Youth Engagement Coordinator

Seattle Aquarium

Seattle Aquarium

Posted on Tuesday, July 2, 2024


Youth Engagement Coordinator

Posted: Open to internal and external applicants

Reports to: Volunteer Engagement Manager

Status: Full-time, hourly, benefitted position

Hours of work: Wednesday – Sunday workweek, 8am–5pm. Some evenings will be required for training, projects and events. This is a hybrid position, onsite 2-4 days per week, including typically being onsite Saturday and Sunday, when youth volunteers are present.

Date needed: ASAP

Posting expires: Open until filled

Position description:

The Seattle Aquarium, a leading marine conservation organization, is looking for a Youth Engagement Coordinator to join the Conservation Engagement and Learning team. The Seattle Aquarium is hiring a Youth Engagement Coordinator passionate about youth leadership in solving conservation and environmental justice in their communities. The position will supervise a team and steward a suite of programs for high school and middle school aged youth including the Youth Ocean Advocates (YOA) volunteer program, Marine Science Club, Youth Ocean Conservation Summit (YOCS), and additional youth learning and service opportunities. These programs aim to advance youth as ocean literate leaders prepared and empowered to advocate for the health of the marine environment. The coordinator will plan, implement, and evaluate all aspects of youth service-based programs in collaboration with 4 year-round direct reports and 1-2 seasonal direct reports.

The coordinator must work collaboratively, in partnership with youth, aquarium staff, and external partners, to ensure diverse programming goals are made and met with equity in mind. We view our work through an environmental justice and youth empowerment lens, with the goal of removing barriers where they exist for youth and families to meaningfully engage with the Aquarium, to foster authentic, mutual relationships between the Aquarium and the community, and to bring diverse audiences together to achieve our mission. We center the experiences and access of youth of color, gender diverse and lgbtq+, youth with disabilities, and other communities who have been historically excluded in climate solutions and environmental sciences. This work supports our strategic goal of inspiring conservation for all and making the Aquarium and its programs accessible and welcoming for all ages.

Learn more about our Youth programs online:

Youth Ocean Advocates | Seattle Aquarium

Marine Science Clubs | Seattle Aquarium

Multicultural, multilingual, and diverse experiences are an asset in this role as we have a diverse and passionate team. The natural sciences and the conservation movement have historically marginalized many communities from taking on supervisory and generational thinking roles such as this. The Aquarium actively seeks to dismantle this practice and broaden participation in marine and environmental conservation professions, making them more inclusive of the full diversity of our communities and responsive to their needs and perspectives.

Key functions:

Supervision and Mentorship:

  • Supervises youth engagement mentors to successfully support youth participants and program operations. Advocating and supporting staff while managing hiring, onboarding, continuing education, accountability, mentorship and evaluation of staff.
  • Serve as a representative of the volunteer engagement team at Aquarium functions, committees, and more

Program Management:

  • Responsible for the planning, development, coordination, implementation and evaluation of service-based youth programming.
  • Leads youth engagement staff in designing and implementing educational opportunities for youth participants. Regularly leads training, club meetings, continuing education and field trip opportunities.
  • Evaluates youth engagement programming and develops reports to internal and external stakeholders. Improves existing programming and makes recommendations for new programs based upon evaluation.
  • Coordinates programmatic needs with Aquarium staff through established processes, including room and resources booking, transportation, purchasing, and catering. Assists in refining processes where needed.
  • Collaborates with volunteer engagement manager and philanthropy staff to secure funding and develop reporting information for funders. Provides input on program budgets and oversees purchasing. Communicates program successes and opportunities to internal and external audiences.
  • Researches and understands trends in youth programming, environmental justice, service learning and volunteering engagement and successfully applies them to Aquarium programs.

Partnership and Collaborations:

  • Works across teams, particularly visitor engagement, school and public programs, community engagement, equity team, and conservation programs and partnerships, to implement a comprehensive suite of programming for youth including the creation of new hands-on, experiential education programs, with attention to anti-racist, evidence-based, effective practices.
  • Works collaboratively with Aquarium staff to support youth participants in a variety of roles throughout the Aquarium including summer camp, outreach, and life sciences. Communicates with Aquarium staff regarding placement and scheduling.
  • Collaborates with outside organizations to diversify service-learning opportunities for youth. Oversees and participates in outreach to area high schools and organizations, including attending service fairs & recruitment events and providing aquarium career presentations.

Recruitment and Outreach:

  • Help shape and implement the policies and procedures for youth programs. Oversees the engagement cycle for youth participants in various programs, including the recruitment, orientation, interviewing, selection/placement, training, scheduling, supervision, evaluation, recognition and alumni efforts. Examines and improves engagement cycle processes to ensure programs are equitable and accessible to youth participants.
  • Communicate with current and prospective program participants and other stakeholders via email, phone, social media and in person.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Skills and experience:
The skills and abilities listed below may be demonstrated through a combination of relevant cultural and community programs, jobs, internships, volunteer experience, and/or formal or informal education. If you meet some of the requirements and you are passionate about our mission and our ocean, we encourage you to apply and look forward to learning more about you.

  • Any combination of education, professional or lived experience which includes 4 years of leading youth programming or mentoring youth. 2 years of experience supervising staff and/or volunteers.
  • Interest and educational, professional or lived experience in marine science, environmental science, conservation and/or environmental justice or similar fields.
  • Interest and experience supporting, mentoring and maintaining healthy relationships with youth participants. Demonstrated practice of establishing trust and authentically listening to and partnering with youth to develop effective programs.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills and the interest and ability to mentor and support conservation leaders based upon youth interests.
  • Experience supervising and mentoring volunteers and staff, including experience proactively coaching and providing feedback to staff and volunteers.
  • Prior experience and demonstrated commitment to addressing barriers and systematic oppression which disproportionally effect members of marginalized communities engaging in programs.
  • Experience leading and designing trainings. Comfort speaking and presenting before large groups.
  • Strong organizational skills and experience coordinating complex schedules and resources.
  • Ability to communicate in English to program participants; written and oral second language proficiency is preferred.
  • Comfort with e-mail, phone and social media communication tools and familiarity with MS Office programs, including Word, Excel, Outlook and Teams.
  • Washington driver’s license (or eligibility to obtain) and ability to drive Aquarium vehicles, including 15 passanger vans preferred.
  • Adult, child and baby first aid and CPR/AED training and certification required within 30 days of employment.
  • Demonstrates an understanding of the Aquarium’s Mission and Values, including Regenerative and Equity work.

Working conditions:

  • Be able to stay in place (seated or standing) for long periods of time.
  • Occasionally lift up to 30 pounds, assisted or unassisted.
  • Requires duties to be carried out in offices, exhibits, classrooms, outdoor field excursions and off site training and travel.
  • Job requires occasionally working outdoors in all weather conditions and terrain.
  • Driving Aquarium vehicles to meetings, trainings, and field locations.
  • Flexible schedule and ability to work evenings, holidays and weekends.

Salary and benefits: $27.79 - $31.00/hour. Dependent on experience. Please include salary expectations in your materials. Full-time staff are eligible for the Seattle Aquarium’s comprehensive benefits package to include medical, vision, dental, an employer-funded health reimbursement account, medical and dependent care flexible spending accounts, life insurance, long-term disability, 403b retirement fund with employer match, access to a subsidized ORCA pass, a Seattle Aquarium Family Plus membership and generous paid time off.

How to apply: The Seattle Aquarium is committed to expanding a diverse, equitable, and inclusive conservation movement. We are invested in building an Aquarium with a wide variety of backgrounds, identities, languages, cultural ways of knowing, and life experiences. We know research shows that society has conditioned communities of color, trans and gender non-conforming people, immigrants, people with disabilities, and other marginalized candidates to more frequently not apply to a job because they don’t feel that they meet all of the qualifications listed even if they are qualified. If you meet some of the requirements and you are passionate about our mission and our ocean, we encourage you to apply and look forward to learning more about you.

Interested candidates should upload a résumé to our online application to be considered. Application review will begin immediately.

Please let us know if you require a reasonable accommodation to apply for this job by emailing us at

Note: If offered the position, candidates must pass a background check and motor vehicle records check. Conviction record is not an automatic disqualifier; we are a second chance employer. Regarding driving records: Within the last three years, you must not have had more than two moving traffic violations or any major violation (DUI, reckless driving, negligent driving, etc.).

About the Seattle Aquarium:

The Seattle Aquarium is a respected authority on Puget Sound, the Salish Sea and the world’s one ocean. Our passionate staff increases awareness and drives the change needed to preserve and protect our marine environment by providing an inspiring visitor experience, engaging daytime and evening events, conservation education programs for people of all ages and backgrounds, community outreach to marginalized populations, research that advances understanding of animals in our care and their counterparts in the wild, advocacy and policy work, an award-winning volunteer program, high-impact marketing and communications, and more.

Our values, developed in conjunction with our staff, include commitments to adopting and promoting sustainable practices, creating awe-inspiring experiences, constantly learning and improving, fostering an inclusive community, maintaining scientific credibility through evidence-based practices and honoring our unique place by using our location and history as a lens for larger understanding.

Proudly accredited by the Association of Zoos & Aquariums, we’re among the top 10 aquariums in the U.S. by attendance, and we welcome over 850,000 people each year. Guided by our mission of Inspiring Conservation of Our Marine Environment, we’re working to substantially increase our conservation impact by expanding our campus with a new building, the Ocean Pavilion. Learn more at


We anticipate the following recruiting schedule for those candidates who are selected for consideration. The following dates are preliminary and subject to change. We will work with candidates to set interview dates. If hired, relocation assistance is not available.

  • Application deadline: Open until filled.
  • Interviews completed by August 2024.
  • Start date: ASAP.