@virginia.edu, or to

Rare Book School
Attn: Barbara Heritage
114 Alderman Library
University of Virginia
Charlottesville, VA 22904-4103

Application deadline: March 1, 2015

Rare Book School is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, citizenship status, Vietnam era or special disabled veteran’s status, or sexual orientation.