Volunteers fill a variety of roles to support the day-to-day operations of the museum and gardens. Read on to find out about open volunteer opportunities.
Docents: Docents guide patrons through the galleries and gardens. They work as a team and learn through self-study and mentoring about Japanese culture and museum exhibits from Morikami staff. Attendance at monthly meetings as well as the ability to stand for long periods and walk the gardens are required.
Now Recruiting Docents!
We are actively seeking new docent educators for our year-round docent volunteer program. Docents help educate the public about the history and wonders of Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens.
What is a Docent? A docent is a knowledgeable guide who leads visitors throughout Morikami, providing historical background about the museum and gardens, as well as answering questions about the museum and delivering commentary on the exhibitions and gardens.
Worried you don’t know enough about Japanese culture, art and gardens? Not a problem! Docents complete approximately 45 hours of training that consists of education sessions about our exhibitions and gardens (in person and online), and all docents-in-training shadow current docents during their weekly tours. Docents meet once a month on Mondays.
- A love of Japanese art and culture and a strong interest in Morikami Museum & Japanese Gardens
- Excellent interpersonal skills, including the ability to effectively communicate with small and large groups of varying ages and backgrounds
- Desire to work with others as part of a team
- Reliability, enthusiasm and commitment
- Ability to commit to one day a week (Tuesday-Friday; in addition to monthly Monday docent meetings)
- Ongoing participation in “The Way of the Docent” program including studies in local history, Japanese tea ceremony, gardens, and Morikami’s changing gallery exhibits
- Access to Museum galleries and gardens
- 20% Discount on Museum store, 30% during Members Appreciation Weekends
- 10% Discount at the Cornell Café
- Discount on museum memberships purchased at the Dual level or higher
If you are interested in exploring this fulfilling opportunity, contact Diane Valentini, at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 561-233-1331.
Other Available Positions:
- Bonsai: Help preserve and protect our bonsai collection. This position requires standing for long periods of time and is outdoors year round. Experience with Bonsai is preferred. This shift is every Friday morning from 8am to 12pm.
- Library: Our library is “reference only” meaning materials are to be used on site, nothing may be checked out. It is also staffed entirely by volunteers. They help patrons find materials and return them to the shelves after use. You must be knowledgeable of the various library shelf sections to guide or recommend patrons to the information they are seeking. Also, be able to answer general museum questions.
- Marketing/Surveys: You work with our Marketing Manager doing surveys of the public on a weekly basis and for select special events. You must be very self-motivated, outgoing, and willing to approach our patrons of all ages and backgrounds. This position reports to the Director of Marketing and Events.
- Membership Desk Assistant: Works from 11am-3pm, Saturday. You will work with our weekend membership representative to take pictures and assist. You need to be able to learn our computer database to make member cards, sell memberships and give the membership representatives breaks. This position reports to the Manager of Membership and Development.
- Museum Store: You will be assisting customers in the store; re-arranging and re-stocking items; wrapping and bagging items bought by visitors. You will learn about items available in the store. The ability to bend and retrieve items from cabinets below displayed items and extended periods of standing are necessary. You will not be handling the cash register or money. This position reports to the Museum Store Manager. Shift currently available is Saturday 1:30pm to 5pm.
- Museum Greeter: You provide a warm and friendly welcome to patrons of the museum; distribute the Visitor’s Guide and explain what they will encounter during their visit, and assist in informing the public about museum policies. (Docent led tours are given to all volunteers after each exhibit change to help familiarize you with the new exhibit.) Some greeters will be asked to sell fish food to visitors so that they may feed Koi in the garden lakes and pond.
- Office: Assist staff members with answering phones, filing, mailing, assembling packets, and data entry. Basic computer skills are necessary. Shifts are available Tuesday through Friday between 10am and 5pm for a minimum of three and a half hours.
- Yamato-kan Greeter: The greeters welcome visitors to the Yamato-kan, located in the garden, it houses our “Japan through the Eyes of a Child” exhibit. This is a hands-on exhibit that provides the history of the Yamato Colony and George Morikami. You will welcome guests and school groups and explain what they will see there, as well as provide general information about museum exhibits and activities. Also, sell fish food to visitors so they may feed Koi fish in the garden lakes and pond.