Volunteer Spotlight: Paulette W.

At the Greensboro Science Center, we are honored to welcome approximately 750 volunteers each year, giving a cumulative 36,000+ hours of their time. With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, our volunteers help us carry out our mission each day, educating our visitors about our animals and exhibits and inspiring them to learn more.

This week, we’d like to introduce you to Paulette W.

Paulette W.

Paulette says:

I have been volunteering at the Greensboro Science Center since January of 2015.  A typical volunteer commitment for me is 8-10 hours per month even though I work and go to school.  I’m a SciQuarium Docent and a BODIES REVEALED Exhibit Guide.  I also thoroughly enjoy helping out with events such as our Tuxedo Trot, See to Believe Gala and Brews & Bubbles.

Volunteering is always something that I have enjoyed, and have done so since I was 14. I have loved going to the GSC since I moved here in 2008 to attend Guilford College, so I figured I would volunteer in order to learn more about the animals and to be able to be a part of my local community. It’s also a plus that I get to come whenever I want to visit or volunteer. I also love being able to utilize the super fun SKYWILD!

The most rewarding aspect of volunteering for me is when I see what I have taught someone, particularly younger children, really makes a difference. I love being able to see a child take in information I am teaching them and see them utilize it – may it be more questions, or a smile, or perhaps they then teach their family what they just learned. That means more to me than most interactions. Also, I have met some genuinely great people through the GSC. I feel very comfortable and friendly with our volunteer coordinators as well as several volunteers in the Volunteer Program.  Events such as the Volunteer Appreciation Night really put an emphasis on such peer –to-peer interactions.

Volunteer Spotlight: Christine S.

At the Greensboro Science Center, we are honored to welcome approximately 750 volunteers each year, giving a cumulative 36,000+ hours of their time. With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, our volunteers help us carry out our mission each day, educating our visitors about our animals and exhibits and inspiring them to learn more.

This week, we’d like to introduce you to Christine S. Christine has been volunteering for about two and a half years.  She volunteers once a week as a zoo docent and sometimes for special events.

Christine says, “I have been volunteering through my church as a faith formation teacher, in a grief support ministry and also for the Greensboro Youth Choir and I wanted to broaden where I volunteer.  I have always loved the GSC and started coming as a visitor before I even lived here, over 20 years ago.  I love all it has to offer to the public and have been impressed with the many positive changes, and knew I would be honored to be a part of this.”

Christine S

Christine says it doesn’t matter how many times you visit the GSC… each time is completely different and that is what makes volunteering so much fun.  “There is always someone that will make you smile, a child or an adult that says something funny about the animals.  The animals themselves can be funny and always are amazing to watch, and can also can make me smile or laugh.  It is so rewarding to be a part of that.”

“I also love when I can share something about the animals at the Science Center that someone didn’t know. Sometimes I’ll have an adult or teacher in a group come back to tell me that one of the children shared information they heard from me.  That is what we hope for, that information will be passed along.  That I can be a small part of that definitely makes volunteering fun and rewarding.”

Volunteer Spotlight: Robert P.

At the Greensboro Science Center, we are honored to welcome approximately 750 volunteers each year, giving a cumulative 36,000+ hours of their time. With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, our volunteers help us carry out our mission each day, educating our visitors about our animals and exhibits and inspiring them to learn more.

This week, we’d like to introduce you to Robert P.

Robert P.

Robert says:

I’ve been volunteering here at the Greensboro Science Center for almost two years. I typically volunteer two times per month during the school year as an Exhibit Guide in SciPlay Bay. During the summer, I also volunteer as a Teacher’s Assistant for a few of the week-long camps.

Since I was a kid, I have always had a love for teaching science. The Greensboro Science Center gives me that opportunity to interact with children and adults of all ages and help prepare me for the real world.

I remember during the Summer of 2015, I was working on my last day as a Teacher’s Assistant and one little boy in my camp came up to me and gave me a picture that he had drawn of me that said “Have a great year and you are the best teacher I  ever had.” It was probably the best moment I have ever had at the Science Center

Volunteer Spotlight: Jake A.

At the Greensboro Science Center, we are honored to welcome approximately 750 volunteers each year, giving a cumulative 36,000+ hours of their time. With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, our volunteers help us carry out our mission each day, educating our visitors about our animals and exhibits and inspiring them to learn more.

This week, we’d like to introduce you to Jake A:

Jake A

I started with the Greensboro Science Center in 2013 and have served in many different areas. During the summer, I have been a Teacher’s Assistant and an Exhibit Guide. Currently, I volunteer as either a Zoo or Aquarium Docent.

 

I was introduced to volunteering through another volunteer, and would definitely recommend it to anyone who was interested in the program. There are countless opportunities and the community that is created with the other volunteers and staff members is such a rewarding experience. They all share a love of learning and nature.

 

Every shift, I get to meet new people while sharing cool facts about the animals and the exhibits. The volunteer community is so welcoming and tight-knit, it is a pleasure to simply be part of it. The Volunteer Department seeks to share with visitors the awesomeness of nature. By interacting with other volunteers and being part of the program as a whole, this has a positive impact on visitors and myself alike.

GSC Welcomes Two New Honeybee Colonies

The Greensboro Science Center is home to two new honeybee hives located in the zoo at the Friendly Farm. The warm weather we experienced early this year has stimulated colonies of bees to head out, seeking new hives. On two separate occasions in the last couple of weeks, colonies of European honeybees were discovered building hives on the GSC’s perimeter fence. Both colonies were found and retrieved by the GSC’s volunteer beekeeper, Linda Walbridge and GSC Horticulturist, Chandra Metheny. The team had to assemble quickly to remove the colonies and place them in new hives because the freezing nighttime temperatures would have killed the bees.

The process of safely and humanely moving a colony of bees is quite fascinating. Geared up in protective bee suits, Linda and Chandra carefully and meticulously removed the temporary hives from the fence. One major factor in ensuring a successful move is to identify and seize the queen bee. The colony will follow the queen to a new hive, but without her, the colony’s chance of survival is dramatically decreased. The staff had to be especially careful to safely sequester the queen into a transport capsule. The capsule is designed to allow worker bees the ability to easily move into and out of the capsule but due to the queen’s size she remains in the capsule. The worker bees were then placed in a bucket and taken to the new hive. The bees were particularly docile during this process. They were always aware of the queen’s safe location and since they didn’t have any brood or honey in their temporary hive, there was no need to be defensive.

Removing Hive from Fence

Moving Bees

The queen and her colony were safely relocated to a new hive at the Friendly Farm. The queen remained in her capsule for a few days where she produced pheromones, or scents, that alerted the other bees to her location. Additionally, the worker bees displayed to the rest of the colony the location of the queen, so the entire colony could make their way to the hive. The display is fascinating to witness–worker bees point to the queen by raising their back sides with heads down, using their hind limbs and abdomen to point towards the queen.

Once our colony was safely placed in the new hive, they had to withstand the night’s cold temperatures. To accomplish this, the bees generated heat by collectively beating their wings while surrounding and protecting the queen. They took turns moving around to allow each bee the opportunity to get close to the center and stay warm. By working together, the colony survived the cold weather. The GSC is supplementing the hives with sugar water. This will help sustain the colony while they learn their new habitat and map out tracks to new sources of food.

New Hive

Native and European honeybees, as with many pollinators, are vital to our food system and the ecological stability of our planet. However, they have suffered significant declines of recent. These declines are largely from habitat loss, disease, an increase in pesticides and changes in our climate. The successful rescue of these hives provides the GSC an opportunity to safely conserve and sustain bee populations. Staff will continue to provide bee-friendly garden spaces on campus to support these invaluable creatures. Be sure to stop by the Friendly Farm during your next visit and take a moment to see our new honeybee hives!

Three Hives

Volunteer Spotlight: Jacob K.

At the Greensboro Science Center, we are honored to welcome approximately 750 volunteers each year, giving a cumulative 36,000+ hours of their time. With a friendly greeting and a warm smile, our volunteers help us carry out our mission each day, educating our visitors about our animals and exhibits and inspiring them to learn more.

This week, we’d like to introduce you to Jacob K. Jacob tells us:

I have had the pleasure of being a Greensboro Science Center Docent since the beginning of 2014. After I had just turned 16 years old, I came across an advertisement for the recently opened SciQuarium. After being reminded of the memories from when I had visited the Greensboro Science Center as a young child, I soon looked into the possibility of getting regularly involved with the GSC.

One thing led to another and I was thrilled to finally be given the opportunity to serve as a Greensboro Science Center Zoo Docent Volunteer. Two years later, I am still delighted to get to regularly work with Greensboro Science Center staff and interact with many of the visitors who share the same joy for animals, learning, and the environment.

Jacob K Being able to volunteer in a zoo like the one at the Greensboro Science Center has always been a dream of mine. As a young child, I was always looking for new ways to help spread the word of the importance of environmental stewardship. For this reason, I love being able to not only talk to visitors about the species at the zoo, but also inspire many of the young children about the importance of conserving their planet. Favorite exhibits of mine include some of the endangered species such as the Javan Gibbon and our Tigers.

Although I have loved each and every minute I spend volunteering at the Greensboro Science Center, I will inevitably have to bid farewell at the end of this summer as I prepare to start my freshman year of college at Emory University where I currently plan to double-major in Environmental Science and Business Management. Until then, I continue to look forward to serving my community at the Greensboro Science Center.

Spring Break at SKYWILD

SKYWILD Spider WebLooking for something new and exciting to do during spring break 2016? Take to the trees with a one-of-a-kind animal-inspired aerial adventure at SKYWILD! From Friday, March 25 through Sunday, April 3, SKYWILD will be open daily from 9am to 5pm to give you plenty of opportunities for adventure.

With challenges like a giant spider web to traverse, a slide that takes you over the zoo path, a cargo net to climb, and monkey bars, bridges and huge metal hoops to navigate through, SKYWILD is much more than just a zip line… although we have a few of those, too!

SKYWILD Zip Line

When you arrive, members of our Sky Patrol will show you how to use the equipment and give you a chance to test it out in Ground School. After that, it’s your chance to conquer the course!

Our course features three levels of intensity so you can design your own experience. Two easy courses, three intermediate courses and two advanced courses are available for you to choose from during your 2-hour adventure. Take on as many or as few as you’d like!

Want to know more about what to expect during your visit? Check out this short video.

Ready to go? Reserve your adventure online at http://www.skywild.org/.