Morris Arboretum

Morris Arboretum

Connecting people, plants, and place.

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Employment at Morris Arboretum

Employment Opportunites

Employment Application

Please download a PDF of the Official Penn Employment Application here.
Complete the form and submit along with any other required materials, as per the individual job listings below.

Visitor Service Staff/Representative

Description: The Morris Arboretum is hiring Visitor Services Staff to assist the many guests (over 130,000 a year!) who visit the gardens.

Visitor Services Staff greet visitors, handle admissions and parking, run the gift shop, answer questions, sell memberships, and assist guests wherever possible.

Visitor Services Staff are the face of the Morris Arboretum and a vital part of the team, ensuring a memorable, positive experience for our guests. As such, VS Staff must be professional, reliable, friendly, and have exceptional customer service skills. They must also be comfortable working with computers, handling money, working outside, and standing for extended periods of time. Flexibility, working well under pressure, a sense of humor, and a strong sense of teamwork are also beneficial skills to have for this role.

This is a wonderful opportunity to support a world-renowned Arboretum, enjoy a flexible schedule, and work with amazing people.

Employment type: This is a part-time (approximately 8-16 hour/week), paid position with variable hours, primarily on weekends.

Compensation: $10.00/hour

To apply: Please send your resume and a letter of interest or brief summary about why you are interested in and qualified for the position to Christopher Dorman at

Events/Wedding Supervisors

Description: The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania is looking for Event/Wedding Supervisors to be the on-site manager during evening events (mostly weddings) during the 2015 season.

The Supervisor has three main areas of responsibility: customer service, operations, and vendor/client supervision.

Customer Service The Event/Wedding Supervisor ensures that the rental client’s needs are met throughout the evening and, whenever possible, goes above and beyond to ensure that they have a wonderful experience at the Arboretum. From time to time, weddings can be stress-inducing for those involved. That’s why it is important for our Supervisors to be calm under pressure, professional, able to think on their feet, and maintain a sense of humor.

Operations Operationally, the Event/Wedding Supervisor is on-site to make sure that the lights stay on and paper products are fully stocked. The Supervisor handles any and all issues with the facility that may arise during the event and operates the register in the Shop, as needed. At the end of the night, the Supervisor locks up and ensures that the Arboretum is closed. Because the Supervisor is the only Arboretum staffer on-site during evening events, he/she must be reliable, independent, and have a strong attention to detail.

Vendor/Client Supervision As the manager on-site, the Event/Wedding Supervisor ensures that the rental client and all third party vendors adhere to the Arboretum’s policies and procedures at all times, including clean-up and noise level requirements. As such, Supervisors must be self-confident and comfortable addressing issues directly.

Employment Type: This is a part-time, paid position with hours from 3:00PM-12:00AM (sometimes earlier or later end time, depending on event clean-up) on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays April through October. Generally, new Supervisors can expect to work 3-5 events per month.

Compensation: $25.00/hour

To Apply: please send your resume and a letter of interest or brief summary about why you are interested in and qualified for the position to Christopher Dorman at

Education Assistant and Phone Receptionist (Part Time)

This part-time position plays an integral role in the Continuing Education department by serving as an assistant and registrar for the more than 150 classes, lectures and trips Morris Arboretum offers annually.

Position responsibilities include, but are not limited to:


Employment Type: Hourly, part-time, two days per week from 9:00am – 4:30pm

To Apply: Please email your resume and cover letter to

Seasonal Gardener (Part Time)

Description: The Morris Arboretum is looking for industrious, part-time seasonal gardeners to assist with a broad range of garden maintenance activities for the ongoing care of the woody and herbaceous plant collections and turf areas. This is a 20-29 hour per week seasonal position, and flexible hours are available Monday through Friday, from 7:30am to 4:00pm; no weekend hours.

Duties and Responsibilities:


Date Available:  March 2015

Compensation:  $10.50/hour

To Apply:   Please complete the University of Pennsylvania’s Application for Temporary Employment found here: and email to Lucy Dinsmore,

Or, drop off at the Visitor Center at Morris Arboretum, 100 E. Northwestern Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19118.

Assistant Director for Continuing Education (Full Time)

Morris Arboretum offers over 150 continuing education classes to learners of all ages. The Assistant Director for Continuing Education is a full-time position. Co-lead the Continuing Education program with individual accountability in several areas including: Program Management (lead Growing Minds youth programs, support professional seminars and Continuing Education); Technology Management (Administer and use Raiser's Edge and Spark/NetCommunities, Train registration staff, support departmental IT planning) . Supervise on-line and phone course registration. Market continuing education programs with marketing team. Provide monthly reports for budget and program goals. Manage Penn Student Outreach program, engaging students with the Arboretum. The Assistant Director for Continuing Education reports to the Director of Public Programs.

BS in related discipline. MS preferred. Three to five years relevant education program experience. Public horticulture experience preferred. Driver’s license required. Administrative or equivalent experience with Raiser's Edge and Spark/Net Communities is required.

To Apply
Submit your application and letter of interest through the University of Pennsylvania’s online system. Information for submitting an application can be found at:

Horticulturist (Full Time)

Full-time position of Horticulturist is available at the Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania. This is a professional level horticulturist and garden management position. This person is responsible for the Compton portion of the Arboretum. He/she is responsible for maintaining the highest standards of presentation along the entrance drive, surrounding the visitor center and parking lots, and in the Orange Balustrade and Pennock Garden areas. He/she helps to supervise the Horticulture intern and seasonal employees, oversees volunteers, teaches and lectures, publishes articles, and interacts with donors and professional societies.

Maintaining health of plant collections, focusing on the living collections and displays throughout the section. Duties include, planting, formative pruning, staking, fertilizing, irrigating, frequent inspection of plants for any cultural or pest-related problems using accepted IPM strategies and subsequent treatments (pesticide application and/or cultural treatments). Other duties include: developing and planting annual flowering displays, lawn care, weed control, debris removal, mulching, and other practices which enhance presentation.

Participate in garden development, plant selection, and planting of his/her section in consultation with supervisors.

Consult with the Director of Horticulture concerning the accessioning and deaccessioning of plants. Monitor large trees in the Compton section. Duties include: reporting and coordinating pruning of large trees with the arborists and provide assistance when necessary to accomplish pruning or removals.

Participate in the Arboretum’s special events, spring plant sale, department project days, and snow removal in the winter.

Teach courses in the Arboretum's Education Department for amateurs and professionals. Participate as an instructor in training programs for interns. Publish articles and lecture on horticultural topics to both the general public and professional audiences.

Perform other duties as assigned.

Associate's Degree and 1 to 3 years of experience as a professional level horticulturist and garden management position or equivalent combination of education and experience; Bachelor's Degree is strongly preferred. Teaching skills and writing skills highly desirable.  Experience operating machinery preferred and a valid driver's license required.   Pesticide applicators' license expected upon employment. Salary commensurate with experience. Excellent health and retirement benefits.

To Apply
Please submit your application through the University of Pennsylvania’s online system. Information for submitting an application can be found at

Thank you for your interest in Employment at Morris Arboretum. We currently do not have any openings.

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Volunteers Needed:

Physical Facilities

Are you handy with a hammer? Do you love to paint? Did you miss your calling as a carpenter? Want to learn the ins-and-outs of fountain maintenance? The Physical Facilities Department at Morris Arboretum is looking for volunteers to help with a variety of maintenance tasks throughout the year.

Please contact Tom Wilson at 215-247-5777 ext.108 or

Horticulture Volunteer Opportunities!

Do you like gardening and getting your hands dirty? Would you like to learn more about the gardens of the Morris Arboretum? Then being a horticulture volunteer just might be the task for you! Each week our dedicated volunteers rotate throughout the entire Arboretum working in a variety of terrains. Together they tackle a number of physical garden tasks such as weeding, mulching, pruning or invasive plant removal under the supervision of the Arboretum horticulture staff. Our current program runs one weekday morning a week, but we are hoping to expand to include other weekdays as well. Previous gardening experience is helpful, but not required.

For more information please contact Pam Morris Olshefski, Curatorial Assistant, at or call 215.247.5777 ext.188.

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Weather Update:

The Arboretum is open as usual, 10:00am - 4:00pm. Please use extra caution on pathways, as some ice may persist.

Please note that winter weather conditions can change quickly, check back or call (215) 247-5777 before heading out for a visit.

Weather conditions may limit garden access to certain features even if the garden is open – please check the web site or call (215) 247-5777 for updates before visiting. Our visitors’ safety in the garden is our top priority. Therefore when inclement weather is predicted, we will make decisions about closing the garden accordingly.