Gems and Metals Virtual Camp Instructor

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Deadline to Apply:

Friday, February 26, 2021, 11:45pm


United States

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Job Description:

The FHSU Sternberg Museum Science Camps program is hiring the following staff position for summer 2021. The Science Camp experience provides students with valuable perspective on science communities, careers, and field-specific employable skills. We also strongly emphasize communication, problem solving, collaboration, leadership, and healthy community-building. Students will learn these broadly applicable professional skills along with advanced science concepts and topic-specific methods. Instructors work with the Camps Director David Levering to develop and implement their respective curricula in following the mission and culture of the Sternberg Science Camps program.

Our students come from a variety of regions throughout the US, with some international participants as well. They are eager to learn all you can teach them about the subject of the camp. As a result, they typically move through content very quickly, with frequent in-depth questions about the subject matter. As a result, successful instructor and teaching assistant applicants must be able to demonstrate an advanced knowledge of concepts, techniques, and topics in the respective fields of each camp. 

Sternberg Museum Science Camps are unable to assist with international employment paperwork or logistics. International applicants must have, or be able to procure, a United States bank account and viable United States mailing address, as per FHSU requirements. All applicants must be able to pass a U.S. criminal background check, which will be administered by Fort Hays State University. 

We strongly encourage applications from individuals in demographics underrepresented in the professional earth and life science. Our students are more diverse every year, and we value students learning from diverse voices. 

Content outline:

Students will delve deep inside the Earth, as they explore the formation of some of our most valuable geological resources, from precious stones to rare metals. We will explore the properties that give minerals their valuable qualities, and the immense role they play in our daily lives.

  • Properties of minerals and metals
  • Formation in the earth
  • Modern mining practices
  • Past, present, and future uses
  • The geology of modern technology
  • Group inquiry projects
  • Lessons and discussions lead by instructional staff
  • Guest presenters
  • Virtual field trips
  • Educational games and group community-building activities
  • Research article reading tutorials


  •  July 25 - August 6, 2021 

Required qualifications:

  • Completed Masters degree in Geology, with relevant thesis topic and coursework.
  • High energy, engaging, friendly personality.
  • Extensive background in mineralogy and mineral formation processes.
  • Awareness of metal ore genesis and typical geologic conditions that facilitate it.
  • Understanding of typical mineral and metal extraction and processing methods.
  • Prior experience and enthusiasm for working with novice students in educational settings.
  • Prior experience with verbal educational content delivery. vii. Ability to pass a background check as required by Fort Hays State University (parent institution of the Sternberg Museum). (The Sternberg Museum covers the cost of this.)
  • Willingness to complete pre-camp staff training materials as provided by Sternberg Camps.
  • Willingness to complete post-camp feedback and assessment procedures

Prefered qualifications:

  • Successful completion of comprehensive exams in a PhD program.
  • Demonstrable prior experience with logistics management.
  • Prior work in science outreach.
  • Prior experience managing students in a professional academic or research setting.
  • Prior experience with active and inquiry-based teaching methods. 
  • Moderate or better knowledge of earth products used in ubiquitous modern technologies.
  • Mineral molecular structures and photo-physics that give desirable optical qualities in gemstones. 


  • $750/week ($1,500 total) for instruction of camp.
  • $600 for curriculum development.
  • Curriculum development and instructor salary are bundled together in paychecks. 

Additional details:

  • Each virtual camp is also assigned a Teaching Assistant staff member. Typically these TAs are alumni of our camps who are now in college.
  • Each virtual camp includes a camp kit for each student and staff member. Per-student budget for high school camp kits is $250. These kits are mailed to students and staff in advance of the camp starting. The instructor is responsible for working with the Camps Director to select the contents of the kit for their camp.

How to Apply:

  • Please send a 1-2 page cover letter with contact information, a current CV with three professional references plus contact information, and a copy of your most recent transcripts (unofficial is fine) to Sternberg Science Camps Director David Levering at Please contact David with questions or requests for additional information.
  • Notifications for interviews will go out within two weeks of the application deadline.