Monument Lab: High School Research Fellows 

Monument Lab, coming to Philadelphia in fall 2017, is a public art and history project produced by Mural Arts Philadelphia. The project, taking place over nine weeks between September 16 and November 19, challenges people to join a citywide conversation about history, memory, and our collective future.

A guiding, central question—What is an appropriate monument for the current city of Philadelphia?—will be posed to 21 of the most dynamic contemporary artists working in Philadelphia and around the world today, selected by curators Paul Farber and Ken Lum. Temporary monuments conceived by the artists will appear in public spaces across the city, accompanied by interactive pop-up “laboratories” for creative conversations and research collected by youth art guides. During open hours, staff will be present at all labs to distribute information, answer questions, prompt participation, and collect submissions from members of the public. We are looking to build dynamic, motivated, passionate, and locally-focused lab teams who are devoted to the sites and neighborhoods in which Monument Lab is based.

Monument Lab High School Research Fellows join a collaborative team working at one of the labs to foster conversations with public participants about art, history, civic engagement, and monuments. The fellows will be based at one of the 10 research labs, two afternoons a week. Fellows will assist in collecting ideas and proposals from members of the community, and help make sure those ideas are documented as part of a larger report to the city. The fellows should be high school students from the Philadelphia community, and should be excited about talking with other Philadelphians about art, history, and the city.

Research Fellow Duties

  • Works with lab manager, college students, and one other high school fellow to create understanding around Monument Lab’s temporary public art exhibition and public history themes.

  • Elicits public participation by collecting monument ideas from the general public.

  • Serves as an ambassador of the temporary exhibitions by being present, informed, and helpful within the lab and public spaces.  

  • Helps keep the lab organized, clean, and fully-stocked.

  • Adheres to correct procedures, policies, and health/safety guidelines.

  • Participates at community events for the lab and the exhibition

  • Provides organizational assistance, and data entry support as needed.

  • Fellows must be able to participate in a training period in Late August/Early September.

Research Fellow Skills and Qualifications

  • Possesses a strong familiarity with the city of Philadelphia and its history, to help facilitate conversations about the city.

  • Demonstrates ties to their communities through activism, volunteerism, and other interests.

  • Shows a strong track record of leadership experience and is motivated to be a member of a team.

  • Experience with critical writing, public speaking, poetry, blogging, and/or social media communication platforms.


City Hall, Franklin Square, Logan Square, Rittenhouse Square, Washington Square, Malcolm X Park, Marconi Plaza, Norris Square, Penn Treaty Park, and Vernon Park.


This position requires one weekday (Wednesday or Thursday) from 4 to 7 pm, and one weekend day from 12 to 5 pm for the duration of the project in addition to participation in orientations and training.

From September–November 2017 (9 weeks). $800 stipend to be paid in eight $100 payments.

How to Apply

Deadline to apply is August 25th.   

Must be available for interview the week of July 30th-August 4th, 2017

If interested in this position, please send a resume and cover letter to with “High School Research Fellow” in the subject line.