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Minnesota Childrens Museum Blog

Last week we proudly vested Julie and Gary as new visitor assistants (VAs). When we hire a new VA, we are looking for someone with a good attitude who enjoys interacting with people. During the interview we actually make them go on a test drive- prospective VAs go out onto the floor with the interviewer and have to interact with some children while they are playing.

Once hired, a VA has to go through about 12 hours of training before they are “vested” – given their official purple vest. After being vested, a VA goes through an additional 30-60 days and about 40 hours more training before they are all done. What a lot of people don’t realize is that the same staff members that are playing with children and monitoring the galleries – these are the same staff members that selling tickets at the Box Office and running some of the programs. That cross-training allows us to best meet visitor needs because we can move people around as traffic patterns change.

An interesting fact: 25% of the staff in the visitor services department started out as volunteers!

-Jessica Turgeon, director of organizational development and visitor services


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