Share your Passion by Becoming a Volunteer

Thank you for considering volunteering at The Bakken Museum. The museum inspires discovery and creativity in thousands of people each year. This could not be done without the support of numerous volunteers who generously provide their time and resources.

The Bakken Museum offers volunteer opportunities for people of all ages, with or without a science background. The museum provides flexible scheduling (days, evenings, weekends), a friendly staff and an excellent working environment. 

Opportunities

Work as an exhibits volunteer is project oriented and may, therefore, not always be available.

Time Commitment: 8 hours per week
Position Summary: Assists in development and production of new exhibits at The Bakken Museum.

Responsibilities:

  • Assist with content research, draft exhibit text, and procure objects and other exhibit resources.
  • Conduct image research, acquisition, and licensing.
  • Participate as a team member to investigate potential topics for exhibits and communicate research findings to team.
  • Assist with testing exhibit ideas and prototyping with the public.
  • Maintain high standards of accuracy and comprehensiveness in all research and management tasks.
  • Comply with all policies and procedures of The Bakken Museum.

Qualifications:

  • Familiarity with or interest in communicating ideas to the public.
  • Knowledge of or strong interest in history, science, engineering, and/or medicine.
  • Experience using MS Office.
  • Ability to conduct in-depth research using library and internet resources.
  • Ability to clearly communicate findings in written form.
  • Ability to act independently and to seek consultation when needed.
  • Ability to work as a team member.

Additional Skills:
Occasionally projects arise requiring specialized skills in graphic design, multimedia production, evaluation, and building prototypes or other exhibit components. These skills are desired but not required to volunteer with exhibits.

Training: Training will be provided by the exhibit developer.
Supervision: Julie Govert, Exhibit Developer, 612-926-3878, ext. 239
Scheduling: Flexible, Monday-Friday

Work as a collections volunteer is project oriented and may, therefore, not always be available.
Time Commitment: 4 hours per week
Position Summary: Assists in the care and management of the collections, including research related to The Bakken’s historical collections of artifacts and books.

Responsibilities:

  • Assist with the management, organization, and conservation of artifact, library, and/or art collections and related materials.
  • Conduct historical research related to Bakken artifacts and books.
  • Communicate research findings to the curator and other team members.
  • Assist with presentation of collections at public events.
  • Maintain high standards of accuracy and comprehensiveness in all research and management tasks.
  • Comply with all policies and procedures of The Bakken Museum.

Qualifications

  • Familiarity with or interest in electrical apparatuses and electronic medical devices.
  • Knowledge of or interest in history and historical research methods.
  • Knowledge of library and archival practices is preferred for special projects.
  • Ability to act independently and to seek consultation when needed.
  • Ability to work as a team member.
  • Ability to clearly communicate findings in written form.

Training: Training will be provided by the curator.
Supervision: Adrian Fischer, Curator of Instruments, 612-926-3878, ext. 201
Scheduling: Flexible, Tuesdays through Thursdays.

Benefits

  • Contribute to our knowledge and assist in the preservation of The Bakken’s extraordinary collections.
  • Assist in developing The Bakken’s collections, presenting them to the public, and educating future researchers.
  • Sense of fulfillment for providing a needed service for present-day and future generations of children, families and adults interested in learning.

The Bakken Museum sits on nearly 3 beautiful acres of property on the west side of Lake Calhoun. Our unique urban property includes some major surprises for garden enthusiasts, including prairie and wetland restoration areas, a medicinal plant garden, organic vegetable gardens and much more.

Obviously, there is much to be done year round to maintain and enhance our gardens and grounds. We have an informal group of volunteer gardeners who meet regularly on Thursday evenings to do whatever needs doing. Additionally, we work with individuals and groups numbering up to 50 to accomplish projects year round.

Your schedule will be flexible, and your work will be truly appreciated by the thousands who visit us each year.

Position Duties and Responsibilities

  • Completes training protocol provided by The Bakken Museum. Responsible for supporting and implementing on-site programs including setting-up, cleaning-up, and delivering guided exhibit tours to visitors, including youth groups, adult groups, and senior groups. (Volunteers may choose to “specialize” in delivering tours to specific populations, ie youth or adults).
  • Ensures programs are consistent with The Bakken’s mission, guiding principles, strategic focus and educational philosophy.
  • Adheres to organizational policies, rules, regulations and procedures.
  • Responds appropriately to safety and behavior issues, including filling out accident reports when necessary.
  • Maintains a safe working environment for visitors, staff, and volunteers.
  • Participates in ongoing professional development as often as possible.
  • Promotes Bakken programs with museum visitors and program participants.

Organization Relationships and Contracts

  • Reports to the appropriate Programs Manager or Coordinator as assigned. 
  • Works closely with all education staff.
  • Works with other Bakken staff as appropriate for assigned responsibilities.
  • Develops and maintains good relations with other staff members and volunteers.
  • Is helpful, friendly, and professional towards students, chaperones, teachers and visitors.

Experience and Qualification

Interest in science, technology, engineering, and math education.

  • Excellent public interaction skills, especially with youth.
  • Excellent communication skills (written and especially verbal) essential.
  • Ability to work evenings and weekends requested.
  • Reliable transportation.

Time Commitment

Volunteer Tour Guide (for Field Trips, Grades K-12)

Tuesdays-Fridays

9:15AM-2:30PM

Minimum of 8 hours/month = 2-4 hour days/month

Minimum of 4 hours/week is preferred

Volunteer Tour Guide (for other youth groups and adult/senior groups)

School year weekdays – 2:00-5:00PM, Thursdays 2:00-8:00PM

Summer weekdays 10:45AM-2:30PM

Saturdays - 10:45AM-2:30PM

Minimum of 4 hours/month is requested

Volunteer Testimonials

"I have been with the Bakken from 8 years old to 18 years old. Even when I was getting older, the Bakken was still fun and exciting for me to visit and volunteer!”. — Isabel Johnson

The Bakken Museum is Minneapolis' best-kept-secret for STEM education of all ages. I enjoy everyday as a volunteer at The Bakken because of the fun and excitement guests have learning about science, technology, and wellness. With exhibits that are both beautiful and interactive, it's easy to pass on my knowledge and passion as a biomedical research professional!" — Travis Navarro

Benefits to Volunteering

As a volunteer, you can have the unique chance to:

  • Contribute to our knowledge and assist in the preservation of The Bakken’s extraordinary collections.
  • Contribute to The Bakken’s temporary and permanent exhibits.
  • Explore intriguing ideas and learn techniques for communicating and educating the public.
  • Feel a sense of fulfillment for providing a needed service for present-day and future generations of children, families and adults interested in learning.

Submission Form

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