Volunteers are essential to the daily operations here at the Duke Lemur Center. There are a variety of volunteer opportunities that require different time commitments and focus on different interests. Please select one or multiple volunteer opportunities and apply directly online for the positions. Our volunteer coordinators should reply to you shortly. Thank you for your interest in volunteering at the Duke Lemur Center.

Technician Assistant

Thank you for your interest in our volunteer Technician Assistant (TA) Program. We are currently accepting applications for the fall. Applications will close on June 16th.

The Technician Assistant (5708_2DH8138TA) program at the Duke Lemur Center was initiated in October 2008. The program is designed to give students and the public an opportunity to volunteer their time and become involved in the husbandry of lemurs. TAs assist full-time Primate Technicians with a variety of tasks, including diet preparation, cleaning of animal areas, development and distribution of enrichment, behavioral observations, and daily upkeep of the facility.

Our volunteers are an invaluable resource for the center and include high school, undergraduate, and graduate students, as well as professional members of the community. We often look to our pool of dedicated volunteers when other opportunities or needs arise at the center. Our TAs have been chosen to participate as research assistants, veterinary volunteers, and interns at the center. We also currently have three full-time Technicians that began their careers at the DLC as volunteer TAs!

Requirements to become a Technician Assistant:

  • Commitment to work one 4-hour shift each week for a minimum of 6 months
  • Results of TB test that has been administered within 90 days of starting
  • Proof of MMR Vaccine
  • Proof of current health insurance
  • Age 18 or above

If you are interested in becoming Technician Assistant please click here to complete and submit the application.

If you have any questions, please contact Erin Shaw at erin.shaw@duke.edu

Where in the world are our former Technician Assistants now? Check it out HERE. If you are a former TA and would like to update us on what you’ve been up to, contact Erin Shaw at erin.shaw@duke.edu.

Tour Guide

_ lemurpalooza_DSC7041The Duke Lemur Center conducts public tours year-round, seven days a week and is in need of volunteers who are willing to lead guided tours of up to fifteen people.  Education volunteers must comfortable speaking in front of small, large and mixed aged audiences. Our tour guides educate the public about the DLC’s mission, conservation initiatives, research, and the individual species that are on the tour path for our Lemurs Live tour.

Requirements to become a Tour Guide:

  • Commitment to work one 2-hour shift each week for a minimum of 6 months
  • Results of TB test that has been given within the last 12 months
  • Proof of current health insurance
  • Ages 18 and above

If you are interested in becoming Tour guide please click here to complete and submit the application.

If you have any questions regarding the tour guide program please contact Megan McGrath at megan.mcgrath@duke.edu or Alanna Marron at Alanna.marron@duke.edu.

Garden Volunteer

Are you looking to get your hands dirty and work outside? If so, we need you! The Duke Lemur Center is looking for volunteers to help care for the Duke Lemur Center vegetable garden. The garden and various fruiting plants provide a supplemental organic food source for our resident lemurs. Garden duties include planting, weeding, watering, harvesting, composting, and occasional hard labor of working the soil. No gardening experience necessary, but is always helpful. A 2-4 hour commitment per week is required. As fruits and vegetables are harvested, volunteers are welcome to extend their time at the DLC and watch the lemurs enjoy their home grown food!

If you are interested in becoming a Garden Volunteer,  please click here to complete and submit the application.

If you have questions regarding the Duke Lemur Center vegetable garden, please contact Charlie Welch at charles.welch@duke.edu

Junior Docent

The Duke Lemur Center’s junior docent program is designed to provide teens (ages 13-18) volunteer experience while learning about the natural world, conservation, and the research conducted at the DLC.  Junior docents will be responsible for setting up artifact tables and engaging guests with Malagasy cultural items and bio-facts on lemurs and other unique species in Madagascar.  They will gain oral communication skills and experience interacting with the public in a professional setting.  After 6 months, junior docents ages 17 and above are eligible to train on leading tours, if desired.

Requirements to become a Junior Docent:

  • Ages 13 and above
  • Commitment to work two 3-hour shifts per month for a minimum of 6 months
  • Must submit a letter of recommendation from a non-family source in addition to the online application

We are not currently accepting applications for the Junior Docent position. Applications for this program will reopen in the fall.

Please contact Kay Welser at kay.welser@duke.edu with any questions regarding the Junior Docent Program.

Group Volunteer Projects

Are you interested in bringing your organization out for a day of service to benefit the lemurs? We host student organizations, scout troops, and company community service teams, among others, for project days throughout the spring, summer, and fall. Projects range from animal enclosure maintenance to the development of animal enrichment and construction of enclosure structures. The maximum group size for a service event is 15 people and the projects are scheduled for a half-day at the center.

For more information about setting up a volunteer group service event, please contact Erin Shaw at erin.shaw@duke.edu.


Duke will cover the cost of Duke-related trips to and from the Lemur Center for students and employees through the 2016-17 academic year. Get started using the Duke Lemur Center Uber ride by visiting https://parking.duke.edu/buses_vans/uber/. Here’s how to access a fare-free ride:

  • The ride must begin and end within boundaries on West, Central or East campuses.
  • Rides must take place between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m. seven days a week, with Saturday service until 8:30PM.
  • Uber accounts must be registered with a Duke.edu email address.
  • Visit parking.duke.edu/uber to agree to an electronic waiver and release form, which will then provide a discount code to cover the cost.
  • Enter the code in the “Promotions” menu of the app.






Tours + Education