gua: Florida Museum needs a few junior volunteers

Published: Thursday, April 1, 2010 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, March 31, 2010 at 3:32 p.m.

Parents - the Florida Museum of Natural History wants your children - but not for keeps, just for the summer,

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Junior volunteers will work alongside museum staff and will be trained and supervised. Hours also can be used toward graduation and scholar-ships. Last summer, 110 teens participated in the program.

Special to the Guardian



What: The Junior Volunteer summer program at the Florida Museum of Natural History.
When: June 14-Aug. 13.
Where: Florida Museum of Natural History, SW 34th Street and Hull Road.
Information: Call Julie Crosby at 273-2055 or e-mail jcrosby@flmnh.ufl.edu.

The Florida Museum is recruting boys and girls ages 12-17 for the Junior Volunteer summer program, and your teens can use the volunteer hours toward community service requirements for high school graduation and college scholarships.

Paul Ramey, assistant director in charge of marketing and public relations, said the Junior Volunteer summer program runs from June 14-Aug. 13, but the application deadline is Monday.

Applications are available during museum hours or they can be downloaded at www.flmnh.ufl.edu/volunteers/JVapplication.pdf and mailed - postmarked Monday - to Julie Crosby, Volunteer Coordinator, P.O. Box 112710, Gainesville, FL 32611-2710.

"The application process is handled like a job application and includes a job interview," said Ramey, adding that once in the program, junior volunteers are expected to be responsible, log in and out, and keep track of their time.

Volunteers will work alongside museum staff and will be trained and supervised.

They will work several schedules within the museum's hours of operation, which are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 1-5 p.m. Sunday.

Applicants must be 12 years old or older by June 1 and have completed sixth-grade. All new applicants will interview in person between noon and 6 p.m. on April 17. Mandatory training for all volunteers will take place on June 6.

Qualifications for the program include an interest in or experience with science, history, nature, service and/or working with children. Volunteers also must have a friendly and outgoing manner.

Ramey said a variety of positions are available for junior volunteers, including discovery cart attendant, discovery room assistant, camp teacher's assistant, puppeteers and exhibit docent.

He said returning volunteers can apply for field camp assistant, floater or rover junior volunteer and Butterfly Rainforest assistant. All positions are half-day, with the exception of field camps.

Ramey said the junior volunteer program helps children on many levels, including gaining self-confidence, developing interviewing skills, honing their speaking skills, and learning team work and responsibility. He said last year, 110 junior volunteers participated in the program.

"It's a rewarding experience that builds self-confidence and self-esteem," Ramey said.

For more information, call volunteer coordinator Julie Crosby at 273-2055 or e-mail jcrosby@flmnh.ufl.edu.

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