Curator; Yale Library Special Collections
Yale University (New Haven, CT)
February 6, 2025
Post date: February 6, 2024

Curator; Yale Library Special Collections


University Job Title: Librarian, Curator
Bargaining Unit: None - Not included in the union (Yale Union Group)
Time Type: Full time
Duration Type: Regular
Compensation Grade: library
Wage Ranges: Click here to see our Wage Ranges
Work Location: Central Campus
Worksite Address: 121 Wall Street
New Haven, CT 06511
Work Week: Standard (M-F equal number of hours per day)
Searchable Job Family: Library
Total # of Hours to be Works: 37.5

Position Focus:
The Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University invites applications for a cluster of four curators to build, interpret, and steward the library's extraordinary collections in one or more of the following areas of focus:




  • Indigenous history and culture, including North America. European history and culture, pre-1800. Caribbean and/or Black Atlantic World. Medieval studies. U.S. history and culture, especially pre-1900. Ethnicity, race, and migration. Gender and sexuality. History of science. Environmental studies. Visual culture, including history of photography. Material history, including print culture, book history, and critical bibliography.

    The four curators hired through this cluster will join a talented team of four curators, working collaboratively to build collections of lasting importance, relevance, and interconnectivity. Reporting to the Director of Collections and Chief Curator, these open positions reflect the Beinecke Library's ongoing commitment to an ambitious collecting agenda that foregrounds diverse perspectives and historical voices, upholds the highest ethical and professional standards, and thoughtfully engages with the complex nature of building research collections today.

    Working with Beinecke Library colleagues to identify historic gaps and areas of strategic opportunity, successful candidates will envision and realize a collection development strategy; help faculty, students, and researchers make effective use of the collections in the reading room, the classroom, and online; interpret the collections through exhibitions, programming, community engagement, and teaching; collaborate with colleagues to set priorities for cataloging, processing, conserving, and digitizing the collections; foster organizational collegiality and inclusivity; contribute to the successful fruition of library and departmental initiatives; and complete other duties as assigned.

    DEIA Commitment in Recruitment: Yale University Library serves a diverse staff, campus, local, and global community and is deeply committed to advancing its goals for equity, inclusion, and accessibility. This commitment is reflected in our mission, strategic directions, staff values, initiatives, and scholarly activity. To support our goals for staff recruitment, retention, and development, Yale Library invites applications from candidates who have a proven commitment or demonstrated success with supporting diversity and inclusion through their work, service, research, and/or teaching.

    This position will be assigned the rank of Librarian 3 to 5 based on a combination of professional experience and qualifications. Librarian ranking information can be found at

    Essential Duties:
    1. Collection Development and Stewardship: The curator‘s collection development responsibilities encompass active research and selection of materials across a broad range of formats, including manuscripts, archives, visual materials, and digital media, as well as all formats of print materials from books to ephemera; dealer and donor relations, including establishing fair price and market value, understanding the total cost of acquisition, drafting deeds of gift and purchase agreements, and keeping abreast of evolving legal and ethical considerations for provenance, international export guidelines, intellectual property rights, privacy, and respectful stewardship of cultural heritage materials. To develop and steward a diverse and growing collection, the curator will broaden their areas of expertise to meet evolving collecting, teaching, and research priorities. The curator collaborates with colleagues in other units of the Library as well as with colleagues across Yale’s cultural heritage institutions to ensure that the collections are discoverable, accurately and appropriately described, and well preserved.2. Teaching and Research: The curator will foster the use of the collection by Yale faculty, students, as well as local, national, and international researchers. In collaboration with Education Program staff, the curator will take the lead on multiple classes each semester. The curator will prepare and lead instruction sessions for faculty, including evaluating and selecting and setting up materials, developing lesson plans, collaborating with instructors on assignments and learning objectives, assessing the success of instruction strategies and approaches, and drawing on other library staff as co-instructors as appropriate. The role will work with faculty and other campus partners to identify areas where special collections and archives can support course instruction, strengthen instructional collaborations across the university, and integrate collections and resources into new and existing classes and programs. The curator will also present materials to other groups who visit the library, collaborate with colleagues to respond to general reference and instruction requests, and participate in the library’s fellowship selection committee.3. Activate and Interpret the Collections: The curator is responsible for interpreting the holdings of the collection for both the international scholarly community and the broader public. The curator may conceive and organize exhibitions; collaborate with faculty, students, and external scholars to organize conferences, symposia, and lectures; and write and edit various publications about the collection. The curator may be called upon to issue news releases, grant interviews, conduct tours, and make presentations. The curator is encouraged to maintain an active research agenda.4. Collaboration: The curator is expected to function in a collegial fashion as part of a larger team of curators and librarians to sustain a broad program of collection development, scholarly and educational outreach, description, digitization, preservation, and research in the humanities. Demonstrated consensus-building and problem-solving skills, experience coordinating multiple projects, and the ability to bring projects to fruition are vital to the success of this position.5. Service to the Department, University, and Profession. In addition to activities relating directly to the Beinecke Library, the curator participates in library projects, committees, policy decisions and strategic planning and may be assigned special projects relating to the overall needs of the library. The curator is also expected to participate actively in professional organizations as appropriate.

    Required Education and Experience:
    Master’s degree in a related course of study.

    Required Skill/Ability 1:

    Minimum of 5 years of professional experience. The candidate should possess demonstrated knowledge of one or more areas named above.

    Required Skill/Ability 2:

    Reading knowledge of at least one language beyond English

    Required Skill/Ability 3:

    Superb analytical, creative, and communication skills in both writing and public speaking. This may be demonstrated through teaching, publications, exhibitions, public programming, or collaborative projects.

    Required Skill/Ability 4:

    Demonstrated commitment to teaching, in higher education and community outreach.

    Required Skill/Ability 5:

    Adept collaborator with ability to foster organizational collegiality.

    Preferred Education, Experience and Skills:
    Ph.D. in a related area. Advanced language skills in one of the following: Latin, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Indigenous North American languages (any), Latin, Arabic, Hebrew, Chinese, or Japanese. Experience with donor relations, commercial market and book trade, and related legal and ethical issues. Proficiency in using library or museum discovery and documentation systems.

    Drug Screen: No
    Health Screening: No

    Background Check Requirements:
    All candidates for employment will be subject to pre-employment background screening for this position, which may include motor vehicle, DOT certification, drug testing and credit checks based on the position description and job requirements. All offers are contingent upon the successful completion of the background check. For additional information on the background check requirements and process visit "Learn about background checks" under the Applicant Support Resources section of Careers on the It's Your Yale website.

    COVID-19 Vaccine Requirement:
    The University maintains policies pertaining to COVID-19. All faculty, staff, students, and trainees are required to comply with these policies, which may be found here:

    Posting Disclaimer:
    The intent of this job description is to provide a representative summary of the essential functions that will be required of the position and should not be construed as a declaration of specific duties and responsibilities of the particular position. Employees will be assigned specific job-related duties through their hiring departments.

    To apply, visit

    Yale is a tobacco-free campus.

    Copyright ©2022 Inc. All rights reserved.

    Posted by the FREE value-added recruitment advertising agency




Job, fellowship, and CFP listings are services that are offered by the American Studies Association to support its members in exploring professional opportunities in American studies. Any questions should be directed to the program, department, or center that has posted the opportunity.