Curtis Institute of Music

by justineh

PICS Organization Name
Curtis Institute of Music


Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 

Weekly Stipend

Public Transportation

Housing Provided

Former Interns
Rachel Inman '20, Savannah Du '18

Organization Description
The Curtis Institute of Music (Philadelphia) educates and trains exceptionally gifted young musicians for careers as classical performing artists on the highest professional level. During the summer, Curtis opens its doors to provide musicians and music lovers of all ages the opportunity to explore classical music and experience Curtis Institute of Music’s “learn by doing” philosophy. Curtis Summerfest offers programs ranging from intensive instrumental and vocal workshops to orchestral festivals.

Internship Description
In the summer months, Curtis opens its doors to musician participants of many skill levels, musical backgrounds and varying ages. Summerfest offerings include the Chamber Music and Orchestra for Adults, Jeffrey Khaner Flute Festival, Elizabeth Hainen Harp Colony, the Young Artist Voice Program and the Young Artist Summer Program with specific focuses for orchestral instrumentalists, conductors, composers and pianists. Through each of these programs, musicians learn from some of Curtis’ most celebrated faculty, in a welcoming and nurturing environment. 

The PICS Intern is an essential member of the residential and administrative teams. The Intern assists the Summerfest staff in all aspects of building community with participants. They play a key role in residential life through the check‐in and orientation process, daily meal times in the Dining Hall, evening recreational activities, and living in a suite with program participants of various ages. 

A variety of projects for the administration will be designed for the Intern’s specific interests and skills. Past projects have included designing data-visualizations for our marketing, coordinating with potential scholarship resources for our participants, and creating audience and participant surveys. All of these projects serve critical functions to Curtis as it continues to develop all Summerfest offerings. 

Working in a close-knit and open team, the Intern will: 

  • Share in the responsibility of making each student, faculty, and program participant feel welcome on Curtis’ campus.
  • Play a vital role in presenting Curtis as a hospitable, service‐oriented institution. 
  • Work closely with Summerfest team to implement seamless and customer‐focused operations. 
  • Work with musicians ranging in age from teen through adult. 
  • Communicate concerns and/or observations directly to the Summerfest staff in an effort to improve the summer‐program experience at Curtis.
  • Respond to correspondence to the Summerfest office. 
  • Assist with blog and social media initiatives as needed. 
  • Office responsibilities may include but are not limited to: sorting music; keeping posted information accurate, timely, and readily available.
  • Assist the Summerfest staff as needed.

In order to understand the social and living environment of Curtis summer programs, the summer intern will serve as a resident assistant: 

  • Work with Summerfest staff to promote a positive community environment in the Lenfest Hall residence. 
  • Take an active role in creating and promoting a sense of community under the supervision of the Summerfest staff, interacting with and being aware of the needs of the students. 
  • Be available to listen to resident concerns, help resolve personal issues and roommate conflicts, and refer students to appropriate staff members. 
  • Monitor and communicate any maintenance problems, enforce curfew policies, report the consumption of illegal substances and issues of student behavior, and maintain accurate records of special circumstances in the residence halls (e.g. medical emergencies, special student issues, policy enforcement concerns, etc.) and report to the appropriate staff. 
  • Assist with check‐in and check‐out procedures 
  • Attend meetings called by the Summerfest staff.

Internship Qualifications

  • Strong attention to detail and willingness to work independently. 
  • Ability to multi‐task and prioritize management of projects. 
  • The ability to work as part of a team. 
  • Ability to interact effectively and professionally with faculty, staff, parents, potential participants, and students from diverse ethnicities and language skills. 
  • Understanding of summer program atmosphere. 
  • Patience, friendliness, and flexibility. 
  • Excellent customer‐service skills. 
  • Responsibility, mature candidates with successful past residence life or other leadership experience, a desire to nurture students within a residence hall environment. 
  • Willingness to learn and adapt, and the ability to work well with people. 
  • Creative thinker and problem‐solver 
  • Excellent written and communication skills.
  • Some familiarity with classical music.
  • Experience on recital crews, page turning for recitals, or ability to read music. 
  • Proficiency with website design and social media posting experience.

Expected Start Time
Varies week-to-week, generally 9:00 am

Expected End Time
Varies week-to-week, generally 5:00 pm, plus some evening and weekend activities 

Required Dates
6/1/18 - 8/8/18

Internship Length
10 Weeks

Meets Certificate Requirement

Additional Info
Housing will be provided for the internship and preferred given the activities of the programs. Meals are available but at the expense of the intern. The Curtis Institute of Music occupies a vibrant urban campus in downtown Philadelphia along Locust Street, stretching from its main building on Rittenhouse Square to the new Lenfest Hall, located two blocks east. Housing will be provided in Lenfest Hall located at 1616 Locust Street Philadelphia, PA, 19103. 

Three weeks during the summer are expected to be roughly 9 - 5, Monday through Friday. Other weeks during the summer, when programs are in session, schedule will also include some evening and weekend activities, especially from mid-July to early-August period. Intern must be willing to remain flexible about work schedules.

Pennsylvania School Law requires that all employees undergo background checks if they will have direct contact with students. The following three background checks are required:

  1. Department of Human Services Child Abuse History Clearance
  2. Pennsylvania State Police Request for Criminal Records Check
  3. Federal Criminal History Record Information (CHRI)

Curtis will provide detailed directions and reimburse any expenses for these background checks. Part of the process includes getting fingerprints.

Evaluation Excerpt

Throughout this program, I witnessed people of disparate nationalities, ethnicities, ages, genders, and experiences meet and work together in close and friendly collaboration in a mere few days’ time. Some could not even speak the same languages fluently, but they were all able to appreciate music together. By working with these participants closely as an intern and ensuring the smooth running of the program as an administrative intern, I believe that I contributed to this intimate and friendly culture of music.
—Rachel Inman '20

To see whether this internship is still accepting applications for 2018, please check the Second Round page.


To read evaluations written by former interns, please contact the
Student Program