OUR CULTURE

Midway volunteers are essential to the everyday operations of the museum and are often the highlight of the ship experience for our visitors!  Share in the passion of having fun, while building a greater sense of community through service.

Volunteer Opportunities

We welcome volunteers from all walks of life to join Midway’s Team!

Scroll down to review our current volunteer opportunities from Safety to Ship Restoration; there is something for everyone.

Midway volunteers must be at least 18 years of age, willing to participate with a regular commitment for a minimum of four months and have a healthy team spirit attitude!

Unless you have a group of 10 or more for a one-day project, we are looking for at least a six-month time commitment from our regular volunteers.

HEAR FROM OUR VOLUNTEERS

Current Volunteer Opportunities

Position Summary

  • Help ensure the safety and enjoyment of 1.4 million guests from all around the world as they explore Midway
  • Patrol all areas of the ship to serve guest safety needs throughout Midway, as well as at special events and military ceremonies
  • Provide basic first aid for guests and Midway staff (training provided)
  • Respond to all emergency situations, medical or other
  • Monitor the entrance and all exits helping guests – from toddlers to veterans – enter and leave Midway safely
  • Monitor the loading zone and parking areas ensuring the safety of our guests on and around Navy Pier

Minimum Requirements

All Safety Volunteers are required to be familiar with the Safety Team Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and Emergency Action Plan, including the locations of the first aid kits and AEDs.

  • Must be 18 years of age or older and computer literate
  • Physically fit; able to climb up and down the ship’s ladders & walk and stand for extended periods of time
  • Able to commit 20 hours per month (flexible schedule)
  • Personal traits of timeliness, reliability, customer service, and diplomacy
  • Ability to remain calm in an emergency
  • Prior experience in customer service, military, nursing, Firefighting, EMT, paramedic, law enforcement is helpful but not required

Duties & Commitment 

A commitment of 20 or more hours per month is required. Safety volunteer shifts can be any day of the week. Typical shifts are 5 hours: 8:30 am – 1:30 pm – or – 12:30 – 5:30 pm. Safety team members are assigned a post at the start of the shift and are expected to assist guests and patrol for potential hazards and respond, as trained, to emergency situations.

Position Summary

This position provides the opportunity for airplane buffs to help restore aircraft stricken from service to full static (non-flying) status, as well as in the maintenance of those restored aircraft exhibits onboard the Midway Museum. Immense pride is associated with being a member of a team that brings an aircraft from virtual scrap condition to a full-fledged museum quality static exhibit. It is one of the most rewarding experiences a volunteer can encounter.

Minimum Requirements

No prior experience is necessary. Team membership is open to all who have the desire and are capable, but especially to experienced aircraft metal workers, painters, bodyworkers and novices with a mechanical aptitude. The work requires climbing on stands, ladders and aircraft as well as lifting up to 20 pounds. Training Provided. All volunteers must complete an initial orientation with the Airwing Department.

Duties & Commitment

A commitment of at least 10 hours per month is desired to start and stay current. Initially all volunteer will start on the ship. Work hours are 8:00 am – 2:00 pm. Normal activities aboard Midway are performed Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, with other days available upon approval. Restoration projects in Hangar 805 are performed Tuesday and Thursday through Sunday.

Projects include restoring and maintaining a variety of historic, military aircraft: washing aircraft, corrosion control and preservation, painting, and maintenance support on board Midway. Those with prior metalworking skills may have opportunities at North Island in the Airwing restoration hangar.

Position Summary

We are looking for volunteers who enjoy people and enjoy crafts. Previous knot-tying or macramé experience is preferred, but we are willing to train. Midway has a very popular exhibit where volunteers demonstrate rudimentary knot tying skills. They also make and give knotted items, such as, Turks-head bracelets, lanyards, and monkey fists for a suggested donation that supports our scholarship program. The total donations collected for the year 2015 was more than $100,000 from more than 17,000 knotted items. The donations go to the Midway’s Education Scholarships.

Minimum Requirements

Strong interpersonal skills. Ability to learn and demonstrate knot tying and a basic understanding of the museum’s layout and history.

Commitment

10 hours per month. Flexible shifts between 10 am – 5 pm, Saturday, Sunday and holidays.

Position Summary

This opportunity involves World War II veterans who share personal stories with Midway guests. Midway visitors are eager to meet veterans with first-hand experience.

Duties & Commitment

Conversational/freestyle discussion; additional visual aids may be used by the guest speaker to enhance their personal stories. Volunteers are asked to participate for one or more 2-hour shifts per month on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays or Sundays.

Position Summary

Assist youth program team to host groups during evenings or early am hours. This position is meant to provide educational support rather than caregiving.

Minimum Requirements

Prospective volunteers must be friendly, articulate, have the ability to climb ship’s ladders, and be at least 18 years of age. Criminal history security check is required.

Training Provided. Museum tour and on-the-job training is provided to become familiar with the ship and its history.

Duties & Commitment

Supervise groups and help facilitate activities, such as tours and presentations. At least one shift per month. Evening shifts are 3 – 11 pm, Morning 6 – 10 am, or full overnight. There are 45 events per year.

Position Summary

Revitalizing selected areas of the Midway and transforming compartments and work spaces to authentic representations of “the way life was” aboard Midway. Each area is revitalized by the museum’s restoration volunteer force, beginning with dirty clean-ups and ending in authentic area restorations and realistic reproductions.

Minimum Requirements

Prospective volunteers must be physically fit, able to climb ladders and work in confined spaces. A significant number of volunteers from a variety of trade backgrounds are needed, including metalsmiths, welders, electricians, plumbers, painters, carpenters and handy persons – professionals and novices alike. Trade experience is desired but not mandatory. Navy personnel, active or retired are invited to participate. Volunteers must be able to lift 20 lbs., climb ship’s ladders, climb short step ladders, and be able to get down on their knees and get back up without assistance. Safety shoes are recommended.

Training Provided. All Ship Restoration volunteers must complete an initial orientation which is overseen by the Engineering Department. Once a volunteer has been teamed with a mentor or existing volunteer, a mutually agreeable work schedule is arranged.

Duties & Commitment

Most work projects involve cleaning and/or painting. The majority of Ship Restoration team members work mornings on Tuesday, Thursday, or Saturday between the hours of 7 am and 2 pm. Each volunteer is asked to work a minimum of 4 hours per week, or 20 hours per month, and all volunteers work in pairs or groups, never alone, for the safety of the entire department.

Position Summary

This position interfaces with the public and provides a personal touch to Midway’s self-guided audio tour of the museum. Being a docent is probably one of the most rewarding experiences a volunteer can encounter as you witness positive reactions of visitors to informative and personal presentations.

Minimum Requirements

Strong interpersonal skills with a preferred background in public speaking and/or education and with the ability to communicate information clearly and concisely are important qualifications for this position. Personal traits of timeliness, reliability and diplomacy are expected. Prior military service is a plus, but not essential. Prospective volunteers must be at least 18 years of age, able to climb ship’s ladders and stand/walk for periods of up to 4 hours.

Training Provided. A 7-week, 40 plus-hour training curriculum (6 hours each session), using a standardized outline covering all aspects of ship familiarization, exhibits, history and interpersonal skills. After completing classroom study, 20 hours of “on the job” training with a seasoned docent is required before successfully completing a walk-through with a docent leader.

Duties & Commitment

As a docent graduate, you will give brief talks to groups at various locations throughout the ship. All activities are under the direction of the Chief Docent and daily operations are delegated to a Docent of the Watch who makes various daily shift assignments.

After completion of the above requirements and receiving a “yellow hat,” a minimum of 20 hours per month is required. Scheduling is flexible with shifts available 7 days a week; shifts are 4 hours each in the am or pm with occasional frequent opportunities to assist at private evening events.

Project Summary

Groups of 10-20 from military, corporate, social, educational and other organizations are invited to participate for a one-day project onboard. These projects will give your team the opportunity to spend time aboard; learn about the history of Midway; and help keep our ship clean for the museum guests coming from all over the world. Join in the spirit of service to inspire future generations.

Commitment

Group Projects are generally 3-4 hours, typically mornings. Advanced arrangements required. Participants may tour museum at their own pace following the project. For more information, contact our Volunteer Department at (619) 398-8289 or groups@midway.org.

Position Summary

Writing for magazine archiving project. Volunteers are needed to summarize articles on Naval and Marine history. The United States Naval Institute and the USS Midway Museum have a joint project to provide a digitized index to the USNI’s Proceedings magazine, which has been published since 1874. The goal of the project is to provide summaries of each of the main articles from more than 1,300 issues in an internet accessible database.

Minimum Requirements

Must have typing skills, be computer literate, and have interest in naval history, research, reading, and writing.

Duties & Commitment

A minimum of ten (10) hours per month for a minimum of four (4) consecutive months is required. There is flexibility to work from home or in the Midway library, which is accessible only via the ship’s ladders.

Position Summary

Have the opportunity to work alongside like-minded peers in Midway’s Leadership Program in partnership with the Travis Manion Foundation. This program is primarily for at-risk, high school-age students and occurs one Saturday each month. A group of 25 – 30 high school students meet, facilitated by veterans and families of the fallen to learn the core skills and values of becoming a leader. This is not a military recruiting tool. It is an opportunity to teach our next generation that they have the ability and opportunity to become leaders in their community right now.

Minimum Requirements

  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • Strong interpersonal skills required
  • Must have former military service and be willing to share their personal story
  • Must complete a background check

Duties & Commitment 

Mentors will help facilitate team building and leadership exercises in partnership with the Travis Manion Foundation Leadership Academy.

Must be available Saturdays, 4-5 times per year. Following the Saturday seminar, the Travis Manion Foundation will organize a service project for students to exercise their character and leadership, and to give back in honor of our nation’s fallen heroes.

Position Summary

here is a unique opportunity to assist teachers in preparing students for U.S. Citizenship and English as a Second Language!

  • Use tutoring techniques, tutor guide and provide practice for students learning civics and the English language
  • Conduct mock interviews in preparation for a formal immigration interview
  • Work in partnership with a classroom teacher to engage in language drills and casual conversation for students to practice their language skills
  • Provide students with assurance and confidence during classroom interaction

Volunteers will work in partnership with the staff of community-based organizations, and will use resources and training developed by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on behalf of the Midway, and will be entitled to all benefits of the Midway volunteer program.

Minimum Requirements

Must have good interpersonal skills be personable and patient. Training is provided, but experience teaching or in a classroom setting is a plus.

Duties & Commitment

A commitment of one class period per week, at the same classroom for a period of one school semester and completion of Midway and partner organization application, including Live Scan and TB test.

Volunteer Facts

Midway’s Volunteer Knot Tying Team has used 180+ miles of cord since the program began in 2007.

Military experience is not required to be a Midway volunteer. Midway’s culture includes having FUN!

Each month, 750 active volunteers contribute to Midway’s mission in various departments and roles.

Volunteers proudly drive the Midway’s operational success daily, keeping the Midway Magic alive!