Spectrum & Diversity Scholars Community

Program Head, Special Collections; Institute Archives and Special Collections - MIT (apply by Dec. 1 for priority consideration)

  • 1.  Program Head, Special Collections; Institute Archives and Special Collections - MIT (apply by Dec. 1 for priority consideration)

    Posted Nov 01, 2017 08:16 AM

    Program Head, Special Collections


    The MIT Libraries are seeking an ambitious and creative special collections professional to lead and manage the strategy and workflows related to the development, acquisition and management of the Libraries’ rare and special collections. This is an exciting time at the MIT Libraries. MIT has a bold new vision for the library as an open global platform rooted in our shared values and mission; supported by innovative approaches to community and relationships, discovery and use, and stewardship and sustainability; and informed and enabled by an expanded emphasis on research and development. To advance this vision, the Libraries have committed resources to building organizational capacity in archives and special collections.

    The Program Head is responsible for the appraisal, acquisition, processing, description, curation, management, preservation and conservation of the Libraries’ rare and special collections, including visual collections, and recommends priorities, policies and procedures related to their management. The Program Head will have leadership and supervisory responsibilities for the MIT Libraries cataloging, preservation, and conservation staff responsible for the stewardship of the MIT Libraries distinctive and special collections materials. They will coordinate with colleagues in the Institute Archives and Special Collections and collections strategists, and will act as a liaison to subject liaisons for issues regarding rare and special collection development and management. Outreach, instruction and teaching are important components of this position as well as the responsibility for the promoting and interpreting rare and unique collections through innovative and engaging physical and digital exhibitions, educational programming, and social media. In support of the MIT Libraries’ commitment to diversity, inclusion and social justice, the Program Head will engage in collection development that seeks to identify and acquire materials from underrepresented constituencies, and promote collection management policies and practices that encourage the widest access to materials. The Program Head will work to ensure optimal access to materials and information, collaborating with IASC and library staff to integrate archival, rare book, and special collections practices towards seamless access. It is expected that the Program Head will engage professionally with organizations to further their foundational knowledge of trends and issues in order to contribute to strategic change and to advance the profession. The Program Head will assist with grant development and fundraising efforts and will participate in the IASC reference services as needed. They will have full supervisory responsibility for a small unit of conservation and preservation staff, and potentially other staff, as the Libraries reorganizes. This position reports directly to the Head, Institute Archives and Special Collections.

    QUALIFICATIONS include a Master’s Degree in Library, Archival or Information Science or equivalent with graduate-level libraries or archives coursework or equivalent education and work experience, three years of professional experience working with the development, acquisition, management, preservation and conservation of special collections, and some combination of:
    • Ability to cultivate and sustain productive relationships with donors, faculty, administrative and academic staff.
    • Familiarity with cataloging or archival content management systems and technologies applicable for the special collections environment.
    • Knowledge of descriptive metadata standards for example DCRM, MARC, VRA, DACS, Dublin Core.
    • Knowledge of issues re: security, confidentiality, intellectual property, and access rights.
    • Excellent interpersonal skills to collaborate and work effectively within and across organizational boundaries in a diverse organization and with a wide variety of users.
    • Enthusiasm for embracing the empathy, courage, self-reflection and respect the essential in a multicultural, diverse and inclusive workplace, and ability to embrace those values in collections and public service work.
    • Demonstrated ability to be flexible, tolerate ambiguity, adapt to change and successfully work in a fast-paced, dynamic environment.
    • Strong organizational and analytical skills with proven success in independently prioritizing work and managing competing deadlines.
    • Supervisory experience or demonstrated potential to be an effective supervisor.
    • Experience working in an academic environment.
    • Project management skills or experience.
    • Knowledge of the history of the book; the history of science.

    SALARY AND BENEFITS: $60,000 minimum. Actual appointment level and salary will depend on qualifications and experience. MIT offers excellent benefits including a choice of health and retirement plans, a dental plan, tuition assistance, and fully subsidized MBTA passes for local bus and subway service. Flexible work arrangements, including flex-time and telecommuting, are considered for positions that meet established criteria. The MIT Libraries is a collegial and supportive working environment and fosters professional growth of staff with management training and travel funding for professional meetings.

    APPLICATION PROCESS: Apply online at: http://careers.mit.edu/. Applications must include cover letter and resume. Priority will be given to applications received by December 1, 2017; position open until filled. MIT is strongly and actively committed to diversity within its community and particularly welcomes applications from qualified women and minority candidates. Professionals who enthusiastically embrace the empathy, courage, self-reflection and respect of a multi-cultural, diverse and inclusive workplace, and who strive to incorporate those values in their work and interactions are encouraged to apply.

    The MIT Libraries are dedicated to advancing research, teaching, and learning at MIT and beyond. In addition to supporting every part of the Institute with distinctive collections, world-class service and expertise, and welcoming spaces, the Libraries seek to define the global research library of the future. We aim to play a leading role in advancing knowledge to solve global challenges by enhancing the discovery, use, collection, creation, management, dissemination, and preservation of information across disciplines. Library staff at all levels contribute to this mission and to a culture that values openness, inclusion, innovation, and community.