Archivist / Collections Manager
Publishing and Museums | New York, NY | Part Time
Sesame Workshop is looking for an Archivist/ Collections Manager. The Archivist / Collections Manager will be responsible for initiating a project to assess, inventory, and maintain the Workshop’s diverse collection of assets. Currently, the on-site archive houses a collection of more than 100,000 photographs, slides, transparencies and native-digital photography of Sesame Workshop’s productions and personnel; more than 10,000 pieces of original book illustration; limited concept art and storyboards; some set and character models, as well as blueprints; music lead sheets; animation cells; and assorted print materials, including scripts, correspondence, published articles, and other documents.
Please Note: This is a part-time, 18-month contract position. Hours could be 25 to 30 hours a week.
The part-time position will liaise with a variety of in-house departments and stakeholders to ensure long-term viability of the myriad assets and artwork, coordinate storage, create collection acquisition and retention policies, catalog assets in electronic databases, fulfill internal and external asset requests, and manage the onsite physical archive.
Sesame Workshop’s 50-year history includes the development, research, production and distribution of numerous acclaimed educational programs produced for television and an array of other media, including but not limited to print, web, audio, and digital channels.
Assess the collection and create long term collection policy statements to guide acquisition, retention, preservation, and deaccessioning strategies. (65%) This may include:
- Assess, categorize, label collections, including identifying, scanning, and describing individual collections and pieces
- Develop plan to re-house collections, as analysis deems necessary
- Process collections into existing systems, databases and metadata and/or propose new solutions; produce and maintain electronic finding aids
- Coordinate with other internal database teams to coordinate systems and policies for long-term preservation and access
- Assist in selection and presentation of external exhibits and displays
- Identify and pursue potential grant opportunities to maintain and expand the archive
Conduct archival research to fulfill various external and internal needs, with a focus on the company-wide 50th anniversary celebration in 2019. This includes locating and labeling assets to respond quickly, accurately, and thoroughly to external publicity requests from news and promotion agencies, researchers, historians, fans, filmmakers, publishers, etc. (35%)
Interaction with Internal Teams:
- Work closely with many internal departments, including Marketing, Publicity, International, Museums & Exhibits, Television Production, Technical Operations, Information Services, and others to ensure efficient cataloging, asset delivery, and request fulfillment
- Work with Facilities Manager and records managers to refine records management policies, audit storage facilities for security and environmental controls, and establish guidelines for the creation and tracking of records transfers to and from storage.
- Represent the archive and collections needs at internal and external meetings
- Potentially supervise and train student interns and/or internal volunteers
- Requires the ability to lift, push, pull and/or physically maneuver boxes of materials (a maximum of about 35 lbs.)
- Sometimes work in storage facilities and other environments that may involve exposure to dust or mold
- Frequent bending, stooping, and stretching
- Mainly normal office environment / occasional storage facilities
- BS degree (MLS or Certified Records Manager certification is preferred) and a minimum of 2 years of related work experience in an archive or academic research library
- Membership in industry trade organization(s) preferred: ALA, SAA, SLA, Siggraph, etc.
- Familiarity with techniques for proper handling of photography, art and paper records
- Knowledge of best practices in digital preservation strategies for non-digitally-born material and for management of digitally born materials
- Familiarity with metadata standards and any archival system (METS, EAD/XML, PREMIS, MARC, or others)
- Working knowledge of Mac OS or Windows and facility with Excel.
- Strong technical skills in digital asset management systems, ideally with facility to automate or script tasks to speed ingestion of large sets of metadata / records / files
- Ability to exercise judgment and discretion when handling confidential materials
- Well-developed interpersonal and writing skills are essential for efficient interdepartmental communication and teamwork
- Courteous and helpful attitude in fulfillment of external requests and interfacing with the public.
- Organized, detail-oriented, affinity for critical thinking and problem solving
- An interest in children’s media, education, and/or pop culture is appreciated. A sense of humor is a plus!