Behind-the-Scenes Volunteers

Our behind-the-scenes volunteers help support a wide range of essential services to The Field Museum’s administrative, scientific and exhibitions departments. Click here to apply.

School Programs and Partnership Volunteer


The Field Museum’s School Programs and Partnerships team develops and implements collaborative partnerships, programs and resources that enhance instruction and enrich student learning in grades preK to 12 through the use of Museum resources.  A volunteer working with this team will support the day-to-day operations of the N. W. Harris Learning Collection. The Museum’s Learning Collection is comprised of diverse cultural artifacts, biological specimens and dioramas made available to teachers and parents for engaging students in object-based learning. 

Responsibilities:

  • Communicating efficiently and courteously with customers in person, over the phone or via email
  • Learning the Learning Collection web system, including the customer web site and online data base
  • Maintaining accurate inventory of existing materials
  • Organizing and replacing materials
  • Assisting with data entry and general administrative tasks
  • Other tasks as assigned

Qualifications:

  • Ability to communicate effectively and efficiently with Learning Collection members
  • Strong interest in museum education, collections management, or related field required
  • Strong organizational skills and detail-oriented required
  • Ability to work and make decisions independently required
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office applications (MS Word, Excel, PowerPoint) required
  • Experience using Adobe Illustrator or other design software preferred
  • Ability to stand for long periods of time and to lift up to 25lbs. 
  • Must be available to volunteer for at least 3 months, one day a week.  Volunteers are needed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays 3 pm – 7 pm and Saturdays 9 am – 5 pm.  Click here to apply.
Collection Center Volunteer Work alongside our collections staff and contribute to the The Field Museum’s world-renowned Anthropology, Botany, Geology and Zoology collections. 


Responsibilities:

  • Count, sort and digitize (photograph or scan) artifacts, specimens, and collections records.
  • Transcribe collection labels and transfer data into excel spreadsheets and/or database.
  • Produce new foam support housing and boxes for collection specimens and artifacts.
  • Other duties as assigned

Qualifications:

  • Attention to detail, good organization, computer, and manual dexterity skills. 
  • Academic or professional background in Anthropology, Botany, Geology or Zoology is preferred. 
  • Volunteers must be available to volunteer for at least 6 months, one day a week, Monday – Friday from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm.  No weekend placements available.  Click here to apply.
Fishes Archives Volunteer


Fishes Collections department is looking for volunteer to help database scientific journal reprints in the Seth E. Meek Fishes Library at The Field Museum.  The reprints in our library date back to the early/mid 1900s.  Specifically, we would like to organize the citations for these reprints into a database so they are searchable to The Field Museum Fishes staff, as well as visiting researchers to the museum. 

Responsibilities:

  • Input reference citations in the Seth E. Meek Fishes Library into The Field Museum’s database program. 
  • Digitizing some of the rare reprints in our collections.

Qualifications:

  • Strong organizational and databasing skills.
  • A background in library science a plus.
  • An interest in scientific journals and fishes.
  • Must be available to volunteer for at least 3 months, one day a week, Monday – Friday for at least 4 hours each day.  Click here to apply.
Exhibition Volunteers


Help the Field Museum’s Exhibitions department develop and maintain its world-class exhibits. 

Responsibilities:

  • Assist with the development of exhibits by producing exhibit prototypes and models. 
  • Clean and repair existing exhibits and displays.
  • Other duties as assigned

Qualifications:

  • Strong manual dexterity skills
  • Proficient in the use of shop tools and equipment. 
  • Academic or professional background in fine arts or industrial shop preferred. 
  • Volunteers may be required to pass a pulmonary function exam and respirator test depending on the assigned duties. 
  • Volunteers must be available to volunteer for at least 6 months, one day a week, Monday – Friday from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm.  No weekend placements available.  Click here to apply.
Administrative Volunteers

Support the Field Museum’s many administrative offices by assisting with general administrative tasks.

Responsibilities:

  • Maintain general office files and file necessary paperwork accordingly.
  • Sorting and distributing mail.
  • Providing support for departmental meetings and events.
  • Updating and maintaining departmental databases.

Qualifications:

  • Good organization, filing, computer, and communication skills.
  • Proficient in maintaining databases and have the ability to create and manipulate spreadsheets. 
  • Volunteers must be available to volunteer for at least 6 months, one day a week, Monday – Friday from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm.  No weekend placements available.  Click here to apply.
Fossil Preparator Volunteer

Prepare and preserve fossils for study, display and storage in one of our fossil prep laboratories. 

Responsibilities:

  • Remove rock and sediment from fossils using dental tools.
  • Sorting microfossils. 
  • Other duties as needed.

Qualifications:

  • Excellent hand-eye coordination, manual dexterity skills, and great attention to detail. 
  • Patience to see a project through to completion and must be comfortable using a microscope. 
  • Volunteers should have a strong interest in paleontology or geology and must pass a fossil preparation test before being accepted. 
  • Volunteers must be available to volunteer for a minimum of 1 year, one day a week, Monday – Saturday from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm.  Click here to apply.
Conservation Education Volunteer

Support the implementation of environmental education field trips to natural areas in Chicago’s southeast side communities. The Field Museum’s Science Action Center is involved in conservation education that engages 4th -12th grade students, community groups, and educators in the Calumet Region.  Click here for more information.

Responsibilities:

  • Lead small groups (about 15 youth) in educational and/or monitoring activities.
  • Lead small groups in exploration activities through woodland, wetland or prairie sites.
  • Assist in the supervision of students engaged in environmental stewardship activities, which includes proper tool handling, group management, invasive species identification and removal, etc.

Qualifications:

  • Experience teaching and background in environmental studies a plus.
  • Have access to transportation to stewardship sites (Calumet, IL area).
  • Enjoy working outdoors and working with children.
  • Volunteers must be available to volunteer for a minimum 1-year and attend at least 6 field trips.  Field trips are 3 hours long and occur every fall, winter, and spring.  Click here to apply.