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Starting pay rate: $15.25 / hour

Federal Work Study preferred.

Position Description

Position Overview:

Special Collections and Archives (SCA) at Cline Library organizes, cares for, and provides public access to unique primary source material, including historic documents, photographs, sound recordings, films, and born-digital materials. SCA is responsible for two different groups of material: the Colorado Plateau Archives, which encompasses archival collections pertaining to the human and natural history of the Colorado Plateau region, and University Archives, which includes the permanent historical records of Northern Arizona University (NAU). Student Assistants are invaluable members of the SCA team.

Student Assistants work closely with staff to learn archival processing, preservation, and handling skills to properly organize, preserve, and create access tools for SCA’s archival collections.  You will receive extensive on-the-job training that will prepare you to evaluate, organize, describe, rehouse, and digitize one-of-a-kind historic collections. 

Please note that Special Collections & Archives’ current operating hours are 8 AM – 5 PM Monday through Thursday, and 8 AM – 4 PM on Friday. All applicants for the Student Assistant position must be able to work 10 hours a week during SCA’s normal operating hours.

If you are interested in cultural heritage, historical materials, libraries, archives, museums, or other cultural institutions and looking for interesting and rewarding work as part of an encouraging team, we encourage you to apply. 

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Self-directed, reliable, highly detail-oriented, and well-organized.
  • Effective communication (both written and verbal) and active listening skills.
  • Ability to work positively and collaboratively with colleagues and researchers from diverse backgrounds.
  • Ability to manage multiple tasks well, adept at quickly changing direction based on shifting priorities.
  • Willingness to learn specialized software and hardware.
  • Ability to practice discretion and maintain strict confidentiality regarding sensitive information.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Willingness to learn about and abide by departmental and professional best practices, including the Protocols for Native American Archival Material.
  • An interest in the information professions and/or cultural heritage organizations, including libraries, archives, museums, and galleries.
  • Academic background in History, Applied Indigenous Studies, Native American Studies, Ethnic Studies, Comparative Cultural Studies, Communication Studies, Journalism, Creative Media or Film, Photography, or similar fields.
  • Enthusiasm about the Cline Library and Special Collections and Archives and their missions.
  • A willingness to learn new skills and develop professionally on the job.
  • Natural inquisitiveness about the history and culture of the Colorado Plateau and Northern Arizona University.
  • Demonstrated interest in the Indigenous peoples of the Southwest, particularly the Colorado Plateau, and issues pertaining to cultural heritage.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Under the supervision of SCA staff, performs highly skilled organization of irreplaceable and often fragile historic material.
  • Practices specialized procedures when handling delicate and rare photographic, textual, film, sound recordings, born-digital, and 3D items.
  • Researches, organizes, and describes primary-source collections.
  • Uses specialized hardware and software to digitize textual, photographic, sound recording, and film material.
  • May participate alongside full-time staff in rotating service desk coverage, providing responsive research support and using good judgement when deferring to appropriate staff members.
  • Assists full-time staff in completing special projects and preparing for exhibits.
  • May use collection expertise to compile publicly-accessible blog posts for the Special Collections and Archives web page.


Application Instructions

Application Instructions

You must submit a complete application in Handshake to be considered for this position.  Your application must include:

  1. Your current resume
  2. A completed NAU Student Employment application and availability form uploaded as your "Other Document." The form is attached to this position and must be filled out completely with clear availability.
  3. An original cover letter (see tips at in your own words that answers the following questions and demonstrates that you have read and understood the job description:

How does/will Cline Library benefit you in your experience as a student at NAU?
What interests you most about working in this position?
How do your abilities and experience lend themselves to this position?
What skills and experience do you hope to gain from working in this position?

Your application will be considered only if all components are submitted according to the above instructions.