Staff members of the various departments will directly contact and interview prospective volunteers. We regret that there may not be opportunities for all qualified candidates.
Please review the following assignment descriptions to understand the requirements of each department and decide which ones best match your interests and abilities. You must indicate your preferred department assignments in the online application form.
Note: The Volunteer Organization does not accept applications from high school or college students. Tristate-area high school students are eligible to apply for a paid internship. Several internships are offered for college and graduate students.
Department Assignments: Main Building
Clerical Volunteers work alone or in groups, performing a variety of duties in departments throughout the Museum, such as Concerts & Lectures, Merchandising, and Education. They are needed for weekday, evening, and weekend positions, year-round. The time commitment varies, depending on the demands of the particular department and position (a typical shift is four to five hours a week on a year-round basis).
Education Programs Volunteers
These volunteers work with a wide variety of youth and adult audiences. They assist teaching staff in regularly scheduled programming by welcoming visitors, distributing materials, and helping with wayfinding. They may also be asked to distribute and collect surveys from program participants to assist the Education Department in learning more about visitors and their experiences. Education Programs Volunteers must enjoy and feel comfortable working with the public.
Japanese Reading Room Volunteers
These volunteers staff the George Nakashima–designed anteroom to the Japanese galleries. Duties include greeting visitors and organizing the library cart of books on Japanese arts, culture, and history, as well as the videos and iPads relating to exhibitions. Prior knowledge of Japanese art, culture, and language is not required. Volunteers work either one half-day every other week, year-round, on an assigned shift on a specified day, or substitute for regular volunteers as needed (substitutes must be available as many days of the week as possible). Volunteers must be familiar with the Museum's collections, particularly the current exhibitions and where they are located.
Opportunities to volunteer in the Museum's libraries occur infrequently. When needed, volunteers primarily serve in Thomas J. Watson Library and Nolen Library in the Ruth and Harold D. Uris Center for Education. Watson Library Volunteers assist behind the scenes in every aspect of the library, including helping to acquire and conserve material, and updating and managing information files. They work one half-day per week, year-round. Nolen Library Volunteers assist with resource management and help users with reference and teacher resource materials. Weekday Nolen Volunteers work at least one half-day per week, year-round. Weekend Nolen Volunteers work a minimum of one day every three weeks. Library or teaching experience is preferred for Nolen Library Volunteers.
These volunteers help with check-in and provide any additional assistance and information to our Members during exhibition previews and in the Balcony and Patrons Lounges. They work one four-hour shift each week, year-round, either during the week or on weekends. Volunteers in this role must have excellent communication and customer-service skills. Computer proficiency is required, and familiarity with a fund-raising database is preferred.
These volunteers typically work alone, performing research and scholarly duties in departments throughout the Museum, such as The American Wing, Conservation and Scientific Research, and Education. They are needed for weekday, evening, and weekend positions, year-round. The time commitment varies, depending on the demands of the particular department and position (a typical shift is four to five hours a week on a year-round basis).
Survey Volunteers are the backbone of the Museum's visitor-research efforts. They help the Museum gather visitor feedback by conducting surveys and interviews. Survey Volunteers do not have fixed weekly shifts; they work for two to three hours periodically, when surveys are scheduled. Candidates must have a flexible schedule, including availability on weekdays and weekends. No previous survey experience is necessary, as training will be provided, but strong interpersonal skills and the ability to successfully interact with Museum visitors are required.
Visitor Services Volunteers
These volunteers serve at the Information Desks or in Group Services. Information Desk Volunteers serve as "Met ambassadors" at Information Desks throughout the Museum, offering assistance and recommendations to visitors. Clear and friendly communication skills are a basic requirement. Volunteers must enjoy providing accurate directions to visitors from every background, and must acquire a thorough knowledge of the Museum. Computer skills, especially Internet-search skills, are required. Multilingual candidates are preferred. Information Desk Volunteers serve one half-day a week, year-round, during weekdays, evenings, or weekends. Friday evening, Saturday evening, and weekend assignments are more often available. Group Services Volunteers serve in Carson Family Hall to offer support to, and facilitate the processing of, K–12 students visiting the Museum for group tours. Candidates with a teaching background are preferred. Group Services Volunteers serve one half-day a week during the school year.
Department Assignments: The Cloisters Museum and Gardens
Sights & Scents Program
Sights & Scents Volunteers assist the Museum staff who teach this program for visitors with dementia and their care partners. It occurs once a month on Wednesday, Saturday, or Sunday. Volunteers arrive one hour before the program, greet visitors, accompany those in wheelchairs who require escort through non-public areas, make and distribute name tags, distribute sketching material during the program, help carry folding stools between galleries, engage with visitors before and during the program, and assist visitors in leaving the Museum. Experience engaging with the elderly or people with dementia is desired.
Garden Volunteers assist horticultural staff at The Cloisters with garden maintenance, including weeding, deadheading, and sweeping paths. These volunteers are required to work half days (three hours) or full days (five hours), with Monday availability preferred.
Only those who submit an online application will be considered for placement. The application requires a personal statement expressing why you wish to volunteer at the Metropolitan Museum, and what interests, skills, and experiences you would bring to the position (maximum 250 words).
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and remain on file for two years. We regret that there may not be opportunities for all qualified candidates.