Get involved at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science by becoming a volunteer. Positions are available as needed in public outreach and occasionally in laboratory research and fieldwork.
Also note that a limited number of paid positions may be available at VIMS through our Summer Aide program, depending on faculty need and funding.
All volunteers must:
- Be at least 16 years of age
- Complete safety training before beginning in their position
- Gain a basic knowledge of VIMS' mission and goals
Outreach volunteers must:
- Be friendly and have effective communication skills
- Be comfortable in a dynamic environment
- Have a valid driver’s license and good driving record
VIMS Public Outreach Volunteers help create lasting connections with public audiences through fun and educational programs. Below are some of the opportunities available to Outreach Volunteers.
Fair/Festival Volunteer: Staff VIMS’ booth to share information about events, research, and Bay animals. Setup and breakdown includes lifting and bending. Paired with an experienced staffer, student, or volunteer.
Visitor Center Docent: Share VIMS' research with visitors through hand-on activities, aquaria, and exhibits.
Tour Guide and Support: Lead or assist a guide with walking tours of VIMS’ campus, sharing our history and mission with adults and older children, civic clubs, middle- and high-school students, and other organizations. Tours include laboratory visits to speak with scientists about current research, providing continuous learning opportunities for volunteers. Tours are offered on weekdays only.
Special Program Volunteer: Assist a VIMS Outreach staff member with educational programs offered on VIMS’ campus and at other locations. Setup and breakdown includes lifting and bending.
Registration Volunteer: Staff reception desk at evening lectures and other similar events.
Marine Science Day Volunteer: Help with our annual open house. Assist with children's activities, reception/welcome booth, costume contest, set-ups and various other tasks.