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Boston Landmarks Commission Volunteer and Internship Opportunities

Are you interested in promoting the benefits of preserving Boston's built heritage? Here's how to do it!

Boston's built environment is filled with hidden history. From the times of the Massachusett people through the Massachusetts Bay Colony to modern times, history is all around us. Here you will find everything you need to lend a helping hand with everything from research and writing, to community events that share the stories of Boston's historic resources. 

Participate

Participate

Internships are designed around the needs of both the student and the department. We prioritize Boston-based colleges and universities. But, we will consider applicants from schools throughout New England. Topics to be researched are wide-ranging but must focus on an element of historic preservation or adaptive reuse. 

To be considered, the following items are required.

  1. Please reach out to our staff at BLC@Boston.gov to start the process. We will conduct an informal talk to determine if the needs of the student and department are aligned. 
  2. Provide a letter of recommendation from your professor. We need contact information and a commitment to grading the deliverables of the intern's work.
  3. We need a copy of your class syllabus with deadlines for any particular project you may be working on.  
  4. Provide a writing sample.
  5. Offer an objective statement outlining the type of research you will be conducting.

Internships are unpaid and self-paced. But, applicants must commit in advance to a number of hours per week that are conducive to the research. Deliverables are due to staff at the end of the semester.

Volunteer opportunities are self-paced. Due to the size of our staff, it is not possible to mentor volunteers on research methods or resources. Topics are based on the needs of the department. Refer to our research needs at the bottom of this page for examples of the type of work that are needed. 

We also have opportunities to volunteer for community outreach events throughout the year. Past events have included:

  • History on the Common
  • Abandoned subway tunnel tours
  • Preservation month walking tours
  • Landmark building tours 
  • Historic preservation forums
  • Historic surveying 

If you wish to be added to a stand-by list to volunteer at events, please email blc@boston.gov

Volunteer Research Opportunities

Volunteer Research Opportunities

The following topics are suggestions for areas of research:

  • Survey of downtown historic paving materials
  • City-wide survey of ghost signs
  • Pending landmark study reports
  • Preservation tools and technique workshops
  • Survey form updates and expansions
  • Document scanning and filing
  • Photo survey of historic buildings
  • Historic storefront survey
  • Historic district mailer design
  • Archeological dig assistance (through the Archeology Department)
  • Policy Research

Below are some examples of research completed by our volunteers:

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