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Observatory Assistant

Share your passion for all things astronomical by volunteering in the Crosby Ramsey Memorial Observatory, located on the rooftop of MSC.  This position involves assisting Observatory Staff in running public programs.  Volunteers will use a computer-controlled telescope to assist guests as they view the sun, moon, stars, planets and other astronomical events.

Duties:

  • Usher guests to/from the Observatory
  • Provide general explanations to guests regarding astronomy topics
  • Engage guests waiting in line in the Observatory; offer them a general idea of what to expect
    • notice craters on the Moon
    • notice phase of Venus
    • spot moons of Saturn
  • Operate main or subsidiary telescopes
  • Facilitate activities for guests

Required Knowledge/Skills:

  • Ability to speak to and deal with public in courteous and friendly manner
  • Outgoing; at ease with people
  • Prior knowledge of astronomy and telescopes preferred, but willingness to learn is acceptable substitute

Physical Requirements:

  • Ability to use stairs to the Observatory

Training: 

Provided by Observatory staff, where you will learn how to run the 1927, 8″ Alvan Clark refracting telescope, as well as other telescopes at our disposal.

Schedule: 

Must be able to assist at least once per month for Friday night and/or Saturday afternoon public viewing.  All Observatory volunteer shifts are weather dependent.