Job Opportunity: Planetarium Presenter at CAS

Come join a team dedicated to the Academy’s mission, vision and values! The Academy is looking for candidates who do great work, and we know they may come from a number of different backgrounds and experiences. We encourage you to apply even if you do not believe you meet every ­one of the qualifications for the position.

The position is an onsite role and can change as business needs warrant. The candidate must easily be able to work onsite in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. Candidates are required to have up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination, including receiving a booster shot, as a condition of employment, absent qualifying exemptions in accordance with applicable laws. Individuals receiving a conditional offer of employment from the California Academy of Sciences will be provided the full text of the vaccination policy.


This part-time position is 7-19 hrs/week, $26.33/hour. Applicants should be available to work at the Academy 1-3 days a week, between 9:45am-5:30pm. Weekend, holiday and evening work will be required. We also require attendance at a monthly virtual staff meeting on 2nd Wednesday evening from 5:30 - 7:30pm. This part time position, in addition to their regular weekly shift will also cover vacation, events, and sick time requests.

The Planetarium Presenter I (one) delivers live presentations in Morrison Planetarium (you will be presenting to an audience of nearly 300 in an arena-style arrangement, with the audience looking down at you) as well as other venues in the Academy, such as Hohfeld Hall (up to 150), Science Today and the Naturalist Center (drop-in spaces for hands-on interactives), or the Hearst Forum Theater (50-100 guests), and on the museum floor. Most public planetarium shows involve introducing the show and presenting a brief “live section” during an otherwise pre-recorded show. For other programs, including those delivered to school groups, the entirety is performed live while operating the planetarium visuals from a computer interface. Presenters may also develop content for planetarium shows and for astronomy presentations in other venues, and they may also be called upon to operate telescopes and guide astronomical viewing sessions for evening and daytime programs. This position reports to the Assistant Manager of Planetarium Programs.


Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable persons with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Deliver highly engaging programs to the public throughout the museum on various topics
  • Provide astronomy and science information for guests of all ages
  • Use appropriate interpretive techniques to inspire wonder
  • Maintain a high level of enthusiasm while performing repetitive, interpretive programs
  • Provide excellent customer service to guests and staff
  • Assist in seating and directing audiences as needed in the Planetarium theater or other venues
  • Accurately and courteously answer questions from visitors
  • Assist with duties as needed such as program equipment maintenance, program evaluation, etc.
  • Help to maintain a positive work environment and to work cooperatively within a team
  • Follow all Academy safety regulations and complete all HR-assigned trainings
  • Support the Academy’s mission, vision and division-wide initiatives
  • Other duties as assigned


Applicants must be available to work weekends, evenings, and holidays.


The qualifications listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required or preferred.


Six months to one year’s experience and/or training in public speaking
Coursework, training, or background in natural or physical science, science education (formal or informal), science communication, or other relevant fields
Basic astronomy knowledge is required, and extensive knowledge is preferred
Planetarium experience, prior work with school groups, and/or telescope operation desirable


  • Excellent public speaking skills
  • Excellent interpersonal communication skills
  • Can multitask to operate planetarium controls or software while speaking smoothly and coherently
  • Manual dexterity to operate planetarium console controls and various computer input devices, including traditional computer mouse, touchscreen, or joystick controls
  • Can make complicated science concepts accessible to general audiences while maintaining scientific accuracy
  • Can adapt and maintain flexibility in changing and fast-paced environments
    Can maintain a high level of enthusiasm, energy, and creativity while performing repetitive programs on a regular basis
  • Can work well independently as well as in teams
  • Can accept feedback graciously and integrate it into practice
  • Can effectively work on diverse teams and with a diverse range of people
  • Ability to perform repetitive motions 50% of the time


Reasonable accommodations will be made to enable individuals with disabilities who meet the job’s essential functions. Ability to work safely in both outdoor and indoor environments that may include stairs, uneven paths, ladders or lifts, and secure access areas. The position requires presentation in a tiered theater and frequent visits to the museum public floor (walking on concrete floors, climbing a flight of 35 stairs in the planetarium, working in a low-light-level environment), extensive time standing, intervals of time outdoors in varying environmental conditions, tolerance of high levels of noise, and extensive public speaking, sometimes in noisy environments.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: August 16, 2022 5:00 PM PST. Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis. Read more and apply from here.


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