Work at NBSS

NBSS is a highly regarded nonprofit learning institution that offers a welcoming and collaborative environment in Boston’s North End. We’re small but ambitious, supporting the School’s mission to help students achieve meaningful lives and livelihoods.

As we build on the School’s legacy of fine craftsmanship, we seek positive, dynamic individuals who share our dedication to innovation, excellence, and superior customer service.

View open positions below.

Director of Institutional Support
Exhibition Intern
Front Desk Receptionist

Director of Institutional Support

Position Overview

The renowned North Bennet Street School (NBSS), an esteemed Boston institution where the time-honored tradition of fine craftsmanship remains a vital influence on the City’s culture and economy, seeks a thoughtful and proactive relationship builder to serve as its new Director of Institutional Support (Director). The Director will serve as the primary connector between NBSS and corporate and foundation communities, actively seeking and crafting mutually beneficial partnerships that deepen existing and forge new relationships. With the recent launch of its strategic plan focused on growth, diversification, and community impact, this is an exceptional moment to join the institution.

America’s first trade school, NBSS is a welcoming, collaborative institution located in Boston’s historic North End. For over 140 years, the small, ambitious School has helped generations of students achieve meaningful lives and livelihoods through craft and trade disciplines. The range of accredited and non-accredited offerings from NBSS today include professional career training programs, skill-building classes and experiences, public programs, exhibitions, community partnerships, and more.

The School’s institutional funders currently support a range of initiatives including scholarships for veterans and underrepresented populations in skill and trade, workforce development, community education, and financial aid with ample room to broaden and attract additional funding. Of particular interest to funders is the range of initiatives that positively impact diversity, equity, and inclusion at NBSS. These initiatives are focused on the School’s work to increase and support diversities of race, ethnicity, gender, gender-identity, sexual orientation, and socio-economics, with attention to ability-diversity and neuro-diversity. Initiatives and programs include, among others:

  • Teaching Assistant Program to train and attract future faculty, and which will help increase representation in mentorship at NBSS and diversity the fields in which students are trained.
  • Workforce Development Initiative Scholarships awarded to qualified applicants with high economic need, and which increase access for those facing high economic barriers.
  • Impact Scholarships that provide need-based funding, and which will increase diverse representation in the fields of craft or trade.
  • Student Wellness services that address students’ unique needs for overall health and wellness and support Affinity Groups such as LGBTQ+ Club, Veterans Association, Black & Brown Creatives, and a meditation gathering.

Reporting to the Director of Development, Colleen Walsh Powell, the Director will advance the School’s mission by serving as the single point-of-contact for strategic relationship planning and coordination for institutional funders. The Director will assume a warm portfolio of longstanding relationships–mainly reflective of foundation donors and prospects and some government and corporate–with direct involvement in the identification, cultivation, and solicitation of major gifts (five- and six-figures). They will research, identify, pursue, develop, and respond to grant opportunities; partner with faculty and administration to develop and submit proposals for funding; and fully steward grants – inclusive of timely administration, budgeting, and reporting–while providing faculty with funder-related guidance as needed.

Highly collaborative, mission-driven, and student-focused, the Director will be asked to explore growth possibilities and synergies such as in the design of multi-faceted corporate partnerships, whether with large institutions or small business partners, perhaps by leveraging existing programs such as Partners in Craft and In the Making. They may also lend strategic thought to faculty and Development colleagues who serve as primary relationship managers to intersecting donors and prospects.


  • Identify and pursue long-term, mutually beneficial partnerships with foundations, corporations, and government that offer expanded reach and revenue support for NBSS and its institutional priorities, either through philanthropic dollars, gifts-in-kind, or other agreements.
  • Structure and submit timely, well-researched, and well-documented proposals to generate both unrestricted and restricted funding.
  • Conduct and track the full range of activities required to prepare, submit, and manage grant proposals with a steady focus on pipeline building by continuously researching institutional funders to evaluate prospects for grants.
  • Build trusted relationships and regularly meet with faculty and other stakeholders to learn, brainstorm, and gather information that informs the creation of detailed and strategic proposals.
  • Develop strategies to engage key foundation and corporate partners and encourage greater involvement with the institution; build trusted relationships with program officers and corporate executives.
  • Design and implement tailored site and campus visits (in-person and virtual) and other cultivation activities for foundation officers and trustees.
  • Schedule and participate in cultivation/solicitation visits with the President, Director of Development, department heads and faculty, and key volunteers.
  • Comply with all grant reporting requirements and provide stewardship to current donors including regular written updates and financial tracking.
  • Work with the Business Office to gather information necessary for accurate and on-time reporting to institutional donors on current grant programs.
  • Work with the Marketing & Engagement department to contribute to the development of communication and marketing strategies for institutional funders.
  • Maintain current records in electronic (database) and paper files, including grant tracking and reporting.
  • Assist with capital campaign logistics, events, and other fundraising projects, as requested.


  • 3-5 years of fundraising experience that includes at least three years of grant writing with a proven track record of cultivating and securing foundation, corporate, and government support.
  • Proficient in researching, interpreting, and analyzing diverse data.
  • Exceptional written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to work independently in achieving both engagement and revenue goals.
  • Customer-oriented with superior attention-to-detail, follow-up skills, and high level of responsiveness.
  • Ability to produce high-quality work within tight time constraints and on deadline.
  • An entrepreneurial spirit, one that takes initiative and actively seeks to deepen current donor relationships and forge new ones.
  • Lives the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion with the ability to express these through day-to-day work.
  • Proficiency in MS Office Suite (particularly Excel), Google Drive, and development databases (eTapestry or Raiser’s Edge experience a plus).
  • An appreciation for trade and craft and an understanding of the unique nature and mission of North Bennet Street School.
  • Willingness to occasionally travel locally and regionally to meet donors and prospects.
  • Ability to work occasional evenings and weekends for events.
  • Bachelor’s degree or relevant professional experience.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Our evolution as a School asks us to work toward economic, racial, and social justice in our communities. What we learn from our own history informs how NBSS can improve the ways we welcome, support, and celebrate diversities across race, ethnicity, gender, gender-identity, sexual orientation, socio-economics, and ability. As a craft and trade school, we believe that teaching people meaningful and useful skills empowers them with their own agency. This work transcends discipline and gets to the heart of our educational philosophy. We are actively engaged in making an impact—at all levels of our School, in ways large and small, and with the optimism and conviction that are the hallmarks of our community.

Vision Statement
In keeping with North Bennet Street School’s mission and history and as leaders and stewards in craft and trade education, NBSS dedicates itself to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusivity throughout our school, community, and in the fields we serve. To engage the whole person, we must support the whole person.

We are committed to continuously cultivating and maintaining a welcoming and inclusive community where individual differences are expected, supported, respected, and valued. We embrace our obligation to improve our institution’s culture, strengthen our partnerships, and positively impact the future of the industries for which we train.

This work is necessary for the School to advance trade and craft traditions and contribute to the change we hope to see in our communities. Therefore, it is our responsibility to eliminate barriers to access and inclusion, and to expand opportunities to pursue a livelihood free from disrespectful behavior, harassment, and discrimination. We recognize that structural social barriers are a part of all organizations, and only through work by everyone, will greater change be made.

Learn more about the School’s work to advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

How to Apply

Please submit your resume and cover letter to Adele Mezher and Maeve Clifford, Managing Partners at Pearl Street Collective, a national women-owned search firm connecting people with their purpose, are leading the search.

Date posted: February 1, 2023

Exhibition Intern

America’s first trade school, North Bennet Street School, is a welcoming, collaborative institution located in Boston’s historic North End. For over 140 years, the small, ambitious School has helped generations of students achieve meaningful lives and livelihoods through craft and trade disciplines. The range of accredited and non-accredited offerings from NBSS today include professional career training programs, skill-building classes and experiences, public programs, exhibitions, community partnerships, and more. As NBSS prepares students for lifelong careers involving hand skills and evolving technologies, the School is a quiet force behind much of our cultural life, in particular for the decorative arts and preservation. 

This paid internship opportunity is supported by the Decorative Arts Trust as part of its Emerging Scholars Program. The Decorative Arts Trust’s IDEAL Internships focus on inclusivity, diversity, equity, access, and leadership. The IDEAL internship is intended to create valuable professional opportunities for members of underrepresented communities seeking museum careers. 

The intern will help with planning, researching, curating, installing, and programming for the School’s upcoming In the Making (ITM) exhibition, which will run from September through December of 2023. In the Making is a series of free public programs now in its third year, featuring over 50 individuals and groups representing a range of diverse fields related to various disciplines. The series is produced with an intentional effort to feature voices that are underrepresented in craft and traditional trade. The ITM exhibition will bring together work by the makers featured in the first three years of the series.

The intern will provide needed support with receiving and handling work, including writing condition reports; gallery layout planning, staging, and installation; labels and signage; and  public programming such as tours, live virtual programming, and social media. They will attend, as appropriate, staff meetings, engagement team meetings, and any other gatherings that  provide additional experience. As for a capstone project, the intern will develop and present an overview of the exhibition that could also be transferable to a digital format so that it is widely accessible and can be added to the intern’s professional portfolio.

This internship will be a comprehensive, hands-on opportunity, and will appeal to someone who enjoys research but who also is comfortable with the physical work of exhibition installation. The intern will be encouraged to visit collections and sites in and around Boston that will enhance the planning of the ITM exhibition and the overall internship experience. 

The internship will begin in May 2023 and will last through the end of the exhibition in December. The intern will be paid $17/hour, with the majority of working hours to take place between May and August (18 weeks), in preparation for the exhibition. Applicants should be able to commit to approximately 16 hours of work per week, Monday – Thursday, 7:30 am – 3:00 pm. These hours do not include approximately 6-10 hours over the duration of the internship for programming such as public conversations, lectures, or tours.

NBSS will consider applications from high school and undergraduate students who are interested in a discipline taught at the school, who will benefit from this experience as part of a pathway toward a curatorial career, and who identify as members of groups that are underrepresented in the museum field. 

How to Apply

Application deadline: Extended to March 20, 2023.

Please fill out our brief application form: you can either fill out this online form, or download this pdf form, fill out, and email to Please feel free to include your resume and/or portfolio with your application.

Please contact Kristen Odle, Retail & Exhibits Manager, at or 617-227-0155 x 140 with any questions.

Date posted: February 7, 2023

Front Desk Receptionist

Position Overview

We are seeking a Front Desk Receptionist to serve as the first point of contact between North Bennet Street School and its students, faculty, staff, and the general public. The Front Desk Receptionist’s primary responsibility is to provide a welcoming environment while representing and communicating the core values of the School. This person is also responsible for answering incoming telephone calls, greeting everyone who enters the School and supporting all areas of the School.  

The ideal candidate is enthusiastic about working with others positively impacting the school community. This candidate will be a self-starter who shows a great deal of initiative and have the ability to work collaboratively with a team and independently. We offer a friendly, welcoming institution that values work-life balance.

The Front Desk Receptionist is a full-time, in-person (40 hours, Mon-Fri) hourly position. Starting range for this position is $21-$24/hour commensurate on experience. NBSS offers a comprehensive and competitive benefits package including health and life insurance, STD, LTD, retirement plan and more.

Essential Job Duties

Administrative Support

  • Sort and distribute incoming mail and packages
  • Process outgoing mail
  • Assist with daily Admission packets, mailings, and special events
  • Maintain multiple Google Calendars
  • Manage orders, inventory, and storage of office supply and provide purchasing assistance 
  • Provide administrative support to faculty and staff, including Community Education
  • Answer and screen all incoming telephone calls and monitor general email accounts 
  • Address inquiries personally or direct calls and emails to the appropriate department when necessary
  • Assist with T-pass orders and distribution to staff, faculty, and students
  • Track employee vacation and sick time
  • Maintain contact information database 
  • Serve as liaison to Student Workers

Building & Security

  • Open the School daily on weekdays at 7:00 am
  • Greet and welcome everyone who enters the School
  • Assist Visitors with signing in and provide them with Visitor badges and directions to their destination
  • Assist with parking logistics
  • Monitor video security system during the day

Academic Support

  • Review Career Training student attendance and prepare reports for faculty
  • Assist faculty with scheduling space for program events in the building
  • General administrative assistance

Preparation, Knowledge, Skills, & Abilities

  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, experienced in dealing with the public with a professional presentation and a high level of customer service
  • Detail-oriented, with the ability to successfully manage multiple tasks simultaneously 
  • Demonstrated diplomacy, judgment, initiative and critical thinking skills and ability to maintain strict confidentiality
  • Computer proficiency, including Microsoft Office and Google Suites
  • Experience with a craft and an understanding of the unique nature and mission of North Bennet Street School is welcomed but not required

Working Conditions & Physical Demands

  • Must be able to frequently walk up and down stairs
  • Must be able to lift more than 25 lbs. and assist others to do the same
  • Walking, standing, and bending for long periods of time

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to do this job. The above is not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and duties required.

How to Apply

Please send your cover letter and resume to with “Front Desk Receptionist” in the subject line by April 3, 2023.  

Date posted: March 13: 2023

We are committed to equal employment opportunity for all, and encourages application from a diverse group of people. Applicants for employment and employees are reviewed on their individual qualifications for a position. Under no circumstances will NBSS discriminate against qualified persons on the basis of race, color, religious creed, retaliation, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, gender, disability, mental illness, genetics, marital status, age, veteran status, or any other basis prohibited under applicable law.

Applicants, as well as position incumbents, who become disabled as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act must be able to perform the essential job functions (as listed) either unaided or with the assistance of a reasonable accommodation to be determined by management on a casebycase basis.

Our School provides a number of benefits to full-time employees. This includes generous time off, medical/dental insurance (view our health plan pricing), a 403(b) retirement plan, professional development opportunities, and more.