Job Opportunities

There is currently 1 position available at the San Mateo County Historical Association.


On-Call Preparator

The San Mateo County Historical Association (SMCHA) seeks a qualified on-call Preparator to assist in the preparation and installation of exhibitions and assist with collections projects as directed.


  • Under the direction of the Curator, assist in the execution of SMCHA’s exhibitions and collection rotations.
  • Ensure the safe handling and installation of artifacts for exhibition in a timely fashion.
  • Assist in the preparation of galleries for installation including wall painting, wall preparation, construction, framing, drywall installation and general light carpentry.
  • Assist in the construction of crating, pedestals, cases, and other exhibition furniture.
  • Under the direction of the Curator provide timely and accurate installation, and deploy a variety of techniques to execute exhibition design.


  • Bachelor’s degree in Visual Arts, Studio Arts, Design or similar field of study or commensurate work experience.
  • At least 3-5 years’ experience as preparator or in a similar position in a museum, gallery or arts organization.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of museum installation techniques.
  • Experience with art handling, storage, packing, crating and installation.
  • Thorough knowledge of construction techniques, materials and tools.
  • Ability to climb ladders and scaffolding, to lift up to 40 lbs and stand for long periods of time.
  • Ability to perform a variety of building trades-skilled tasks.
  • Skill in the use and care of hand and power tools.
  • Excellent communication skills with ability to identify problems and resolve them quickly so that installations can function smoothly.
  • Ability to work effectively in partnership with people of diverse cultural backgrounds.

Working Conditions:

  • Applicants should be willing to work occasional nights and weekends.

General Time Commitment:

  • This position is on-call, as needed.

Physical Demands:

  • This position requires an ability to stand, walk, move and remain active consistently and for lengthy periods. Ability to lift 40 pounds.
  • Ability to perform routine bending, stooping, twisting, and reaching. The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.


  • $25-$30 per hour depending on experience.

How to Apply

To apply, please provide the following:

  • Resume with education, employment history
  • Contact information for 3 references
  • Brief cover letter addressing your interest in the position

Application materials should be emailed in PDF format with “On-call Preparator” in subject line to:

No phone calls please.