Job Details

Northeastern University
  • Position Number: 4582993
  • Location: Boston, MA
  • Position Type: Libraries

Civil Rights and Restorative Justice Project Archivist

About the Opportunity

Northeastern University School of Law seeks a skilled, innovative, and collaborative professional for a two-year full-time grant-funded as Project Archivist (Grade 107, $50,520-65,000) for the Burnham-Nobles Digital Archive (BNDA, This position reports to the African American History Archivist in the University Library and a School of Law faculty member and supports the work of the Civil Rights & Restorative Justice project (CRRJ), an affiliated program of Northeastern University School of Law's Center for Law, Equity and Race (CLEAR).

CRRJ collects and compiles data on racially-motivated violence in the mid-twentieth century. To date, CRRJ's preliminary academic and journalistic investigations into about 1,000 cases of racial homicides has generated over 20,000 items-- records captured from the pages of legal documents, political pamphlets, personal letters, photographs, scrapbooks, audio/video interviews, genealogical information, census records, maps, newspapers, vital statistics, and records from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Justice, and state and local governmental agencies. The Project holds the country's most extensive collection of written and visual materials on this historical period.

The Project Archivist provides leadership and guidance to both the law school team and library staff, collaborating with colleagues in both groups, including serving on relevant committees and/or part-time staff in both units as needed. The position will manage the continued organization, description and outreach related to the BNDA's extensive digital and physical collection, documenting the process for future use.

The Project Archivist role is right for someone who will work well in a fast-paced academic setting and be comfortable as a project lead and in a team environment that includes students, academic faculty, and library professionals. Attention to detail, curiosity, and a commitment to creating archival projects which recognize the humanity of the people represented will also serve them well.

Specific Responsibilities

The Project Archivist will lead in completing the building of the BDNA. As this is an ongoing project, they will leverage the project's previously generated database, data dictionary and descriptive workflows in order to complete the digital archive, offering advice on improvements which will bring the project to a timely, satisfactory conclusion. The position will use existing policies and procedures governing use of holdings; ensure intellectual property/copyright concerns are addressed within proper legal and policy frameworks; facilitate researcher access to the holdings; and work with professional staff on outreach, publications, and products promoting the holdings, developing further enhancements as needed. Serving on both Law School team and Library Staff, they will also serve on relevant committees and/or working groups, undertaking special projects as assigned, training and supervising students and part-time staff in both units as needed.

The Project Archivist will manage the collection. Arrange and describe formats of material, determine preservation and conservation best practices; analyze copyright and privacy policies and issues for materials not in the public domain; recommend delivery specifications for digitization; ensure long term access through identification and resolution of problems in preservation of materials; manage and ensure completion of grant commitments; hire, train and supervise student employees; manage reference and research services, including use of material for classroom instruction and reproduction.

Process the analog collection and cross-reference the contents of the analog and digital collections. Create a robust case inventory. Create and implement processing plans and metrics, re-format audio and video materials; update finding aids.

Implements item-level description based on project-specific metadata schema for digital collection. Manage imaging standards for digital objects, re-imaging if necessary; follow or develop workflows for new items to be entered into Northeastern's Digital Repository; create easy-to-follow standards for future growth.

Promote the discovery, use and growth of the collection. Assist in disseminating information about collection; write articles and blogs; assist with writing grants for external support; and participate in events to promote the collection.


  • Master's degree from ALA accredited library school or equivalent accredited advanced degree in related field with archival concentration.

  • Broad understanding of trends in archives and special collections as well as technical ability.

  • Strong project management, planning, organizational, and supervisory skills.

  • Excellent oral and written communications skills and the ability to communicate effectively and empathetically with faculty, staff, and community partners.

  • Must be able to lift 40 pounds and work in an environment in which exposure to materials containing dust and mold is possible.

  • Experience with processing archival collections as well as creating metadata for finding aids and digital objects.

  • Solid understanding of laws governing copyright and fair use.

  • Attention to detail; ability to manage time and complete projects in a timely manner.

  • Ability to work independently and as a member of multiple teams with a broad range of colleagues.

    About the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections and the Library

    The Northeastern University Library supports the mission of the University by working in partnership with the University community to develop and disseminate new scholarship. The Library fosters intellectual and professional growth, enriches the research, teaching, and learning environment, and promotes the effective use of knowledge by managing and delivering information resources and services to library users.

    In addition to University History, the University Archives and Special Collections (UASC) at the Northeastern University Libraries houses and carefully curates a diverse and growing collection of historical records about Boston. One major focus is to preserve and provide equitable access to the history of Boston's social movements, including civil and political rights, immigrant rights, homelessness, and urban and environmental justice. To that end, our work is community-focused, rooted in critical theory, and extremely collaborative-including city-wide civic participation, inter-archival digital collection building, partnering with grassroots organizations and activists, and liaising with our user communities-on campus and off. Our reference services' mission is to provide access to all that is equitable, empathetic, and full of ease regardless of location or affiliation.

    The University Archives and Special Collections is excited to be growing their team to continue to support their central mission of equitable access both through archival description and processing as well as reference, outreach, and instruction services.

    Position Type


    Additional Information

    Northeastern University considers factors such as candidate work experience, education and skills when extending an offer.

    Northeastern has a comprehensive benefits package for benefit eligible employees. This includes medical, vision, dental, paid time off, tuition assistance, wellness & life, retirement- as well as commuting & transportation. Visit for more information.

    Northeastern University is an equal opportunity employer, seeking to recruit and support a broadly diverse community of faculty and staff. Northeastern values and celebrates diversity in all its forms and strives to foster an inclusive culture built on respect that affirms inter-group relations and builds cohesion.

    All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, disability status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.

    To learn more about Northeastern University's commitment and support of diversity and inclusion, please see

    To apply, visit

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