The Smithsonian Resident Associate Program offers a stunning variety of educational and cultural programs that open the doors to the Smithsonian's world of opportunity.

About Us

Experience and Enjoy the Smithsonian as an Insider

Smithsonian Associates-the largest museum-based education program in the world-produces vibrant educational and cultural programming that offer unparalleled access to the Smithsonian’s world of knowledge.

Inspired by the Smithsonian’s research, collections, and exhibitions, each year more than 750 individual programs are presented to spark creativity and excite learning in people of all ages.

Take a Look at What We Do

Programs, seminars, courses, and more

The monthly calendar offers a stimulating and entertaining range of events covering the full scope of the humanities, sciences, and arts. Join experts in everything from archeology to literature to high-tech espionage as they share insights, discoveries, and new ideas.

One-of-a-kind performances and music programs

Smithsonian Associates presents concerts by resident ensembles: the Emerson String Quartet, the Smithsonian Chamber Music Society, and the Axelrod String Quartet (playing rare instruments from the Smithsonian collections).

Studio arts courses that bring color to your life

Whether you're inspired to pick up a paintbrush, camera, or calligrapher's pen, a whole palette of choices awaits you. Hands-on classes led by professional artists are offered in a variety of formats from one-day workshops to multisession classes.

Tours that travel through history and the imagination

Day and overnight study tours take groups beyond the National Mall. Follow in the footsteps of history at Civil War battlefields, visit stunning exhibitions at museums along the East Coast; join experts in art, design, architecture, and science on special-topic tours.

There's Even More to Smithsonian Associates

Discovery Theater

Some 50,000 children annually experience live, educational performances at the Smithsonian Associates’ Discovery Theater. Actors, musicians, and puppeteers animate topics such as cultural heritage and folklore, scientific exploration, creativity, and invention for students and families from pre-K through elementary school.

Smithsonian Summer Camps

More than 90 weeklong and two-week intensive summer day camps enable children from kindergarten through eighth-grade one-of-a kind opportunities to develop new skills guided by scientists, researchers, museum curators, writers, and visual and performing artists-and have plenty of fun in the process.

Smithsonian Sleepovers

Smithsonian Associates presents customized nighttime experiences for groups and families with children ages 8-12 in sleepover events at the Natural History Museum, American History Museum and the Air and Space Museum’s Udvar Hazy Center.

Smithsonian at 8

Inspired by the world of the Smithsonian, the Smithsonian at 8 event series offers one-of-a-kind experiences for guests ages 21 and up. With themes from the local to the global, these after-hours gatherings combine music, food and drink, and unique settings to create evenings that are smart, adventurous, and memorably entertaining.

MA in Decorative Arts and Design History

Through a partnership with George Washington University’s Corcoran School of the Arts and Design, students can pursue a Master of Arts degree in Decorative Arts and Design History. Students in the program are connected to the Smithsonian’s expansive network of professionals, research communities, and state-of-the-art conservation facilities.

Smithsonian Associates Art Collectors Program

Smithsonian Associates' Art Collectors Program invites collectors to purchase commissioned contemporary fine art prints and posters by acclaimed American artists. Proceeds support the educational and cultural programs of the Smithsonian Associates.

National Education Outreach

National Education Outreach facilitates educational and community programs across the country by engaging Smithsonian researchers, curators, historians, educators, and other museum professionals to share their expertise with students, teachers, and the general public.

Join Us as a Member!

Becoming a Smithsonian Associates member is one of the smartest and easiest ways to become a Smithsonian insider. Members receive a range of valuable benefits, including early ticket access, discounts, and more. In addition, members play a vital role in assuring that our tradition of excellence continues. Although Smithsonian Associates is part of the Smithsonian, we receive no federal funding and rely on support from individual supporters to help us bridge the gap between program expenses and ticket revenues.

Join today