Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages [Guelph]

Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages


Guelph Museums  

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Guelph, Ontario

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$18.60 per hour

Job Description

Guelph Museums /

Start: December 1, 2020
End: March 31, 2021
Salary: $18.60 per hour

Guelph Museums consists of three heritage sites - Guelph Civic Museum, McCrae House, and Locomotive 6167 - through which we explore our local histories in the form of exhibitions, online access, educational programming and community events.

Guelph is situated on the ancestral homelands of the Anishinaabek Peoples, specifically the traditional territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation. Through the Between the Lakes Purchase No. 3 Treaty (1792), the Mississaugas of the Credit ceded to the British Crown over 3,000,000 acres of land between Lakes Huron, Ontario and Erie. Today, Guelph is home to many First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples. 

Today and forward, Guelph Museums is centering the voices of peoples historically silenced in colonial spaces. We are committed to projects that strengthen and build relationships and are embedded in rigorous research, consultation and collaboration. We aim to create safer and braver spaces for truth telling, attract and satisfy diverse audiences, deepen visitor engagement, and embrace innovative, leading-edge museum practices and technologies. These guiding principles inform all that we do at Guelph Museums and, as such, extend to the incumbent in the Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages position described below.

Job Description:

The Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages will contribute significantly toward the assessment of BIPOC narratives within the Museums' 40,000+ piece permanent collection. They will also participate in the distillation of BIPOC narratives in the Museums' exhibitions, which explore Guelph’s history and its place in the world. 

Working with the education team, the Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages will contribute to the development of inquiry-based learning programs, focused on BIPOC heritages from historical and contemporary perspectives. The incumbent will also examine the BIPOC narratives within our existing education programs.

Through this work, the Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages will contribute meaningfully toward the development of historical and contemporary BIPOC knowledges within Guelph Museums and counter the colonial positionality embedded in our three heritage sites. They will actively take part in the complex process of institutional decolonization and gain valuable work experience in a specific museum environment.

Organization Description:

Guelph Museums includes: (1) Guelph Civic Museum, with a collection of 40,000+ artifacts that bring our regional narratives, past and present, to life. (2) McCrae House, a National Historic Site and the birthplace of Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae (1872-1918), the First World War doctor, soldier and poet who penned “In Flanders Fields." Locomotive 6167, one of 203 “Northern” locomotives used by Canadian National Railways during the Second World War and for special excursion trips throughout Ontario. 

The Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages will work both onsite and remotely; however, they will receive orientation, training and experience at all of our heritage sites.


The ideal candidate for this position will have completed at least one of the following post-secondary programs of study: Indigenous Studies, Canadian History, Art History/Studio Art, or Other Humanities/Social Sciences or combination thereof (undergraduate-level) / Applied Museum Studies (college-level).

The incumbent will have strong organizational skills, computer skills, and research and writing experience. Data management skills, experience with PastPerfect (or similar collections database), and digital imaging software skills are considered assets. The incumbent will have excellent verbal and written communication skills. 

Priority will be given to qualified applicants of BIPOC heritage, recognizing that both lived and learned experiences will inform the success of this opportunity.

Please submit a Cover Letter and Resume by Nov 30, 2020 to: (subject line: Curatorial Assistant - BIPOC Heritages)

Interested candidates must also be registered with the Young Canada Works candidate inventory. (Please see for eligibility criteria.)

Please direct any questions to: Dawn Owen, Curator / 519-836-1221 ext. 2774

Guelph Museums is an equal opportunity employer that values diversity in the workplace. We welcome applications from women, people with disabilities, and Black, Indigenous and People of Colour. We are also therefore happy to accommodate any individual needs in keeping with the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. If you require an accommodation in order to participate in the hiring process, please contact us to make your needs known in advance. Personal information collected through the recruitment process will be used solely to determine eligibility for employment. We thank all candidates in advance; however, only those being considered for an interview will be contacted.