University Archivist, John Hopkins University

By IS Lab March 4, 2021

John Hopkins University

Reporting to the Assistant Director of Academic Liaison and Special Collections, the Hodson Curator of the University Archives leads the development and implementation of strategies to acquire, appraise, preserve, manage, and promote the history of Johns Hopkins University. The archivist manages accessioning, processing, preservation, and public services for university records and manuscript collections in analog, digitized, and born-digital forms as it affects the official records and faculty papers of the University’s Central Administration, Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, Whiting School of Engineering, The School of Advanced International Studies, the School of Education, and the Carey Business School.  As appropriate, the archivist works collaboratively with other curators on the acquisition of collections of personal papers that enhance our understanding of Hopkins history and the local community. The University Archivist works closely with the Conservation Department and the IT Infrastructure Directorate to ensure the preservation of analog and digital records.

Job Responsibilities


  • Develop and articulate strategic activities for the Archives, in alignment with the Sheridan Libraries and Museums strategic plan, that includes new collecting opportunities, particularly around the documentation of under-represented groups on campus, and  incorporates dynamic activities in the areas of discovery, teaching, preservation, digital presentation to online communities, outreach to new audiences, off-campus partnerships, and alliances with the teaching faculty, students, and library colleagues
  • Be an organizational innovator for the Archives Team by facilitating the ongoing development of a flexible work environment focused on strategic priorities, project orientation, a work culture that is both fluid and accountable, and supports staff excellence
  • Recruit, train, mentor, and coach the Archives Team, as well as students, and volunteers
  • Seek and build campus partnerships with entities such as University Administration, Development and Alumni Affairs, Office of Multi-Cultural Affairs, and others
  • Actively reach out to the local archival community and the greater Baltimore community to build partnerships
  • Convene the University Archives Council to facilitate collaboration across the other institutional archives
  • Work with the Office of External Relations to identify donors, grants, and other fund-raising opportunities to advance the mission of the archives, libraries, and University

Collection development and management:

  • Appraise and select university history-related materials (university records, faculty and staff papers, student life materials, and other historical records documenting Johns Hopkins University history) in print and digital form
  • Prepare collection development policies and strategies which embrace documentation of campus diversity and seek inclusion of under-represented populations
  • Assist in accessioning and processing of archival and manuscript collections as appropriate
  • Cultivate and maintain strong relationships with university staff, faculty, students and other records creators
  • Maintain accurate provenance records of gifts, and work closely with the Sheridan Libraries’ Office of External Relations to ensure appropriate acknowledgement of donors
  • Assess collection strengths and weaknesses, developing and carrying out action plans to address the latter
  • Serve as a key stakeholder in developing and executing procedures to acquire, accession and process university history-related materials

Policy oversight:

  • Establish, monitor, and assess policies to ensure the integrity, protection, and preservation of records essential to the documentation of the University’s development and function
  • Assess and monitor university procedures for appraisal and retention of records
  • Collaborate with the General Counsel’s office, the President’s Senior Advisor on Policy, and other stakeholders in the JHU community on legal and regulatory policies related to archives and records management
  • Advise senior leadership on archives and records management functions

Outreach and instruction:

  • Plan and implement programs using university history-related materials to support the teaching, research, and administrative objectives of the University
  • Direct the reference and marketing activities of the University Archives by monitoring ongoing outreach constituencies, assessing outreach efforts, and planning for regular and targeted marketing and communication efforts to engage stakeholders and grow services use
  • Represent the University Archives in meetings, at alumni events, and at public engagements
  • Participate in the conceptualization, design, and implementation of exhibitions and digital projects about university history
  • Support and participate in University Archives reference and research requests, fellowships, and special projects
  • Design, participate in, and assess instructional sessions about university history, with a special focus on teaching primary source literacy
  • Serve as stakeholder in digitization initiatives and other digital collections projects that focus on university history

Job Qualifications

  • MLS from an ALA-accredited institution or an advanced related degree
  • 5 years’ professional experience in archival administration, preferably in an academic setting with increasing responsibilities, including management experience with both full-time and student employees, and budgetary experience
  • Advanced cultural competency that demonstrates an interest in participating in and leading discussions, initiatives, and collection development activities that reflect diversity and inclusion issues relevant to students, faculty, staff, and the community.
  • Strong technology skills and experience with tools for acquiring, processing and providing access to both analog and electronic records
  • Knowledge of relevant standards for archival description and preservation including DACS, EAD, EAC-CPF, and PREMIS, and familiarity with other metadata standards
  • Demonstrated outward-facing, user-centered, and innovative service orientation
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively in a team environment by establishing and maintaining cooperative working relationships
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in a technologically sophisticated and rapidly changing environment
  • Second M.A. in History or SAA Academy of Certified Archivists certification preferred but not required