Arts Management/Special Events Internship

Arts Management/Special Events Internship

Position Summary

The Arts Management/Special Events Intern is an important member of the development team who provides administrative support while learning about the preparation and management of Penland’s Benefit Auction, which is a weekend fundraiser that grosses over $600,000 for the school and is the 3rd largest craft school auction in the U.S. This position allows the intern a high level of responsibility through which he or she will gain valuable knowledge and experience in auction fundraising, planning and executing a multi-day event, event registration, data management, and follow-up procedures. The internship is a 40-hour per week position from mid-to-late May through August 31, 2020. (Start and end dates are negotiable.) The intern reports to the Development Associate for Special Events throughout the internship and assists the Development Operations Manager with registration and check-out closer to and during the event.

A Penland internship offers a unique opportunity to live and work in a dynamic, creative educational community and work with accomplished professionals in a mutual learning and knowledge sharing environment. A $500 stipend for work is included. All housing and meals will be provided at no charge to the intern for the duration of the internship period with a $75 stipend for each week of the internship when the Pines dining hall is closed. Class and studio access is not provided.

Penland will work with applicants seeking educational credit for the internship. Details can be discussed in the interview process.


  • Assist with event preparation including inventories, permits, supply orders, updating documents, and other organizational tasks leading up to the Benefit Auction.
  • Oversee ticket reservations including receiving and tracking data, making follow-up phone calls with patrons, reporting ticket sales to staff, maintaining confidentiality, etc.
  • Research and solicit in-kind gifts using phone and email. This may include cold-calling potential donors.
  • Oversee catalog mailing including organizing volunteer assistance. Preparing letters, ticket receipts, inserts, labels and postage.
  • Assist the Development Operations Manager and IT Manager with the set-up and breakdown of the registration and check-out systems.
  • Assist the Development Operations Manager with running the auction registration and check-out areas.
  • Assist the Development Operations Manager with auction check-out.
  • Assist with event follow-up including generating and mailing follow-up letters, inventory of supplies, etc.
  • Attend relevant departmental meetings as well as auction planning and training meetings.


  • Possess a high level of familiarity and comfort working with Microsoft Outlook, Word, and Excel (essential). Strong command of mail merging is a plus.
  • Past experience with development office work is preferred but not required. Please indicate if you have experience with Blackbaud Raiser’s Edge fundraising software or Greater Giving auction software.
  • Must be highly organized and possess excellent time management and problem-solving skills. Ability to manage large amounts of information is essential. Attention to detail and accuracy is critical.
  • Must be highly self-motivated, task oriented and goal oriented.
  • A high level of emotional maturity, self-confidence and a sense of humor are required.
  • Must be able to work within deadlines, under pressure, and with a positive attitude at all times.
  • The ability to accommodate a flexible work schedule is required; must work the week of Aug. 3rd, including the two-day benefit auction weekend event on August 7-8, 2020.
  • Must possess excellent verbal and written communication skills and a positive professional manner.
  • Excellent customer service skills are essential; be comfortable making phone calls and in person communications with patrons, supporters, instructors and students.
  • Must have a proven ability to work collaboratively with diverse groups of individuals.
  • A demonstrated interest in the arts/arts management is important.

Physical Demands

This position requires the applicant to walk unaided up and down hills and over uneven terrain, bend, stoop, reach above their head, have use of fine and gross motor skills, and work in close quarters. The applicant must have normal visual acuity at near and far distance with correction and hear the spoken word with correction. The applicant must be fluent in English. The position demands frequent exposure to inclement weather. While performing the duties of this job, the applicant is regularly required to sit and to work at a computer. The applicant is frequently required to use hands to finger, handle, or touch objects, tools, or controls and to talk fluently. The applicant must occasionally lift and/or move heavy objects weighing up to 75 pounds.

To Apply

Penland School of Crafts believes that diversity and inclusion are essential to fulfilling its mission. We want to inspire and nurture the human spirit, and we value the perspectives and contributions of all people. We want the Penland experience to include varied ideas, world views, and personal characteristics. Penland is committed to being a community that welcomes and respects everyone regardless of age, ability, ethnicity, race, religion, philosophical or political beliefs, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, nationality, geographic origin, and socioeconomic status. We are committed to providing an environment free of discrimination.

The internship will remain open until filled, however the initial review of applications will consist of applications received by February 1, 2020. Send resume and cover letter addressing relevant experience and interest in the internship, personal contact information and email contact information for at least 3 professional references (a minimum of 1 of the 3 shall be from an employer) to the Development Associate for Special Events: Marianna Popp, Penland School of Crafts, PO Box 37 Penland, NC 28765 or


Penland School of Craft is an international center for craft education offering residential workshops, residencies, community education programs, and exhibitions. Located on 420 acres in the NC Mountains, Penland has 16 teaching studios and a total of 57 historic and contemporary buildings. Penland School of Crafts is an equal opportunity employer with a staff of 68. Penland operates with a $44 million endowment and an annual operating budget of $6 million. We offer several internships throughout the year. Penland is located about an hour northeast of Asheville, NC.