Museum Exhibits Preparator – The University Museum at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville


Job Description

The Museum Exhibit Preparator will be responsible for the professional care, safe movement, and installation of objects from the collections of The University Museum and objects on loan to the museum from other institutions or individuals. Included in this responsibility is the supervision and care of the museum collections environment and preservation of objects ranging from routine cleaning to minor repairs and photo documentation in accordance with internal protocols and national museum standards and practices. The Museum Exhibit Preparator is also responsible for the transport of any museum objects, either moving on or off campus, including careful, appropriate packing/shipping and attendant record keeping.

Additionally, the Museum Preparator is responsible for the installation of all museum objects on campus and at local locations. This responsibility requires the planning, design and construction of display systems consistent with the standards of the museum profession (walls, pedestals, shelves, cases, frames, mounts, stands), taking into consideration the integrity of the objects, their security and the goal of accessible display throughout the University. This position also maintains all tools, equipment and supplies for the Museum Operations fabrication shop and collections storage areas. Further duties and responsibilities may be assigned based on the needs and goals of the Museum and/or the University.

Candidates must have the ability to:

  • Construct exhibition furniture, mounts, crates and storage housings using rough and finish carpentry and other fabrication techniques utilizing various kinds of lumber, drywall, metal, and other materials.
  • Use, maintain, and repair stationary and portable hand and power tools in a large workshop.
  • Carefully move, handle, house and precisely mount very large, small and fragile museum objects.
  • Use, maintain and repair gallery and museum lighting systems.
  • Lift and carry up to 60 lbs.
    Perform tasks at varying heights, use ladders and elevated platforms.
  • Work while standing, walking, bending, stooping and reaching for extended periods of time.
  • Must have a valid driver’s license and be able to drive a large cargo van.
  • Must be able to move large materials with mechanical assistance such as fork lifts, pallet jacks, dollies, hand trucks.

Minimum Acceptable Qualifications:

  1. Any one or any combination of the following types of preparation:
    1. Credit for college training leading to a major or concentration in museum exhibits-technology.
    2. Credit for college training leading to a major or concentration in a field related to museum exhibits technology and/or design (such as industrial arts, graphic art, design, visual communications, or art).
    3. Credit for college training leading to a major or concentration in any field.
    4. Work experience that required the use of hand and power tools and a knowledge of construction techniques and planning.
    5. Intensive training in museum exhibits technology and/or design in a recognized museum training program

That totals -1.0 unit according to the following conversion rates:
60 semester hours (or Associate degree) in “a” = 1.0 unit
120 semester hours (or Bachelor’s Degree) in “b” = 1.0 unit
120 semester hours (or Bachelor’s degree) in “c” = 0. 5 unit maximum
3 years of “d” = 1.0 unit
1 year of “e” = 1. 0 unit

  1. Demonstrated experience working independently in the use, maintenance, and repair of workshop tools and materials, such as hand and power tools, table saws, miter saws, drill presses, routers and with materials including various kinds of lumber, drywall, metals, fabrics, plastics, mechanical fasteners, and adhesives.
  2. Valid driver’s license.

 Preferred Qualifications:

  • Two or more years working independently as a preparator or art handler in a museum or gallery or similar setting, with increasing levels of responsibility.
  • Extensive knowledge of design and construction of museum and gallery exhibition furnishings and mounts fabricated via rough and finish carpentry and other material fabrication techniques utilizing materials such as metal and plastic.
  • Experience matting and framing two-dimensional artworks.
  • Excellent fine and gross motor skills and demonstrable visual and physical attention to detail.
  • Training in fine art techniques and art history.
  • Ability to use work processing, database, and desktop publishing software and digital photographic cameras.
  • Ability to use museum collection management software such as PastPerfect or similar.
  • Ability to perform digital graphic arts editing, printing and mounting techniques.

 Posting Salary:

$2,735.25 Monthly, excellent benefits package.

Applying for this position

This position is a current civil service vacancy at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and will close to applicants at 11:59 p.m. CST, on January 31, 2020.  SIUE offers an exceptional array of benefits to all full-time and part-time (50% or more) employees including medical, dental and life insurance; tuition waivers; financial savings plans; vacation and sick leave; and pension plan as part of a total compensation package to eligible employees.

Applicants must submit a completed Civil Service Application, which must include complete employment history, through HireTouch.To apply for this vacancy, go to the following link:

For more information, please visit the Office of Human Resources website at or call Civil Service Testing at 618-650-2190.

About the SIUE University Museum

The University Museum of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, founded in 1979, is a repository and interpretive center whose interdisciplinary collections include more than 32,000 two- and three-dimensional objects of fine art, architecture, history, ethnology, archaeology and the natural sciences. The University Museum supports the instructional, research and public service functions of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

About Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

SIUE is a nationally recognized university that provides students with a high-quality, affordable education that prepares them for successful careers and lives of purpose to shape a changing world. Built on the foundation of a broad-based liberal education, and enhanced by hands-on research and real-world experiences, the academic preparation SIUE students receive equips them to thrive in the global marketplace and make our communities better places to live.

Situated on 2,660 acres of beautiful woodland atop the bluffs overlooking the natural beauty of the Mississippi River’s rich bottom land and only a short drive from downtown St. Louis, the SIUE campus is home to a diverse student body of more than 14,000.

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