The Ph.D. Program in History

at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York

Job Opportunities

Swarthmore College seeks a Digital Archivist

Position Summary

The Digital Archivist is responsible for preserving, processing, and providing access to digital resources in the Swarthmore College Peace Collection and Friends Historical Library, and providing leadership on digital collections standards and policies. This is approved as a three year appointment but is expected to be made permanent at the end of the term, contingent on funding and on satisfactory job performance.

Job no: 493835
Work type: Limited Term Full Time
Location: Swarthmore
Categories: Staff

Click here to apply

Primary Responsibilities

  • Acquisition of born-digital materials. Acquires born-digital content as identified by the Curators of FHL and SCPC as within collecting scope. Advises the Curators on appraisal strategy, privacy concerns, and security, as they apply to the context of born-digital records. Administers file transfer following best practices and utilizing appropriate tools (such as Bagger for files or Archive-It for websites).
  • Ingest and processing of born-digital materials. Follows best practices and utilizes appropriate tools, such as BitCurator, to process born-digital archival materials.
  • Management and preservation of born-digital and digitized content. Migrates digital content from legacy platforms (such as CONTENTdm and DSpace), as well as digital content that is currently not managed (stored on servers), into Islandora, TriCo’s emergent digital asset management solution. Ensures that content is reliably preserved. Monitors file format obsolescence and other risks.
  • Access to born-digital and digitized content. Works to ensure that digital content in the collections is as accessible as possible to appropriate audiences, following the strictures of privacy concerns, copyright regulations, and donor restrictions. Works towards improving user experience. Bridges the multiple discovery systems and access tools used in TriCo (such as Alma, Islandora, Archive-It, and ArchivesSpace). Works toward including content in multi-institutional aggregators, including DPLA as well as project-based and/or subject-specific content portals.
  • Metadata management. Ensures accuracy of descriptive, structural, and administrative metadata. Follows professional metadata standards for cataloging born-digital archival materials (i.e. DACS, EAD) as well as digitized content in a digital library (e.g. DCMI, MODS). Audits and performs clean-ups of metadata as needed.
  • Digitization. Works closely with the FHL and SCPC Curators to determine priorities for digitization and to establish digitization projects. Supervises digitization efforts, performed by student workers, staff, or outside vendors. Ensures that digitization standards (i.e. FADGI) are met and metadata quality is maintained.
  • Professional development. Maintains currency in digital archives best practices and technologies. Attends professional development training and engages actively in professional activities. Participates in diversity and inclusion awareness activities.
  • Strategic directions. Creates operating policies, writes proposals, makes recommendations, and creates risk analysis reports. In consultation with the FHL and SCPC Curators, selects and implements software and systems as appropriate.
  • Collegiality. Trains and supervises staff members, student assistants, and temporary summer workers. Participates as a member of the Tri-College community of Haverford, Bryn Mawr, and Swarthmore. Serves on TriCo Library Committees including IMAGe and others as appropriate.

Secondary Responsibilities

  • Reference service. May be asked to provide some reference service to on-site patrons of SCPC.

Essential Functions

Must be able to communicate in English, including the ability to speak in public; must be able to write in English in an articulate and accurate manner.

  • Must be able to operate standard office equipment, including computer, printer, copier, scanner, and fax machine.
  • Must be able to speak on the telephone.

Required Credentials


Master’s degree in library/information science or a related field, preferably with archives concentration


  • Minimum two years’ experience working as an archivist or librarian, an archives technician or library technician working under the direction of a professional archivist or professional librarian
  • Experience using a digital asset management system
  • Facility with one or more descriptive metadata standards relevant to the work of a digital archivist
  • Knowledge of digital preservation theory and practice, including best practices, current technologies, administrative/technical metadata and file format standards, and the OAIS reference model
  • Experience with or demonstrated aptitude to learn disk imaging, digital forensics tools, and digital preservation management software


  • Strong organizational skills, including careful attention to detail
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to prioritize workload and handle multiple tasks
  • Ability to teach skills to student workers and other staff
  • Ability to work with a diverse population, including students and scholars from all over the world
  • Ability to work in a supportive and collaborative fashion, and as part of a team
  • Demonstrated eagerness to learn new procedures, equipment, standards, policies, skills as needed

Preferred qualifications

  • Experience using or managing one or more of the following software tools: Islandora, CONTENTdm, DSpace, ArchivesSpace, Archive-It, BitCurator
  • Knowledge of legacy digital formats and non-digital audio and audiovisual formats
  • Experience using command line interfaces and the ability to write and use simple scripts

Swarthmore College is a highly selective liberal arts college located in the suburbs of Philadelphia, whose mission combines academic rigor with social responsibility. Swarthmore has a strong institutional commitment to inclusive excellence and nondiscrimination in its educational program and employment practices and encourages candidates who will further advance the goal of fostering a diverse and inclusive community. As one of the nation’s finest institutions of higher learning, Swarthmore College is global in outlook and draws students from around the nation and world. The 425‐acre campus is a designated arboretum, complete with gardens, rolling lawns, a creek, wooded hills, and hiking trails in the Crum Woods.

Swarthmore College actively seeks and welcomes applications from candidates with exceptional qualifications, particularly those with demonstrable commitments to a more inclusive society and world. Swarthmore College is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

Advertised: Eastern Standard Time
Applications close: Open until filled