Employment Opportunities

Thank you for your interest in joining the Institute for American Indian Studies Staff!

We are currently seeking applicants in our Visitor Services and Education departments. Review of applications will occur as they are received. Please be advised that due to the high volume of applicants, we are only able to contact those candidates whose skills and background best fit the needs of the open positions.

Retail Sales Associate and Buyer

The Institute for American Indian Studies in Washington, CT is seeking a qualified Retail Sales Associate and Buyer to work in the Gift Shop. This position is part-time, including Saturday and Sunday, with additional hours as needed (i.e. special events, fundraisers, etc.). The Retail Sales Associate and Buyer is responsible for greeting visitors to the museum and overseeing functions of the gift shop including sales, ordering, inventory control and maintaining accurate records.

The Gift Shop at IAIS is the first point of contact for visitors. The shop is where visitors are greeted, admission is paid and they are oriented to the museum exhibits and grounds. The Gift Shop is a critical part of IAIS’ operations: generating profit, extending the visitor’s experience, inspiring buying and providing high quality merchandise that reflects the visitor’s interests.

Major Responsibilities

General Overseeing of the Museum Gift Shop

  • Welcoming visitors and groups, collecting admission fees and orienting visitors to museum exhibits while providing excellent customer service
  • Managing Online Retail Sales
  • Assisting the public with selection of books, jewelry, gifts and other merchandise
  • Selecting vendors and merchandise including researching new items to purchase and negotiating merchandise price while supervised by the Executive Director
  • Checking in and pricing of merchandise upon receiving
  • Maintaining database of inventory
  • Organizing and planning the display and presentation of merchandise with consideration to audiences served and recognizing customer demand
  • Designing and implementing a series of changing creative displays regularly with consideration to the buying audience and season
  • Maintaining product quality levels in conformity with IAIS’ mission and vision
  • Keeping both the shop and the shop storeroom orderly and clean
  • Leading yearly shop inventory
  • Performing miscellaneous job-related duties as needed
  • Maintaining good relationships with Native American Artists

Skills Required:

  • Knowledge of cash management procedures and policies
  • Ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing
  • Knowledge of customer service standards and procedures
  • Ability to operate a computerized cash register and familiarity with QuickBooks and Microsoft Office
  • Capable of handling money received accurately and accountable for gift shop receipts
  • Strong organizational and administrative skills for smooth operation of gift shop
  • Knowledge of retail floor sales techniques, retail stock management and control procedures—online retail sales experience strongly preferred.
  • Ability to lift 25 lbs., standing for long periods of time, etc.

Please send resume and two professional references to [email protected]   Review of applicants will begin immediately.

Museum Educator

Museum Educators are hourly, seasonal positions that vary weekly between the hours of 9 a.m. - 2 p.m during the academic year (Sept. - Dec. & Mar. - Jun.). Summer and weekend hours vary based on programming needs.

Educators are responsible for presenting dynamic, hands-on, educational programs and activities to schools and community, youth, and adult groups at the Institute for American Indian Studies, and at designated off-site venues. Museum Educators are responsible for assisting in the overall work of the Education Department and report to the Education Coordinator and IAIS Administration.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conducting museum programs, in-house and outreach, workshops, and summer programs for students in pre-K through grade 12 around a variety of themes related to school curricula
  • Assisting in the development of programs, as requested
  • Leading related age-appropriate hands-on activities and primary source workshops
  • Assisting in set-up and clean-up for educational activities and in the preparation of teaching materials, including preparing supplies and photocopying
  • Attending educational department meetings and, if available, staff meetings
  • Performing other duties as assigned by the Education Coordinator and IAIS Administration
  • Assisting with weekend events as needed


  • Basic content knowledge and eagerness to learn about Connecticut and New England’s indigenous peoples
  • Basic content knowledge and eagerness to learn about archaeology
  • Skills as a teacher in nontraditional classroom settings and desire to work with children
  • Excellent communications skills with an ability to adapt lessons and programs to different ages and learning styles in a hands-on, active environment
  • Experience and comfort working with children and adults in a school or informal learning setting
  • Experience working with diverse communities, and/or shared heritage, knowledge and understanding of Native American cultures
  • Dedication to public service and a commitment to reaching diverse audiences
  • Flexibility, creativity and willingness to prototype new educational methods
  • Reliability and personal organization skills to ensure that all commitments are met
  • Driver’s license and car for reimbursed travel to outreach programs preferred
  • Requires lifting of 15+ lbs. and 4+ hours of uninterrupted tour leading, hiking and standing
  • B.A. in history, education, anthropology (or related field) preferred; and/or demonstrated special interest and respect for Native American cultures and issues

Please send resume and two professional references to [email protected]   Review of applicants will begin immediately.