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Current Volunteer Needs

The following opportunities are currently available. To apply for any of these positions, please complete the volunteer application. The Volunteer Department will contact you to schedule an interview or invite you to an upcoming Open House. If you have specific questions, please call 619.255.0245 or volunteers@sdnhm.org  

Upcoming Volunteer Open House:

Tuesday, August 11; 6-7:30 PM
Wednesday, September 2; 6-7:30 PM 

Please complete a volunteer application to receive an invitation. 

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Explore Maya Culture as an Exhibit Interpreter

Volunteer as an Exhibit Interpreter in our traveling exhibition, Maya: Hidden Worlds RevealedAs an Exhibit Interpreter, you collect admission tickets, guide guests through the exhibition, and staff one of several interpretive stations where you can share information about specific elements of the Maya culture. One 3.5 hour shift per week for a minimum of 3 months is requested. Shifts are 10 AM–1:30 PM or 1:30–5 PM daily. Apply today. 

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Put Your Teaching Skills to Work as a Museum Docent

Become a San Diego Natural History Museum Docent and share your love of the natural world with young and old alike. Docents are trained by Museum curators and other local experts to connect people with the rich biodiversity of the region. Hop aboard the Museum-on-Wheels and educate students in local schools or engage the public in the Museum. Training is held consecutive Wednesdays September 9, 2015–March 30, 2016 from 9 AM–3 PM. Application deadline is August 21, 2015. A weekly commitment for two years is required. Apply today. 

Whalers in action

Share Your Love of the Ocean as a Museum Whaler

Join an enthusiastic crew of volunteer naturalists on board Hornblower Whale and Dolphin Watching Cruises. The Museum Whalers are trained by scientists from NOAA and other local experts to educate the public about the wonders of the ocean and the whales that are seen off the coast of southern California. Training is held Tuesdays from October 6–December 8, 2015 from 6:30–9 PM. A commitment of three cruises per month (mid-December through April) is requested. Apply today for the fall training. Application deadline is September 9, 2015

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Explore the Wild Side of San Diego as a Canyoneer

Canyoneers lead free guided nature walks from the coast to the desert. They are trained by Museum curators and other local experts to inspire appreciation of the plants and animals in southern California. Training is 10 consecutive Saturdays from September 12–November 14, 2015; 8 AM–3 PM. A minimum commitment of six hikes per year for two years is expected. Apply today. Application deadline is August 15, 2015. To see the Canyoneers in action, take a Canyoneer hike

Help Us Learn More about Our Visitors

Public Programs is seeking volunteers to help conduct visitor surveys in the Museum. Requirements include: An outgoing personality, an ability to approach strangers, and on-the-job training on conducting surveys. Flexible schedule. Apply today. 

Share Your Enthusiasm for Nature with Museum Visitors

Join the Museum as an Exhibit Interpreter in our exhibition, Water: A California Story. You’ll use inquiry-based learning to educate our guests about the ecosystems of San Diego County and about water distribution and conservation. As an option, you can also be trained to conduct live animal demonstrations with our gopher snake, rosy boa snakes, or a bearded dragon. This is a 7-day a week opportunity with a 2 hour shift (11 AM-1 PM or 1 PM-3 PM). A minimum 3 month commitment is expected. Apply today.


For other volunteer opportunities in the San Diego area, visit the Cultural Volunteer Managers Council website