Open 9 am - 5 pm
A guest engagement volunteer engages with a family including a little girl who is interested in the long-nosed gar in the habitat they've stopped at.

What do Aquarium Ambassadors do?

A Shedd volunteer engages with guests to point out penguin behaviors in Polar Play Zone.

Exhibit Ambassador

Promote self-discovery in various exhibits, engaging guests with relevant animal information and providing great customer service for audiences of various backgrounds.

Volunteer talks to children at Stingray Touch.

Touch Experience Ambassador

Facilitate animal contact at the aquarium’s live-animal touch pools while providing a safe environment for guests. These volunteers encourage guests to explore live animals such as sea stars through interactive engagements.

A volunteer leads a group of children through an activity during Shedd's Spooky Seas Overnight event.

Inquiry and Exploration Ambassador

Facilitate hands-on engagements in a variety of settings including aquarium classroom labs, exhibits and off-site locations. These volunteers engage primarily with school groups and chaperones but may also interact with other aquarium guests during operating hours and special events. Ages 18+ only. Greatest need is Tuesday through Friday.

Training and onboarding

Successful applicants who complete the general onboarding process will receive additional specialized training for the Ambassador role of their choice. Additional Ambassador roles can be acquired upon completion of initial commitment. See our "FAQs" for the general volunteer onboarding process.

Trainings are offered throughout the year and vary based on Ambassador role. They are a combination of in-person and online work.

What are the benefits of being a Shedd volunteer?

  • Admission to the aquarium and other cultural institutions
  • The chance to see how Shedd works behind the scenes
  • Gift shop and café discounts and discounted parking while volunteering
  • Helping to spark compassion, curiosity and conservation for the aquatic animal world
  • Meeting a diverse group of staff members, volunteers and guests who share a passion for aquatic life