Archivist, Arts Library Special Collections - Yale University


Location: New Haven, CT
Salary: $70,000 - $80,000
Employment Term: Full-time
Employer Contact: Human Resources

Position Focus:

Are you someone with two or more years of professional experience working with archives in an academic or museum library, with formal training in archival theory and practice? Do you also have an educational background in the visual arts, art history, or design and enjoy collaborating with colleagues? If so, we invite you to apply for the Archivist position currently open at The Robert B. Haas Family Arts Library at Yale University. This is one of two archivist positions at the Arts Library, the other being an Architecture Records Archivist position.

This position reports to the Associate Director of Arts Library Special Collections (ALSC). In this role, you will be primarily responsible for archival processing, with some acquisitions and research services responsibilities included. The focus of the position is preparing finding aids for collections related to the visual arts, design, and theater according to relevant standards and established local practice. You will also assist in preservation assessment and in the selection of materials for conservation treatment. You will also help oversee the work of three FTE ALSC staff and several student workers. There will be opportunities to assist with the planning and execution of exhibits in the William H. Wright Special Collections Exhibition Area and online. Collaborating with other special collections units within Yale University Library (YUL) system, you will help ensure that policies and procedures governing the use of the collections follow the YUL’s security standards. This position is also responsible for Yale Bookplate Collection acquisitions. As a member of the Haas Arts Library and the Yale Library system, you will participate in committees, working groups, and strategic initiatives with other Yale colleagues. You will contribute to Yale University Library and University-wide initiatives and be supported in professional development activities.

This position will be assigned a rank of Librarian 2 or Librarian 3. Librarian ranking information can be found at:

Essential Duties

  1. Assumes a variety of responsibilities related to special Collections/restricted materials in all formats (including born-digital). This includes selection, appraisal, arrangement and description, preservation, access, outreach, and security.
  2. Manages all aspects of ALSC archival processing in paper or electronic format, including accessioning, arrangement and description, and preservation and rehousing. Plans, directs, and reviews work of library staff, student assistants, and interns who process special collections.
  3. Improves accessibility to archival collections by preparing and publishing EAD encoded finding aids. Creates collection level records and assists other staff in preparing such records for inclusion in the online library catalog.
  4. Serves as the primary selector for the Yale Bookplate Collection and may participate in other ALSC collection development. These activities include research and selection, dealer and donor relations, and acquisitions negotiations across a broad range of materials relating to the visual arts, design, and the dramatic arts.
  5. Assist in providing reference support in the use of special collections and may collaborate to deliver instructional sessions in the use of Arts Library special collections by the Yale community and the broader public.
  6. Assists in the creation and maintenance of online research guides and other support tools.
  7. Participates in the creation of Arts Library exhibition, outreach and instruction programs, and events.
  8. Assists with reading room operations that includes patron requests; reference services to patrons in person, by telephone, and via email; reproduction requests; compliance with security procedures; training library staff, student assistants, and interns.
  9. Collaborates with Arts Librarians to manage current and future special collections digitization efforts.
  10. Participates in setting priorities, planning workflows, recommending changes to procedures and policies; resolves problems, interprets policies, generates statistics and reports, carries out projects.
  11. Serves on library committees, working groups, and task forces, and engages in professional development outside the library.
  12. Assists, if necessary, with disaster recovery efforts.
  13. May perform other duties as assigned.

Required Education and Experience

  1. Master’s degree from an ALA-accredited library school and an educational background in the visual arts, art history, or design.
  2. A minimum of two years of professional (post-MLIS) experience working with archives, with formal training in archival theory and practice. Experience processing manuscript and archival collections.
  3. Demonstrated knowledge of archival and library management systems, such as Aeon and ArchivesSpace.
  4. Demonstrated experience with basic preservation and conservation standards for archival and special collections.
  5. A record of designing projects and bringing them to a conclusion in a timely fashion.
  6. Demonstrated ability to provide research support for special collections.
  7. Excellent communication skills and analytical ability, and an ability to provide positive customer service experiences for a diverse clientele.

Required Skill/Ability 1:

A minimum of two year’s professional experience (post-MLIS) in an academic or museum library, with formal training in archival theory and practice.

Required Skill/Ability 2:

Demonstrated proficiency in archival appraisal, arrangement and description practices and standards and demonstrated knowledge of the issues related to the acquisition of born-digital materials.

Required Skill/Ability 3:

Demonstrated knowledge of current national data content and structure standards related to the archival control of collection materials. Demonstrated knowledge of archival and library management systems, and familiarity with tools that create EAD finding aids and platforms such as ArchivesSpace.

Required Skill/Ability 4:

Demonstrated ability providing public services for special collections. Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively and independently with varied groups within a complex organization and rapidly changing team environment.

Required Skill/Ability 5:

Commitment to an inclusive workplace. Ability to engage with diverse audiences (age, gender, nationality, race/ethnicity, profession, sexual orientation, etc.).

Apply Here