WFMT Studs Terkel Radio Archive Transcription Internship

Location: Chicago, IL
Job Code: 77
# of openings: 1


The Studs Terkel Radio Archive, a partnership between the WFMT Radio Network and the Chicago History Museum, is looking for an intern to accurately transcribe programs based off an automatically generated transcription in the archive.  This internship can be completed onsite or remotely.

Transcription is a vital element in how we share Studs Terkel’s radio legacy. The transcription intern will use cutting edge browser-based text-to-speech technology to correct automatic transcripts via Trint ( Completed transcripts are an important part of rounding out the archival record.  This internship requires critical listening skills and attention to detail. Interns are expected to actively transcribe and conduct related research for four hours each week.

The transcription intern will be exposed to a primary source collection that documents the second half of the twentieth century in the United States like no other and will improve critical listening and research skills.

General Information

  • The internship is designed to provide experience in the description and organization of a digital collection.  Because of the nature of the collection and how we share it, we do not use RDA or a specific metadata schema.  Instead, we use our own taxonomy, plus natural language and LCSH tags.
  • Studs Terkel was a Pulitzer Prize winning author, and spent nearly fifty years broadcasting a daily radio show out of WFMT in Chicago.  He interviewed well-known guests, such as Muhammad Ali, Oliver Sacks, Nora Ephron, and Mahalia Jackson; as well as people his audience may never have heard of, including teachers, activists, union leaders, taxi drivers, and doctors.  Studs was very interested in social justice movements, such as Civil Rights, migrant workers’ rights, and LGBT+ community rights, and he used his show as a platform to document and share those movements.
  • Candidates must be able to commit to listening and transcribing at least four hours per week.
  • Interns should stay for the length of a summer or a semester.
  • This is an unpaid internship. WFMT will work with schools for student interns receiving credit, but receiving credit is not required.
  • Eligible candidates must be graduate student in a library or information science (or related) program, and must have completed one graduate archival science class and one metadata and/or cataloging class.
  • Eligible candidates must hold an undergraduate degree, or have equivalent knowledge in a relevant topic: humanities, social science, natural science.
  • Eligible candidates must be at least 18 years old.


The ideal candidate must be comfortable working in a digital/online environment, including searching a digital asset manager; and must have strong research skills.  Must critically listen and pay close attention to detail.  Must be able to manage time and tasks; this is a self-directed internship.  The intern(s) will work with the Archivist and Digital Content Librarian to establish priorities.


  • Listening critically and transcribing programs.
  • Following the transcription style guide, and responding to critical feedback from archive staff.
  • Researching topics, names, titles, places, etc. that appear in the program to ensure accurate spelling.

Application Process

Interested students should attach their resume and cover letter expressing their qualifications and interest in the internship.  Candidates who are believed to be a good match will then be invited to complete an application and come in for an interview.

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