JOB May 18, 2024

Curator of Academic Programs, Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College

Oberlin, Ohio, United States
Application deadline: Jun 15, 2024

Andria Derstine, Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College

The Allen Memorial Art Museum (AMAM) at Oberlin College seeks a creative and collaborative museum professional who is dedicated to interdisciplinary teaching to fill the role of Curator of Academic Programs. This is a continuing, full-time, 12-month Administrative and Professional Staff position reporting to the director of the museum.

AMAM staff are committed to enhancing students’ learning, engagement, and critical thinking skills through broad examination of the museum’s comprehensive art collection and its integration into the College curriculum through innovative academic programs. The incumbent is responsible for strengthening the academic role of the museum within the College by conceptualizing and developing programs and activities in a variety of disciplines. As the primary liaison between the museum and faculty and students, the successful candidate must have highly developed administrative and organizational capabilities, and be an excellent collaborator who thrives in an object-based learning environment. Outreach to colleagues in the Arts and Sciences and the Conservatory of Music is intended to enable faculty to develop courses and classes that use the collection in new and creative ways, while being responsive to the AMAM’s strategic plan as well as the institution’s curricular goals. The successful candidate will have a deep commitment to interdisciplinary teaching and a contextual, cross-disciplinary approach to original works of art.

Specific responsibilities include:
• Meeting and working closely with faculty to facilitate use of collections
• Frequently leading and co-facilitating discussion-based sessions for classes in the AMAM galleries and Print Study Room
• Planning and overseeing faculty development initiatives including new faculty orientation, curriculum development grants, and pedagogical workshops
• Conceptualizing, initiating, and managing the installation of teaching exhibitions that support courses and highlight current and new research
• Implementing new strategies that encourage faculty and student use of the museum in innovative ways
• Working closely with the Assistant Curator of Academic Programs to schedule class visits to the museum and manage the Print Study Room
• Supervising one full-time assistant curator and two part-time student assistants each year, and overseeing the recruiting and training of same; co-supervising, with the Curator of Education, the museum’s Coordinator of Student and Community Connection
• Liaising with staff colleagues, including the museum’s registrars and preparators regarding art movements, and with collection curators and Education department staff regarding teaching and public programs
• Contributing to development and fund-raising initiatives, including active participation with grant-writing, management, and reporting
• Conducting assessment and evaluation of the work of the Office of Academic Programs, including keeping statistics relating to its work, and gathering and analyzing quantitative and qualitative data
• Active membership in the larger museum community, including attending conferences and presenting on innovative programs and initiatives
• Other duties as assigned

• Ph.D. degree in an object-focused field of study (such art history, studio art, history, anthropology, or archaeology)
• 5 years of professional museum experience beyond internships with at least 3 years of teaching in museums or higher education
• Broad knowledge of art and material cultural as represented in the AMAM’s collection, and a willingness to learn about subjects and materials outside established areas of expertise
• Understanding of the learning needs of college-aged students
• Highly developed communication skills across platforms including in-person, email, telephone, and Zoom and in response to the needs of different audiences
• Excellent collaboration and organizational skills and ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously
• High degree of professionalism, attention to detail, and ability to meet deadlines
• Strong interpersonal skills, collegiality toward colleagues, and a demonstrated ability to work effectively individually and as part of a team
• Supervisory experience
• Demonstrated commitment to fostering a welcoming, inclusive learning environment for all Oberlin students
• Ability to work occasional evening and weekend hours
• Ability to lift and carry objects weighing up to 25 pounds

Desired qualifications:
• Art-handling experience, especially of works on paper
• Experience using TMS (The Museum System), Slack, and Trello or other project management software
• Foreign language skills

Quick Link for Posting:

Compensation: Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience and is expected to range from $65,000 to $68,000; the position includes an excellent benefits package.

To Apply: Candidates should submit: 1) a cover letter, 2) a curriculum vitae, 3) a teaching statement that includes how you create a supportive learning environment for students of all backgrounds, and 4) contact information for three references by June 15, 2024 through Oberlin College’s job portal at All applications must be received through the portal. Applications received after the deadline may be considered.

About the Allen Memorial Art Museum (AMAM): For more than a century, Oberlin College has been committed to promoting direct study of original works of art to foster visual literacy and a deeper understanding of the diversity of the world’s cultures. Today the AMAM houses an encyclopedic collection of more than 15,000 works selected to provide a comprehensive overview of the history of art and is recognized as one of the best academic museums in the country. The AMAM serves a broad regional audience and operates on the premise that learning about art is important for everyone, a principle demonstrated by free public admission, offered since its founding in 1917.

In addition to serving a broad public, the AMAM’s collection is used in teaching in nearly all Oberlin College disciplines in the Arts and Sciences and the Conservatory of Music, including Africana studies, anthropology, art, biology, chemistry, cinema studies, comparative American studies, creative writing, environmental studies, foreign languages and literatures, history, Latin American studies, mathematics, music and historical performance, politics, and religion, among others.

The museum complex includes a 1917 building designed by Cass Gilbert. In the 1970s, Robert Venturi designed a gallery dedicated to the presentation of modern and contemporary art, the architect’s first museum commission. The AMAM also shares responsibility with Oberlin College for a Frank Lloyd Wright-designed house, the first Usonian house in Ohio, located in Oberlin.

Founded in 1833, Oberlin College is a private, four-year, highly selective national liberal arts college near Cleveland, Ohio, and is also home to an outstanding Conservatory of Music. Together, the two divisions enroll approximately 2,900 students. Oberlin College was the first college in the U.S. to make interracial education and co-education central to its mission. The College continues to view a diverse, equitable, and inclusive educational environment as essential to the excellence of its academic program. Among liberal arts colleges, Oberlin is a national leader in successfully placing graduates into Ph.D. programs.

Oberlin College is committed to professional staff, faculty, and student diversity, equity, and inclusion. The incumbent will bring understanding of or experience working with underrepresented and diverse academic populations. Oberlin is especially interested in candidates who can contribute to the excellence and diversity of the academic community. Oberlin recruits, employs, trains, compensates, and promotes regardless of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, veteran’s status, and/or other protected status as required by applicable law.

JOB: Curator of Academic Programs, Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College. In:, May 18, 2024 (accessed Jun 20, 2024), <>.