Associate Archivist

at Whitman College - Penrose LIbrary (view profile)
Published April 27, 2022
Location 345 Boyer Ave., Walla Walla, Washington
Category Academic  
Job Type Full-time  
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Education Requirements Master’s degree from an ALA accredited program with an emphasis or coursework in archival management; one year professional or pre-professional experience in archival processing; ability to provide reference, outreach, and instructional services.
Minimum Compensation in Local Currency $56,000
Hourly or Salary? Salary



The Whitman College and Northwest Archives curates materials that document the history of Whitman College and the Walla Walla region as well as rare books and other special collections housed in Penrose Library. The archives collects, preserves, provides access to, and promotes the use of these materials for teaching, learning, and research.


The Associate Archivist assists with the management of all functional areas of the Whitman College and Northwest Archives, including collection management, digital preservation, reference and instruction. The primary area of responsibility will be to develop and maintain workflows for the accessioning, arrangement and description of new and backlogged manuscript and archival materials in all formats, using applicable professional standards and best practices. The position will also oversee born-digital processing workflows and audiovisual format migrations. This work will include surveying collections; developing and prioritizing processing work plans; completing necessary rehousing and arrangement work; identifying priorities for digitization; and managing digital collections in ARMINDA, Whitman’s Islandora-based digital repository platform.



  1. Develop and implement policy for accessioning, arrangement and description of regional manuscripts and institutional records, including analog, hybrid and born-digital materials in accordance with professional standards.
  2. Manage the Orbis Cascade Alliance-mandated ArchivesSpace software, with a focus on core functions including accessioning; description and arrangement of processed and unprocessed materials; management of authorities and rights; and reference service. Create collection management records, track events, containers and locations, and develop models for assessing collections.
  3. Supervise and maintain AV reformatting equipment and digital processing station.
  4. Oversee reference operations and implement policies for access to collections in the reading room, and serve as primary backup to the Archives Assistant for reference and public service.
  5. Conduct reference interviews in person, by phone, by post, and by email, and refer archives patrons to relevant manuscript, archival, print, and electronic resources.
  6. Through processing, identify relevant under-utilized collections relevant to the Whitman curriculum, and to local and institutional history.
  7. Collaborate with faculty to provide curriculum integration support for students and courses utilizing archival and special collections. In collaboration with the Archivist, teach classes using archival and special collections, including credit-bearing library courses. Serve as a member of the Instructional and Research Services Team, and develop the ability over time to participate in library-wide instructional initiatives
  8. Work with institutional offices, student groups and community partners to acquire and promote the use of institutional and local history records.
  9. In collaboration with the Archivist and Scholarly Communications Librarian (or ARMINDA administrator), participate in digitization projects and manage metadata and policies related to archival collections in ARMINDA.
  10. Supervise student archives assistants working on processing and digitization projects.
  11. Serve on library-wide teams, including the ARMINDA and Digital Services Team and the Instruction and Research Services team; and participate in planning and policy making in a shared decision-making environment.
  12. Actively participate in regional consortia; pursue continuing educational, professional or scholarly activity.
  13. Other duties as may be assigned by the Archivist or Director of Penrose Library.



Individuals must be able to explain and/or demonstrate that they possess the knowledge, skills, and abilities to safely perform the essential functions of the job, with or without reasonable accommodation.


Archival theory, methodology and practices, including:

  1. Experience with ArchivesSpace or other archival management systems; or the ability to develop and maintain expertise in the collections management systems.
  2. Appraisal of College records and regional manuscript collections.
  3. Professional best practices for decision making, prioritization and effective processing of all formats, including familiarity with multiple levels of archival processing, from detailed item-level to More Product Less Process (MPLP) practices.
  4. Descriptive systems and principles including DACS, EAD, XML, MARC21 and Library of Congress Names Authority Files and Subject Headings.
  5. Experience or coursework in born-digital processing or digital preservation.
  6. Archival ethics and laws relating to the management of archives and special collections, including United States Copyright Law.
  7. Demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, and experience applying this commitment to work in libraries, archives or special collections.
  8. Issues relating to risk, restrictions, and managing access to archival and manuscript collections.
  9. Experience or coursework in designing and delivering instruction using primary source materials in archival, manuscript and digital collections.
  10. Ability to work positively and creatively in a liberal arts college environment, and be flexible in a changing work environment.


Required: Master’s degree from an ALA accredited program with an emphasis or coursework in archival management; one year professional or pre-professional experience in archival processing; ability to provide reference, outreach, and instructional services.

Preferred: Knowledge of or interest in the history and culture of the inland Pacific Northwest; Master’s degree in History or a related field; experience supervising student workers; experience with audio-visual digitization and reformatting; fluency in Spanish desirable.