Sea Center Opportunities

Sea Center volunteers are a community of people comprised of all ages, backgrounds, and professional and student expertise. If you have a passion for people, your community, and the conservation and stewardship of Santa Barbara’s local coastal waters and watersheds, then the Sea Center wants you!

All of our volunteers begin as Exhibit Interpreter Volunteers, an entry-level position. Once volunteers complete the minimum commitment of 4 months and 48 hours of service, they have the option to apply for one of our Advanced Volunteer Opportunities.

Exhibit Interpreter Volunteer

Share your passion for the natural world by providing engaging and educational experiences for Sea Center visitors. Perform hands-on demonstrations and give live animal presentations at our iconic Shark Cove, Intertidal Wonders, and Wet Deck exhibits. The Sea Center offers orientations throughout the year to those looking to gain valuable experience translating scientific terminology and information to aquarium visitors.

Requirements:

1. Complete Volunteer Application
2. Participate in an interview process
3. Volunteer with a parent or guardian if under the age of 14
4. All applicants 18 years or older must pass a background check
5. Be able to commit to one shift per week for a minimum of 4 months
6. If selected, attend the Sea Crew Orientation 
7. Pay $25 program fee which covers the cost of the volunteer uniform

Advanced Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteers that have gone through the Sea Crew Orientation and completed the minimum commitment period of 4 months and 48 hours of service have the prospect of transitioning into the following opportunities at the Sea Center. 

Assist the Sea Center’s aquarist team in husbandry responsibilities, including food preparation and feeding the aquarium’s marine life, as well as maintaining the exhibits.

Requirements:

  1. Fulfill 48 hours of volunteering as an Exhibit Interpreter Volunteer
  2. Contact the Volunteer Manager for an application
  3. Must be over the age of 14
  4. Be able to commit to one shift per week for a minimum 48 hours
  5. Participate in an interview process
  6. If selected, attend mandatory onsite training with the aquarist team

Foster a sense of stewardship in the next generation of marine scientists. Help our Mighty Sea Squirts investigate and explore Santa Barbara’s unique marine environment during the spring, summer, and winter camp seasons.

Requirements:

  1. Complete 48 hours of volunteering as an Exhibit Interpreter Volunteer
  2. Contact the Volunteer Manager for an application
  3. Participate in an interview process
  4. Volunteer applicants must be 14 years of age and older
  5. Be able to commit to one shift per week over the camp season
  6. If selected, attend a mandatory training session.

Share the diversity of Santa Barbara’s marine mammal species with visitors at our portable marine mammal exhibit. Explore the similarities and differences between land and aquatic mammals using collections from the museum’s Collections and Research department.

Requirements:

  1. Complete 48 hours of volunteering as an Exhibit Interpreter Volunteer
  2. Be able to commit to one shift per week over a 2 month period
  3. Participate in training sessions and shadow shifts

Inspire a thirst for discovery of the natural world through outreach events and interactions with school groups that visit the Sea Center.

Requirements:

  1. Complete 48 hours of volunteering as an Exhibit Interpreter Volunteer
  2. Contact the Volunteer Manager for an application
  3. Participate in an interview process
  4. Volunteer applicants must be 14 years of age and older
  5. Commit to one shift per week throughout the school year (9:45 AM-12:45 PM, Monday-Friday).
  6. If selected, attend a mandatory training session

Get sandy and sun-kissed as you help clean up East Beach. Participate in monthly beach cleanups and record your findings along the way.

Requirements:

  1. Complete the Sea Crew Orientation
  2. Applicants must be Adults (18 or older) or participate as Adult-Youth teams
  3. Commit to three beach cleanups per year

Harness your wonder and awe of the ocean by discovering the diversity of life at the bottom of the food chain. Share your findings and the ecological importance of these creatures with Sea Center visitors.

Requirements:

  1. Complete 48 hours of volunteering as an Exhibit Interpreter Volunteer
  2. Commit to one Plankton Monitoring shift per week
  3. Participate in training sessions and shadow shifts

Greet Sea Center guests before they enter the exhibit hall and share information about all the exciting programs and activities scheduled throughout the day.

Requirements:

  1. Complete the Sea Crew Orientation
  2. Be able to commit to one shift per week

Questions about volunteering at the Sea Center? Contact Shalina Peterson at 805-962-2526 ext. 104 or speterson@sbnature2.org.