Information on job, internship, and other opportunities to work at the University of Chicago's Smart Museum of Art. 

Dana Feitler Director

The University of Chicago invites applications for the Dana Feitler Director of the Smart Museum of Art.

The Smart Museum is a university art museum that supports field-defining research and teaching of faculty and students; annually presents several dynamic, often path-breaking exhibitions; and offers distinctive public programs that convey the significance of the visual arts across periods and cultures. Through its impressive collection and its intensive collaboration with scholars, the Smart has established itself as a driving force for thinking creatively about the history and exhibition of artworks, and thus contributes to Chicago’s status as one the premiere art capitals of the world.

As the chief executive of the Smart Museum, the Dana Feitler Director will promote and support education and scholarship of the highest caliber in the visual arts, and define the Smart’s position as a leader in the museum field as well as in research and education in the visual arts. The Director is responsible for providing overall leadership, vision, and guidance to the Museum and its staff. S/he is charged with ensuring that the Museum remains a vibrant and active institution in the local community and regularly engages with its peers nationally and globally. The Director serves as the principal ambassador for the Museum to students and faculty, other influential members of the campus community, the Governing Board and University Advisory Committee, alumni and major supporters, as well as the larger public. The Director is the key driver in creating a cohesive and effective organization and staff, fostering teamwork, and creating an environment in which all staff members work together effectively and efficiently in order to meet institutional goals.

The Smart Museum of Art’s next Director will be a persuasive and inventive leader who is inspired by the Museum’s mission and can inspire others as well. S/he should possess the intellectual vigor and vision, as well as the sterling reputation and personal magnetism that are necessary to encourage trust and to galvanize support for the Museum. The successful candidate will be a strategic and energetic leader who is collaborative, diplomatic, and inspires confidence. S/he must have seven to ten years of leadership experience in an art museum setting. An advanced degree in an art-related field required; a PhD is a plus, as is equivalent professional and leadership experience in a comparable setting.

This is an exciting opportunity to lead a unique institution into its next chapter with the strong commitment of the University and the Museum’s Board of Governors. The next Director will play a powerful role in helping to shape a thriving arts culture on campus and to augment that culture’s outward engagement with the prominent arts scene in Chicago’s South Side and in the city at large.  

The Smart Museum of Art, the University of Chicago has retained the executive search firm of Korn Ferry to assist in the search. Please email nominations and applications (resume and cover letter) to: Naree W.S. Viner, Principal, at SmartDirector@kornferry.com.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, protected veteran status or status as an individual with disability.  The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action / Equal Opportunity / Disabled / Veterans Employer. Job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process may contact Somaiyya Ahmad by calling 773.702.9798 or by emailing somaiyya@uchicago.edu with their request.

The Search Committee will begin reviewing candidates in late February and will continue to review applicants until the position is filled. 

Staff positions

Interim Curator of Asian Art

Please note: The Smart Museum is currently conducting an international search for a new Director. This full-time interim curatorial position has been created for approximately twelve months beginning as soon as possible and continuing through Fall 2017. 

The Interim Curator of Asian Art will serve as a coordinating curator for previously planned exhibitions and will be primarily responsible for the annual reinstallation of the Museum’s permanent collection. In collaboration with other museum colleagues, s/he will work closely with faculty, guest curators, and students to support, encourage, and develop related public programs for exhibitions and collection installations that strengthen the Museum’s engagement with Asian art.

As a member of the Smart Museum’s highly collaborative collections, exhibitions and education team, the interim curator has primary responsibility for the coordination of exhibitions, collection installations, research, and publications in this key area of the Smart Museum’s collection. In addition, working with the Smart’s Curator and Associate Director of Academic Initiatives, the curator encourages curricular and co-curricular collaboration with the Departments of Art History, Visual Arts and others whose content expertise aligns with Asian exhibition projects and collection installations. Reporting to the Interim Director of the Smart Museum (or his designee), the Interim Asian Art Curator works in close partnership with the other members of the collections, exhibition and education team.



The ideal candidate must possess:

Mental Demands:

Physical Demands:


Full-time, benefits-eligible

To apply

Submit resume and cover letter via jobopportunities.uchicago.edu (search requisition #101170).

Manager of Development

Reporting to the Director of Development and External Relations, and working in close collaboration with the Manager of Strategic Communications/Grant Writer, and other members of the D&ER team, the Development Manager bears primary responsibility for all aspects of the Smart Museum's annual fund (SmartPartners) programs as well as the maintenance and analysis of fundraising data, serving as a key expert on the University's Griffin database. This individual is also the primary contact person for members, donors, and prospects below the major gifts ($10,000) level and works with a portfolio of high-level annual fund contributors, up to $10,000.

As an essential member of the Museum's fundraising staff, the development manager develops goal-driven annual appeals that combine direct mail, email, web-based, and personal solicitations. This individual helps develop strategic stewardship practices designed to move donors toward increased levels of giving and engagement. 


Experience and Competencies


Full-time, benefits eligible. 

To apply

Submit resume, cover letter, and reference contact information via jobopportunities.uchicago.edu (search requisition #100880).

Docent program

Smart Museum docents serve as public ambassadors for the Smart Museum and assist the Museum in fulfilling its educational mission as gallery teachers for a range of K-12, University, and adult audiences. Docents also assist with the facilitation of family programming. Docents are required to complete a 12-week mandatory paid training course and attend ongoing training sessions.

Docent positions are available to University of Chicago students (undergraduates preferred) as well as Odyssey Project alumni.

The Smart is not currently seeking new docents. Applications for the next docent cohort will be made available in 2017.

University of Chicago student positions

The following jobs and internships are only available to University of Chicago students.


University of Chicago students gain direct experience in museum work through year- and summer-long internships in a variety of areas, including our curatorial, registration, education, marketing, and business offices. Qualifications vary by department; all positions are paid and require approximately 10–19 hours of work each week.

There are no open internships at this time. Please check back in the future.


Café Attendants are an integral part of the hospitality team at the Smart Museum and ensure that our patrons have a welcoming, positive experience in the Smart Café. Café attendants are responsible for serving coffee and prepared foods to patrons of the Smart Museum, as well as selling gift shop merchandise. We are looking for friendly, personable students who would enjoy working in a museum setting. Work schedules are flexible quarterly to fit around a student’s class schedule.

University of Chicago student. Strong interpersonal and customer service skills required. Interest in visual art encouraged. Previous food service or retail experience preferred, but not required. Work study eligible.

Starting immediately with year-round employment, approximately 8–15 hours per week.

Pay rate
Starts at $10/hour plus tips.

To apply
To apply, please fill out an application at the Museum’s information desk. Applications are always accepted. If you have questions, contact Kate Kelly, Café and Gift Shop Manager.

Gallery Attendants

The Smart Museum of Art’s Gallery Attendants are responsible for maintaining security within the Smart Museum gallery and lobby areas during public hours. Within this role, the Gallery Attendant acts as a public representative of the Museum and the University by greeting patrons and providing information as needed. Work schedules are flexible quarterly and can be designed to fit around a student’s class schedule. Docents who wish to receive additional working hours at the Museum are strongly encouraged to apply and will receive a premium hourly rate.

University of Chicago student. Excellent verbal communication and interpersonal skills. Interest in visual art encouraged. Ability to stand for long periods of time. Work-study encouraged, but not required.

Starting immediately with year-round employment, approximately 8–15 hours per week.

Pay rate
$10/hour; higher if a multi-session docent cross-training program is completed

To apply
To apply, please fill out an application at the Museum’s information desk. Applications are always accepted.

The University of Chicago is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity/Disabled/Veterans Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, status as an individual with a disability, protected veteran status, genetic information, or other protected classes under the law. For additional information, please see the University’s Notice of Nondiscrimination. Academic job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773.702.5671 or email ACOppAdministrator@uchicago.edu with their request. Staff job seekers in need of a reasonable accommodation to complete the application process should call 773.834.1841 or email talentacquisition@uchicago.edu with their request.