Work at Camp


Summer Opportunities at MNHC’s Outdoor Discovery Day Camp

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Join our team and make a difference in your community

At the Montana Natural History Center, our mission is to connect people to nature. As a Seasonal Naturalist with our Outdoor Discovery Day Camps, you will have the opportunity to engage Missoula-area kids with our wonderful outdoor spaces and help them create a sense of stewardship and belonging. Help us inspire the new generation of nature lovers and action-takers! Discover the wonders of the outdoors, lead fun activities, and make a difference in your community. Join our team at Montana Natural History Center’s Outdoor Discovery Day Camps and be part of an unforgettable summer experience.

View the full job description here.

Volunteer! There are so many ways to lend a helping hand.

Why Volunteer with Camps?

MNHC summer camp is the perfect choice for families looking for a fun and safe summer experience for their nature lovers. With a variety of themes, from Nature Detectives to Water Wonders, our camps are full of activities and crafts that keep campers engaged, active, and curious.

Our experienced Seasonal Naturalists love to connect campers to nature and keep them safe while they explore local natural areas.

Ways to Volunteer

  • Read to the Pre-K Group – Meet us at MNHC and read a few books to our Pre-K group before they head off to rest time!
  • Lead crafts in the garden – Our campers love to create. Join us during aftercare from 3:30 – 5:30 in the garden and lead fun crafts and activities.
  • Go fishing – Our Water Wonders camp explores all things water – aquatic macroinvertebrates, healthy streams, responsible fishing – and covers some fishing basics. If you are an expert angler and love to share your passion with young enthusiasts, help us teach campers how to fish!

Make your summer count for an internship!

We can work with you and your university advisor to enrich your summer with MNHC and turn it into an internship. If you have more questions on what that could entail, please reach out using the button below!

Understand the Hiring Process


We begin accepting applications on January 5th, 2024. We interview and hire on a rolling basis. If you’d like to apply, please submit the following in PDF form:

  • Resume
  • Cover Letter
  • 3 References


Interviews typically last about an hour and can take place in person at the Montana Natural History Center or over Zoom.




If you are offered the position and have signed a Letter of Intent, we can begin the onboarding paperwork in person or virtually.



Training and Start Date

Once you have completed the onboarding process, you are ready to begin your job at camp! Training takes two weeks and begins on May 27th.

Keep scrolling for more information on training topics!


2024 Outdoor Discovery Day Camp Timeline



Application Process Opens




All Summer Staff Hired and Onboarded




Summer Staff Training Begins




First Week of Camp

Theme: Nature Detectives



Second Week of Camp

Theme: Water Wonders



Third Week of Camp

Theme: Fossil Finders



No Camp – Week of 4th of July



Fourth Week of Camp

Theme: Nature’s Architects



Fifth Week of Camp

Theme: Wild Wanderers




Sixth Week of Camp

Theme: Nature’s Detectives




Seventh Week of Camp

Theme: Water Wonders




Eighth Week of Camp

Theme: Fossil Finders




Ninth Week of Camp

Theme: Nature’s Architects



Final Week of Camp

Theme: Wild Wanderers


A Day in the Life 

Seasonal Naturalist

Daily Camp Schedule

Your job as a Seasonal Naturalist may vary, but here is a schedule of what you can expect to do every day.

8:00 AM – The first Seasonal Naturalist arrives at work and gathers supplies for the day.

8:30 AM – Before care begins and summer campers start to arrive.

9:30 AM – The second Seasonal Naturalist arrives, and the camp day begins.

10:00 AM – The welcome circle begins with some games, a review of the camp contract, and an overview of the activities for the day.

10:30 AM – Travel to your field site. Our Outdoor Discovery Day Camps utilize many of Missoula’s outdoor and recreational spaces, and most of the camp days are spent outside, exploring these places.

11:00 AM – First naturalist activity for the day – this always depends on the day and the camp’s theme, but activities range from exploring lichen and mushrooms, skulls and furs, or searching streams for aquatic macroinvertebrates.

12:00 PM – Lunch

12:30 PM – Second naturalist activity for the day

2:00 PM – Travel back to the Montana Natural History Center

2:30 PM – Craft or STEM activity

3:00 PM – Closing Circle

3:30 PM – Aftercare in the Nature Adventure Garden

4:00 PM – First Seasonal Naturalist leaves for the day

5:30 PM – All campers are gone, and the second Seasonal Naturalist leaves for the day

Summer Camp Training

As new Seasonal Naturalists, the two-week training period (beginning May 27th) will help you feel confident and prepared to succeed through the summer. We cover topics such as:

  • MNHC’s mission and values
  • Camp safety
  • Social-emotional learning at camp
  • Making observations and questioning strategies from the BEETLES curriculum
  • Trauma-informed approach and behavior management strategies
  • Self and community care at camp
  • Sensitive issues
  • And all sorts of nature activities that you will lead with your campers through the summer

Each day of training starts at 9 AM and ends at 5 PM. You will also learn all sorts of fun icebreakers, name games, energizers, and other nature games. We leave some space for reflections, personal needs breaks, and community building each day.

Get In Touch

Not ready to apply yet, but have a few questions? Reach out any time!