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Processing Archivist

Located in culturally diverse, historic, and dynamic Richmond, Virginia, convenient to the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the recreation destinations of the Atlantic Ocean and the Chesapeake Bay, Virginia Commonwealth University is one of Virginia's largest universities and among the nation's leading research institutions. The VCU Libraries, one of Virginia’s outstanding research library systems, advances the University’s teaching, research, service, and patient care mission with 2.5 million volumes, 61,000 serials, 600,000 e-books, and nationally prominent collections in the health and biological sciences, social work, the arts, the history of medicine, and comic and book arts.

The Virginia Commonwealth University Libraries invites applications and nominations for a Processing Archivist with a one-year appointment, with the possibility of a one-year extension. The VCU Libraries seeks an energetic, knowledgeable, and technologically capable individual who will support the teaching, research, and user support missions of the VCU Libraries. The Processing Archivist will be responsible for enhancing the visibility of manuscript and archival collections. The successful candidate will join a culturally and academically diverse faculty of the highest caliber.


Reporting to the University Archivist and Head of Tompkins-McCaw Library Special Collections and Archives, and in collaboration with the Head of James Branch Cabell Library Special Collections and Archives, the Processing Archivist will be responsible for accessioning and processing university archives and manuscripts related to twentieth and twenty-first century American history held in both libraries. Additional responsibilities include:

  • Survey accessions and create records in Archivists’ Toolkit for new and legacy collections.
  • Develop and implement processing plans.
  • Prepare descriptive finding aids in accordance with DACS, the Virginia Heritage Best Practice Guidelines for Encoded Archival Description, and institutional practices.
  • Assist University Archivist with survey of the institution’s textual records.
  • Assist with collection inventories and location guides in preparation for library construction and renovation.
  • Assist with the rehousing of collections following best practices for storage and preservation.
  • May supervise and train interns, students, and volunteers to assist with collection processing.


Required: ALA-accredited graduate degree or master’s degree in appropriate discipline. Demonstrated experience working in and fostering a diverse faculty, staff, and student environment or commitment to do so as a faculty member at VCU.

Preferred: Professional archival processing experience or advanced course work in archival theory and methodology. Demonstrated understanding of the principles of arrangement and description, familiarity with archival standards, specifically DACS and EAD, and basic preservation standards for archival materials. Familiarity with archival theory and techniques in using MPLP (minimal processing) for collection arrangement and description. Experience using Archivists’ Toolkit. Proven ability to synthesize information and understand hierarchical relationships within a collection. Demonstrated organizational skills and the ability to prioritize tasks and meet deadlines. Ability to work independently and collaboratively in a production-oriented, team environment. Demonstrated oral and written communication skills. Ability and willingness to shift boxes weighing up to 40 lbs.

Virginia Commonwealth University and the VCU Libraries

Virginia Commonwealth University is Virginia’s largest research university, enrolling   nearly 32,000 students. Located in Richmond, Virginia (, VCU offers 41 doctoral, 74 masters, 3 professional, and 64 baccalaureate degree programs. Thirty-two of VCU's graduate, professional programs are ranked by U.S. News & World Report as among the best in the nation, with 19 programs ranking in the top 25 and two programs — sculpture and nurse anesthesia — ranked number one. Over 3,200 faculty comprise the University's teaching force. Research strengths at the University include health and life sciences, education, engineering, social work, behavioral sciences, public affairs, advertising and design, and the fine arts. Sponsored research funding totals over $260 million, placing VCU among the top 100 research institutions in the United States.  VCU’s strategic plan embraces an acceleration in the growth of VCU’s library system and includes a new Master Site Plan that envisions additions to both library facilities operated by the VCU Libraries. Architectural work has begun on a major addition to and renovation of the James Branch Cabell Library that is expected to open in 2015.

Libraries at Virginia Commonwealth University (including the James Branch Cabell Library on the Monroe Park Campus and the Tompkins-McCaw Library for the Health Sciences on the MCV Campus) employ 51 professionals and 90 support staff with an annual budget exceeding $17.5 million. VCU also operates programs in Doha, Qatar, including a library supporting the program there, Northern Virginia, and in various additional locations throughout the U.S. and the world. The VCU Libraries is a Resource Library in the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and a member of the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries, SPARC, CNI, BioMed Central, and the Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA), a statewide networking consortium for shared access to electronic and print resources.  The VCU Libraries has adopted Primo as its discovery layer and is one of the first libraries worldwide to have implemented Alma as its next generation cloud-based system for library management. CONTENTdm and DSpace supplement the foundation of its system architecture to enhance access to its collections and services.

Salary: Salary commensurate with experience, not less than $45,000 annually. This is a full-time, non-tenured faculty position. Normal faculty benefits apply, including 24 vacation days annually and choice of retirement and annuity plans. For more information about benefits, see

For more information about the VCU Libraries, please visit our home page at Review of applications will begin December 15, 2013 and will continue until the position is filled. For full consideration, applications must be received prior to December 23, 2013. Position to begin January 10, 2014. Submit cover letter, resume, and the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of three references to:

Pamela H. Fraga
Assistant to the University Librarian
VCU Libraries, Virginia Commonwealth University
901 Park Avenue
PO Box 842033
Richmond, VA 23284-2033
804-828-0151 (fax)

Virginia Commonwealth University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer.

Women, minorities, and persons with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

VCU Libraries

James Branch Cabell Library Monroe Park Campus
901 Park Ave., Richmond, VA 23284-2033
Toll-free: (866) 828-2665
(804) 828-1111
All Libraries
Tompkins-McCaw Library MCV Campus
509 N. 12th St., Richmond, VA 23298-0582
Toll-free: (866) 828-2665
(804) 828-0636

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