Volunteer

Volunteer

The History Center is looking for energetic and committed volunteers to help create a great experience for visitors or provide much needed behind-the-scenes support. By contributing your time you can learn new skills, work with motivated people who share common interests, and help visitors of all ages connect with the past. If you have an interest in history and want to share your enthusiasm and talents, we encourage you to apply to become a volunteer.

Do you have a passion for history? Do you want to learn more about the Tampa Bay region, and share your knowledge and enthusiasm with others? If so, apply to become a docent at the History Center. Docents help fulfill the museum’s educational mission by leading tours for groups of children and adults. No previous history knowledge or education is required. The only prerequisites are a willingness to learn, ability to interact comfortably with groups of visitors, and availability one day per week. The History Center provides extensive training and on-going learning opportunities. New docent training takes place annually in September; a limited number of openings are available. Docents must be able to commit to at least nine months of service, from Sept. to June, for a minimum of 8 hours per month.
Education volunteers assist museum staff with facilitating hands-on programs for a variety of audiences, such as preschoolers, K-12 students, adults and families. Programs include Scout workshops and tours, preschool class programs, children’s camps, and public events. Volunteers must be comfortable engaging people of all ages, from preschoolers to seniors. Experience and interest in facilitating arts and crafts and other hands-on activities is a plus. Schedule is flexible; volunteers work on an as-needed basis.
Teens volunteers (ages 15-17) work alongside museum staff, assisting with summer camps and special events; serving as floor hosts in the galleries; and helping with children’s craft activities during public programs. Volunteering at the History Center provides students with a unique opportunity to learn what happens “behind-the-scenes” at a museum, make new friends, and to gain valuable experience in a work setting. Teen volunteers should be self-motivated, energetic and upbeat. Experience working with younger children is a plus.
Volunteers in the TBHC collections department have the opportunity to assist with the inventory, processing, and cataloging of historical records and artifacts in a “hands on” work environment.  Common tasks include database entry, basic photography, organizing records, research and writing, creation of finding aids, and other specialized duties.  Collections volunteers come from a variety of disciplines including history, anthropology, archaeology, women’s studies, library sciences, American studies and more.  Training is provided and previous archival or library experience is helpful but not required.  We accept new volunteers three times a year (January, May, & September) and volunteers must be available at least one day per week (Monday – Friday) from 10am–1pm or 1-4pm.  There are a limited number of college internships available which are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.  For more information, contact Malerie Dorman, Collections Manager, at mdorman@tampabayhistorycenter.org or at 813-228-0097 ext. 8978.

Special Project Opportunities

There are a number of ongoing specialized projects in the TBHC collections department.  Current needs include those with an interest or experience in:

  • Architecture for processing of Tampa area historical blueprints
  • Cartography for exhibit development and general research
  • Cigar Culture for exhibit development and general research
  • Creative Writing for creation of blog content
  • Economics/Business for processing historical records such as ledgers
  • Editing/Reading for organizing, abstracting, transcribing and indexing old documents
  • Fashion for working with historical textiles including a large Native American collection
  • Florida Studies for research on a developing exhibit
  • Gardening for processing of historical garden club records
  • Literature for processing books and other media
  • Logistics for collections inventory and storage overhaul
  • Native American Life for historical research and object processing
  • Photography for updating images of old records and processing of Cirkut negatives
  • Research for solving identification mysteries
  • Technical Writing for updating descriptions of old records

REQUIREMENTS

To join our volunteer team, we ask that you meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 15 years of age.
  • Submit a volunteer application.
  • Complete an interview and orientation.
  • Pay a one-time enrollment fee of $40, which covers a mandatory criminal background screening.

After joining the team, volunteers must participate in required training sessions, which vary by department. Once training is completed, volunteers must serve at least 6 hours per month to maintain active status.

BENEFITS

In addition to the personal and social rewards of volunteering, History Center volunteers enjoy numerous benefits including free parking while volunteering, on-going learning opportunities, appreciation events and program discounts.

HOW TO APPLY

Fill out the volunteer application on the link below. After you submit your application, a TBHC staff member will contact you to arrange for an interview. For more information, contact Julie Matus, Curator of Education, at matus@tampabayhistorycenter.org or 813-675-8981.

Volunteer Application