Gain experience outside the classroom and immerse yourself in our local community by finding an internship with the history department. You'll have the opportunity to partner with organizations such as museums, historical societies or local non-profits in the Grand Rapids area.

Looking for a summer internship?

Try Handshake. Many opportunities, paid and unpaid, are listed in this online job posting service for Calvin students. Interested in earning History elective credit for your summer internship? Talk to Professor Kate van Liere.

History 393: History Internship

HIST-393 is an internship course specfically for history majors offered each Spring semester. By special arrangment, it can also be taken as an independent study in the summer or Fall semester. In this course, you will secure an internship and work 140 hours in organizations such as museums, historical societies, or local non-profits.

For additional information, contact Professor Kate van Liere or Professor Darrell Rohl.

Course Requirements

  • Apply for internship position(s) directly with the employers early in the fall semester
  • Submit your HIST 393 application to the History Department by November 15
  • Secure an internship position by January 1
  • Work in your internship position 10 hours/week for 14 weeks (total 140 hours)
  • Participate in triweekly group meetings with internship director
  • Weekly reflective journal (about 15 pages total)
  • Final reflective essay (about 15 pages total)
  • Performance evaluation by internship supervisor

Where to find an internship

In recent years, Calvin history students have interned with organizations such as the Grand Rapids Public Museum, Michigan Historic Preservation Network, and Kentwood Historic Preservation Commission.

Several local museums offer regular internship positions. More information can be found on each museum's website: (Not all museums offer internships each semester, so be sure to check the details for your preferred museum.)

Visit Calvin's Career Center for additional information about finding an internship. You can also talk with Professor Kate van Liere for guidance.

Application process

Begin to search and apply for internships now. There are many opportunities for unpaid and paid internships on Handshake. Apply for specific internships directly with the employer before you apply for HIST 393. (The employer sets the required application materials and deadline; you will include a copy of these in your separate application for the course.)

You must also apply separately for HIST 393 (independent study) by November 15. The application form can be downloaded here or picked up in the history department office (HH 481). Application materials for HIST 393 must include:

  • your resume or c.v.
  • one-page statement of interest
  • copies of material submitted to internship employer

Your completed application can be turned in via email to or dropped off in person in the history department office.