David Nicholls Curatorial Internship

Since 2010, we’ve had an opening for a Curatorial Internship at the South Georgia Museum. Offered to recent graduates of  Museum Studies courses or those with equivalent work experience, in the early stages of their museum career. The position is usually advertised in April or May on our website and social media sites.  

The internship is named in memory of the founder of South Georgia Heritage Trust (SGHT), Brigadier David Nicholls RM. David, an expert mountaineer, led two British Exploring Society groups of young people to the rugged island of South Georgia. He felt South Georgia’s challenging terrain and history of human achievement and fallibility provided a fantastic learning ground. The internship is accompanied by a bursary, funded by SGHT.

The internship offers a very broad experience in many aspects of museum practice and provides a unique opportunity for many young people to launch their successful careers.

Matthew Moran

For Matthew Moran this opportunity was just what he needed:

“The Curatorial Internship was the key point in my museum career – when I applied there were no other opportunities that were both open at entry-level and also offered genuine responsibility and ownership of the role.

The Curatorial Internship bridged the experience gap between the internships/voluntary roles in junior positions in which I was stuck and the actual paid professional roles I was seeking…. it was absolutely the defining period of my working life, and I continue to feel the benefit of it.”

Lorna Weir

Working at the South Georgia Museum enabled Lorna Weir to develop key skills, knowledge and confidence for her future career pursuits:

“The Curatorial Internship has been incredibly valuable to my museum career. To take on the role as a recent graduate was a big learning curve and allowed me to gain a huge amount of experience and knowledge across all aspects of collections management and curatorial work. To gain that experience so early in my career gave me enormous confidence when pursuing future roles, and I have used the skills and knowledge gained at the South Georgia Museum in every role that I have taken on since.”

In such an extraordinary and remote location, the challenges and learning opportunities encountered by the interns do not stop with their work. Several have developed an enduring passion for the southern region and their career development reflects that.

Intern 2022-23

Aoife McKenna: Aoife is the Curator at the Highlanders Museum in Inverness.

Intern 2021-22

Madison Kuras: Maddi recently completed an MPhil in Polar Studies at the University of Cambridge.

Intern 2018-19

Finlay Raffle is the Learning & Development Officer at The Unicorn Preservation Society.

Intern 2017-18

Charlotte Yeung is a Programme Assistant at a contemporary art gallery, The Turnpike, in Greater Manchester.

Intern 2016-17

Lorna Weir is a Assistant Collections Registrar at the National Trust for Scotland.

Intern 2014-15

Deirdre Mitchell has returned to work at the South Georgia Museum as the South Georgia Heritage Trust Director for South Georgia. She has also worked for the RNLI Museum in Poole and the National Trust, UK, in the polar cruise industry, and for the British Antarctic Survey at Rothera and in South Georgia.

Intern 2013-14

Suzanne Patterson-Black is the Senior Development Officer at the University of Dundee. She has also workied at the Dundee Heritage trust and the Scottish Fisheries Museum.

Intern 2012-13

Thomas Kennedy is the Assistant Curator of Modern British Art at Tate Britain. He has also worked as Assistant Curator at the Barbican Centre, London.

Intern 2011-12

Dr Katie Murray completed a PhD whilst working in the polar cruise industry as a history lecturer. She is the Project Officer at University of the Highlands and Islands and has worked for the The Centre for Recreation and Tourism Research there before that.

Intern 2010-11

Lynsey Easton became a primary school teacher. She ahs also worked as the Education and Outreach Officer at The Highlanders Museum, Scotland.

Intern 2022-23

Intern 2022-23