McWane Science Center offers a variety of rewarding volunteer experiences for adults who want to give back to their community, learn something new, and share their knowledge with visitors. Adult volunteers work in a variety of departments across the science center. You can find them answering questions at the information desk in the Grand Lobby, caring for salt and freshwater animals in the World of Water, performing hands-on science demonstrations in the Adventure Hall, and more! Our Adult Volunteers are from all walks of life and educational backgrounds but have one thing in common – a passion for life-long learning.
Science Engagement Interpreters are an integral part of the visitor experience at McWane. They present hands-on
science activities and demonstrations at interpretive stations throughout the science center and enhance visitor
interaction and engagement with exhibits in the Adventure Hall. Science Engagement Interpreters should have
excellent communication and interpersonal skills, a desire to learn, and a willingness to work with visitors of all ages.
We expect a volunteer commitment of one-year of service with 8 volunteer hours per month.
Like our Science Engagement Interpreters, Docents engage visitors through hands-on science activities and exhibit
interpretation. Docents are also trained to present public programs like McWane’s Combustion and Lightning Strikes
programs in the Rushton Theater or Animal Encounters in NatureScope. Science Engagement Docents should have
significant experience in a STEM field including, but not limited to, graduate work and career experience. Docents
must also have communication and interpersonal skills, a desire to learn, and a willingness to work with visitors of all
ages in small and large group settings. We expect a volunteer commitment of one-year of service with 12 volunteer
hours per month.
Make a great first impression and help visitors navigate the science center. Information Desk Attendants greet visitors
and provide answers to questions about McWane and the metro Birmingham area. Information Desk Attendants
should be approachable, friendly, and have excellent communication and customer service skills.
Aquarist Volunteers assist the McWane Aquarists in the maintenance of fresh and saltwater fish, invertebrates, and
reptile species, as well as the systems these animals inhabit. They learn daily, weekly, and monthly husbandry duties
required to sustain our aquatic collection and keep the exhibits looking great. Aquarist Volunteers should be self
motivated with a desire to learn and a willingness to get wet and dirty while cleaning the tanks and preparing food.
Aquarist volunteers should also be able to stand, stoop, or kneel for extended periods of time.
Are you interested in sharing your love of science with the public, but cannot make a regular weekly commitment?
Have you considered volunteering for our public events like LEGO Day, Maker Day, or Noon Year’s Eve? What about
our adults-only nights, McWane After Dark? McWane has a variety of one-time events that are all a little different!
Spontaneous Science Volunteers assist with the set up and take down of events, help facilitate science activities and
demonstrations, and much more! The flexible time commitment makes this a great option for college students or
anyone with busy or unpredictable schedules. Volunteers are notified at least monthly when a McWane event needs
support and can choose which opportunities fit into their schedules.
1. Fill out and submit an online application
2. Attend an interview
3. Complete and return DHR and criminal background check forms
4. Attend orientation and all training sessions provided and required by McWane Science Center
Weekend orientations occur monthly from September to June. If your application is approved, you will receive an email with instructions to sign up for an orientation session. Orientation includes a tour of the science center, policies and procedures, and customer service training. Volunteers receive on-the-job-training in their assigned areas.