The purpose of the Susan H. Edwards Curatorial Fellowship is to introduce a student or emerging professional to the process of researching, planning, and realizing an exhibition. The fellow will be exposed to the variety of careers within an art museum during this two-semester fellowship through interactions with various departments and teams.

Selected based on professional interest and/or specialization, demonstrated writing and research skills, and an appreciation of diverse perspectives, the successful candidate will be supervised by a member of the Curatorial Team or Education Department. The fellow will work with curators, educators, and designers on all aspects of exhibition planning, including development of interpretive materials (exhibition texts, descriptions, and articles), exhibition design and graphic design, and educational programs, activities, and events for community engagement and outreach.

In addition to working with the Curatorial Team and Education Department, the fellow will interact with departments and teams throughout the museum, including Administration, Communications, Design, Development, and Finance, to learn how each contributes to the development of exhibitions and be introduced to a wide range of museum careers.

About the fellowship

Susan H. Edwards, PhD, served as the Frist Art Museum’s executive director and CEO for nearly eighteen years, retiring in 2022. We are forever grateful for her leadership and devotion to the Frist’s mission. To recognize and honor Susan’s service to the museum, donors have endowed this fellowship in her name. Susan has long been a tireless advocate for education, mentorship, and reducing barriers to the arts. At the Frist, she committed to paying our interns and fellows, which increases access to careers in the arts and improves the entire industry landscape for all.

What: A paid academic year fellowship intended to introduce a student or emerging professional to the process of researching, planning, and realizing an exhibition.

For the academic year 2024-2025 the Susan H. Edwards Fellow will work specifically on an upcoming exhibition focused on artists using new media/time-based media/machine-learning new technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and traditional media.

Who: Open to college seniors, recent graduates who intend to continue to graduate school, or graduate students. Preferred areas of concentration include art education, art history, education, fine arts, museum studies, and/or related areas.

Where: Frist Art Museum

When: August 2024 through May 2025 (16 weeks per semester, 18–20 hours per week, 320 maximum total hours per semester. Exact dates to be determined)

Fellows will be paid $15 per hour for a total of $9,600 ($4,800 per semester).

Essential Skills:

  • Strong writing
  • Good communication
  • Ability to research and work independently
  • Ability to work with others in a collaborative environment

Successful candidates must have completed a background check and submitted all application materials.

Application Process

To be considered for a fellowship, you must submit a PDF to containing all the following documents:

  • A cover letter explaining why you would like to participate in the selected internship at the Frist Art Museum, and how it fits into your long-term career goals
  • A letter of recommendation from a faculty member
  • The completed fellow application

All applications must be submitted as one digital package with the following filename format:

You will receive a notification when your application has been received. We will contact those whom we wish to interview.

Please note that this is a competitive program and submitting an application does not guarantee a fellowship.

Fall 2024 Fellowship Schedule:

Application deadline: July 8, 2024
Fellowship start date: August 23, 2024
Fellowship end date: May 9, 2025
Length of fellowship: 16 weeks per semester, 32 weeks total
Required commitment: 256 maximum total hours per semester (16 hrs./wk)

The Frist Art Museum is deeply dedicated to diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion at all levels of governance, management, and operations. 

The Frist Art Museum is an equal opportunity employer that values and seeks out a diversity of perspectives.

Please consider supporting the Frist Art Museum with a donation. Your gift is essential to our mission of serving the community through the arts and art access in particular. We truly appreciate your generosity.