The New Jersey Folk Festival
The New Jersey Folk Festival is a large-scale, multi-faceted educational event that attracts approximately 12,000 people annually and is free and open to the public. For more that 45 years, the American Studies Department has partnered with community groups to feature the vibrant cultures of New Jersey. For more than 10 years, the festival has been a part of Rutgers Day, occurring on the last Saturday in April.
The internship is a for-credit class in the Department of American Studies. It is a full year commitment. Classes meet on Mondays from 5-8pm in the fall and spring semesters. The fall semester of the festival course engages students in ethnographic projects to research potential festival artists and plan festival events. During the spring semester, students will turn their recorded interviews into episodes for the New Jersey Folk Festival Podcast and will assist in producing a series of public programs leading up to our annual Rutgers Day event.
NJFF 2021-2022 Theme
On the Move: Transportation and Migration
Students will develop podcast projects and public events around these possible topics which include (but are not limited to):
- Cycling (especially in Black and Brown communities), walking, skateboarding
- Diners of New Jersey (inspired by our NJ Folk Fest board member Michael Gabriele, author of The History of Diners in New Jersey)
- Repair, Restoration, or Creation of cars, boats, shoes, bicycles, and other transportation material culture
- Occupations like bus drivers, car salesmen, and transit operators
- Immigrant Experiences of Migration, Homelands, and Borders; Stories of transition
- Music Diasporas and musical evolution across borders; Road music and Labor songs
- Histories of transportation networks in NJ; Model Railroading
- Car / Highway lore; Rest stop and transit hub cultures (Inspired by Looking For America on the New Jersey Turnpike by Angus Gillespie and Michael Rockland)
NJFF Internship Positions
Volunteers and Alumni: Coordinates volunteers and interfaces with alumi. Communication and
event planning experience desired.
Finance: Manages day-to-day bookkeeping. Accounting experience or coursework preferred. Manages student solicitation of small business sponsorship. Communication or business experience desired.
Craft Vendor Coordination: Manages solicitation and selection of commercial juried craft vendors.
Business or Arts experience desired.
Food Vendor Coordination: Manages solicitation and selection of commercial food vendors
and food service for staff and artists. Business, Food Science, or Hospitality experience preferred.
Logistics and Stage Team
Tech / Logistics: Coordinates technical infrastructure, including sustainability, health and safety,
accessibility issues. Engineering, Medical, or Logistics experience desired.
Stage Management: Coordinates performer relations, stage management, and sponsorships.
Stage Tech or Performance experience desired.
Editorial: Coordinates content and messaging for PR team. Journalism, Communication or Writing
PR and Social Media: Implements content and messaging on PR and Social Media platforms.
Journalism, Communication, or Writing experience preferred
Graphic Design: Implements design protocols in all festival publications and PR. Graphic Design
experience in Adobe programs required.
Web Design: Updates and maintains festival website and creates new web-based content. Web design
experience required, WordPress experience preferred.
Audio /Visual: Manages photo and video archives and is responsible for coordinating photography
and video on festival day. Photography/Videography experience preferred.
Podcasting: Assists with sound editing and story development for the entire team.
Curatorial and Community Team
Curatorial: Coordinates cultural interpretation and creates interpretive festival signage.
Writing/Culture/Arts experience preferred.
Heritage / Seminar: Coordinates contracts and artist relations for Heritage and Seminar areas.
Writing/Culture/Arts experience preferred.
Interactive Experiences: Coordinates interactive educational experiences for children and adults
related to festival theme. Education experience preferred.
Community Outreach: Coordinates communication and collaboration with community groups,
especially those related to the festival’s theme. For 2020: Oaxaca Festival, Spanish language
proficiency is REQUIRED, and interest in Latinx community issues preferred.