Virginia Thoren and Institute Archivist — Pratt Institute Libraries, Brooklyn, NY

Virginia Thoren and Institute Archivist (71101)

Location: Brooklyn, NY


The Pratt Institute Libraries are seeking an innovative, collaborative, and service-oriented leader to serve as the Virginia Thoren Archivist, responsible for collecting, preserving, curating, and disseminating materials related to the history of Pratt Institute. The Archives preserve and contextualize the institutional history of Pratt Institute through its growing body of collections, which include, but are not limited to: the administrative records and publications of the Institute’s departments, schools, and programs; select papers of Pratt faculty, alumni, and members of the Pratt family who were active at the Institute; and photographs and audiovisual materials documenting the activities of the Institute.

The individual assuming this position will be expected to play an instrumental role in continuing to develop the vision of the Archives by exploring innovative ways to describe and provide access to collections; collaborating with faculty and students to engage with and create outreach opportunities for the collections; bringing in new collections that fill gaps in the institutional record; expanding the current archives program to include diverse voices and experiences; putting in place robust procedures around ingesting and preserving born-digital records; and collaborating with staff members across the Libraries to re-envision the physical and virtual spaces in which Special Collections and Archives are stored, accessed, and exhibited. Persons with experience and scholarship directly related to helping Pratt achieve the goals outlined in the Institute’s Diversity Strategic Plan are encouraged to apply.

This is a hybrid position that allows for up to 1 day of remote work per week.

Position Duties:

Collection Management and Development

• Develop and maintain written policies around acquisition, processing, description, and access of institutional records in all formats, and collaborate with departments across campus to ensure that relevant materials are deposited in the Institute’s Archive.
• In partnership with academic and administrative units across the campus, seek alumni, faculty, and organizational collections that help to put the history of Pratt Institute in a broader context, including its relationship to its surrounding neighborhood and community.

Access and Discovery

• Participate in and oversee the accessioning, arranging, and description of newly transferred and acquired records and papers in analog and digital formats into ArchivesSpace, following agreed upon workflows, metadata standards, priorities and levels of processing.

Teaching, Outreach, and Reference Services

• Promote the use of primary source materials as teaching and research tools, and partner with Library and Institute Faculty to incorporate these materials into the curriculum through the development of assignments and instruction programs, including occasionally playing the role of an embedded archivist in specific courses.
• Provide public assistance and respond to reference queries for researchers coming from inside and outside the Institute.


• Manage a full-time Project Archivist, and play a mentoring role in the supervision of Graduate Assistants pursuing related degrees in the School of Information.
• Participate in Institute- and Library-wide committees, as well as search committees as needed.


• Minimum four years experience working directly with appraising and processing archival collections, and demonstrated application and knowledge of such best practices and standards as EAD and DACs in the creation of finding aids, and basic preservation for archival and manuscript collections.
• Knowledge of best practices and current trends related to archives reference and outreach, as well as accessioning born-digital materials.
• Strong organizational and project management skills and the ability to set and modify work priorities independently with a high degree of initiative.
• Outstanding interpersonal skills and able to work in a highly collaborative environment.
• Excellent oral and written communication, including public speaking and scholarly communications.
• Flexible and able to adapt to changing priorities.
• Knowledge of principles of diversity and inclusion; ability to work well with diverse populations; and demonstrated level of cultural competence.
• Ability to lift boxes weighing up to 40 lbs, with or without reasonable accommodation.

Preferred Qualifications

• Experience working in an academic institution or university archive.
• Teaching experience.
• Significant experience working with ArchivesSpace.
• Demonstrated experience ingesting and processing born-digital records.
• Significant experience managing full-time staff and/or student employees or interns.
• Record of publication or other relevant contributions to the profession.
• Experience writing grants or participating in the administration of existing grants.
• Knowledge of records management best practices.


• ALA accredited Master’s degree in Library Science or equivalent graduate degree in archives administration from an accredited college/university, or a combination of a relevant, accredited graduate degree in another scholarly field (e.g., history) from an accredited college/university and significant archival experience.

Salary, Benefits, and Faculty Support:

Salary is competitive and commensurate with experience and qualifications. The salary range for this position is $81,000-84,000. Pratt Institute provides a comprehensive benefits package with the flexibility to meet the varying needs of a diverse group of individual employees.

Benefits include:

• 403B Retirement Program
• Supplemental Retirement Account
• Tuition Benefits for Employees and Dependents
• Tuition Exchange Program
• Flexible Spending Accounts – commuter, medical, dependent care
• Child care Benefit
• Basic life and AD&D insurance provided by Pratt
• Medical, Dental, and Vision Care Coverage
• Reduced teaching load in first year (1 course release)
• Sabbatical leave, as described in the Collective Bargaining Agreement
• Additional Perks – free entry to select museums and cultural institutions, free use of campus recreation facilities

About Pratt Institute:

Pratt Institute provides the creative leaders of tomorrow the professional knowledge and experience to make a better world. A world-class and internationally ranked college with programs in art, design, architecture, liberal arts and sciences, and information studies, Pratt offers nearly 50 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

The Institute’s impact expands beyond its 25-acre residential campus in Brooklyn to cutting-edge facilities throughout the borough, a landmark building and public gallery in Manhattan, as well as an extension campus, Pratt Munson College of Art and Design in Utica, New York. On Governors Island, Pratt is a core partner on the Stony Brook University team selected to develop the New York Climate Exchange, a research and educational hub poised to establish New York City as the global leader for the most pressing issue of our time: climate change. Another extension of Pratt’s campus is the Research Yard, a 20,000-square-foot facility that brings together the research activities of Pratt Institute under one roof in the Brooklyn Navy Yard (BNY).

Application Instructions:

To apply, visit this web-site.

Equal Employment Opportunity Statement

We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate in hiring or employment on the basis of race, color, creed, religion or belief, national or ethnic origin, citizenship status, marital or domestic partnership status, sexual orientation, sex, gender identity or expression, age, disability, military or veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law. Pratt Institute recognizes and values the benefits of a diverse workforce.

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