behind the scenes iconEnvironmental Operations

Join our Environmental Operations Team and be part of our Facilities Maintenance Department! Environmental Operations oversees the custodial needs of Clearwater Marine Aquarium.  As an E/O Volunteer, you will be making a huge difference for our guests and the animals by performing routine maintenance around the aquarium.

Volunteer Responsibilities Include:

  • Maintain a clean appearance to glass/acrylic fixtures and aquariums.
  • Keeping the floors clear of debris and water.
  • Taking out trash when needed.
  • Sanitize touchpoints.
  • Stocking guest areas.
  • Responding to requests from any department.
  • Specialized tasks as needed.
  • Inventory management.
  • Ability to positively communicate with guests, staff and other volunteers.

Yes, we won’t lie — it can be a dirty job. But, believe it or not, it is very rewarding and pretty fun!

The E/O volunteer position is a weekly reoccurring shift, same day and time each week. Shifts are 5 hours long, with the choice of a morning or afternoon and are available 7 days a week.


hospitality iconGuest Experience

Guest Experience volunteers are ambassadors to CMA, providing first impressions and enhancing the visitor experience! Volunteers in the Guest Experience department should possess a positive, outgoing personality, enjoy interacting with people, and be excited about the Aquarium’s mission.

Guest Experience volunteers engage CMA guests and attend to their needs. Tasks include: greeting guests in the ticketing line, facilitating their entry into CMA, manning the glitter tattoo station, and roaming throughout the building engaging guests about our work and mission. Volunteers must be comfortable with standing and walking on cement, going up and down stairs, and moving quickly from one task to another.

The Guest Experience volunteer position requires a minimum 4-month commitment to a weekly reoccurring shift, same day and time each week. Shifts in this department are 4 hours long, AM and PM volunteer shifts are available in this department 7 days a week; new volunteers are assigned their weekly shift based on their availability and our current shift openings.


marine mammals fluke iconMarine Mammals

In the Mammals Division, some of your responsibilities as a volunteer may include the following:

  • Learning and assisting in food preparation – a large majority of the day is spent sorting and inspecting fish, processing fish, and washing dishes.
  • Conducting behavioral observations, maintaining behavioral logs – records of feeding and observation sessions are maintained daily.
  • Participating in the daily maintenance of animal exhibits – more cleaning!
  • Narrating presentations for visitors of the aquarium
  • Interacting with encounter participants and guests of the aquarium

The Marine Mammal volunteer program is tailored to meet your personal abilities, experience level, and educational background. Marine Mammal volunteers should have no expectation of animal contact / handling.

The Marine Mammal volunteer position requires a minimum 4 month commitment to a weekly reoccurring shift, same day and time each week. Shifts in this department are 5 hours, several shift times are available each day and volunteers are needed 7 days a week; new volunteers are assigned their weekly shift based on their availability and our current shift openings.


stranding team boat iconRescue Team

The CMA Rescue Team has volunteer positions available in both Stranding Administration and Stranding Rescue Response.

Stranding Administrative Volunteer:
Support the mission of the Clearwater Marine Aquarium’s and the work of the Rescue Department through attending, teaching, and developing department trainings as assigned, representing the aquarium at outreach events, and promoting stewardship of the marine environment. Administrative volunteers will assist with day-to-day department functions including equipment management, monitoring the emergency Rescue Response Hotline, responding to distressed and injured marine life, and data entry.

Rescue Response Volunteer:

  • Obtain knowledge of rescue policies, Standard Operating Procedures, and day-to-day functions.
  • Provide exceptional guest and public interaction for all stranding-related responses.
  • Learn and perform behavioral observations on resident animals in conjuncture with Marine Mammal Department.
  • Learn diet preparation and habitat maintenance of resident animals in conjuncture with Marine Mammal Department.
  • Assist with maintenance of equipment through inspection and inventory.
  • Assist with public outreach to promote conservation within the community.
  • Assist the Rescue Team in response to stranding events when contacted.
  • Assist other Animal Care departments as needed and requested by other departments.
  • Learn and be able to present the Stranding Demonstration.
  • Assist with habitat maintenance.

*For Rescue Response, a swim test is required within 90 days.

Our Rescue Team volunteers are on a flexible schedule with 4 hour minimum monthly commitment to remain active members of the Rescue Team.


Frequently Asked Questions

CMA Blog

Updated Jul 8, 2019 | Posted May 22, 2017
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