Please note that volunteer program enrollment and most volunteer opportunities run on a school-year calendar. Opportunities are subject to change, and many opportunities are paused while we evaluate how safest to proceed during the pandemic.
You must be 18 years or over to apply. Due to the request for a one-year minimum volunteer commitment, HMNS does not provide hours for community service or hours for volunteer service projects.
Volunteers are essential to the educational mission of the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Explore all the different ways to get involved at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Note: Volunteer opportunities during the pandemic are limited and subject to change. Before participating in volunteer opportunities, prospective volunteers must attend orientation and fulfill training requirements.
Previous Volunteer Programs Include:
*These are currently paused during the pandemic.
Be a Docent!
At HMNS, docents serve as both teachers and tour guides for visitors. Endless possibilities are open to docents! Teaching experience is not necessary; and training for each of the exhibit halls and docent positions is provided.
- Early Investigations, Kindergarten – Fifth Grade Program: Early Investigations helps young minds become interested in science. Docents lead the students on a tour of an exhibit hall, and then take them back to the classroom for hands-on classroom learning. Topics covered include: Energy, Africa, Ancient Egypt, Insect Zoo, Native North America, Hall of Americas South, Paleontology, Texas Wildlife and Under the Sea.
- Docents To-Go: The Docent To-Go program takes the fun and wonder of the museums to the public! The docents present a 45 minute-1 hour interactive session for schools and other organizations. Program themes include: Energy, Insects, Native Americans, Oceans, Paleontology, Rocks and Minerals, and Texas Wildlife.
- Floor Presenter Docents: Learn all about science while giving informal presentations from a touch cart in the Museum exhibit halls. Choose from a variety of subjects displayed in our permanent exhibit halls. Hours are flexible, weekday or weekend times available.
- Tours: Present specially requested tours of the Museum’s exhibit halls, the Cockrell Butterfly Center and special exhibitions to school, church, corporate, and other groups. Hours are flexible, weekday or weekend times available.
- Special Exhibits: Explore different subjects as traveling exhibitions come to the museum! Special Exhibit docents help guide visitors through the special exhibits, whether it’s by sitting at the touch cart, leading tours, or just being in the exhibit to answer questions. Hours are flexible, weekday and weekend times available.
- Butterfly Center: Learn everything you ever wanted to know about butterflies! As a docent in the Cockrell Butterfly Center, you will give informal presentations and answer questions for Museum visitors. Hours are flexible, weekday or weekend times available.
- HISD Tour Docent Program: This program is designed for the 4th graders of the Houston Independent School District. Students come in Monday through Friday, 10am-12:15 pm during the school year for 45-minute tours of the permanent exhibit halls. HISD docents make their own schedule of when they come in.
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Volunteer at our Satellite Facilities!
Our Hermann Park location isn’t the only place for volunteers! Check out our satellite locations and the amazing opportunities they offer! For more information about volunteering at our satellite facilities, please contact Kavita Self at email@example.com.
- George Observatory at Brazos Bend State Park: See stars when you volunteer at the George Observatory at Brazos Bend State Park. This is a great opportunity for those interested in astronomy. Help visitors view the sky through telescopes, or work behind-the-scenes at this landmark facility. Learn more about the George Observatory here.
- Houston Museum of Natural Science at Sugar Land: A historic building offers a new world of exploration for area schools as well as the people of Fort Bend County. In addition to exhibits on Paleontology and Space Science, the new Hall of Technology exhibit features chemistry, geology, energy, and salt. Learn more about volunteering at HMNS Sugar Land here.