Curatorial Assistant II (Ichthyology)

San Francisco, CA

About the Opportunity
Reporting to the Collections Manager of Ichthyology, the Curatorial Assistant-II performs various duties related to specimen preparation and housing as well as assisting with processing and shipment of specimens being sent to other institutions. The job will involve a considerable amount of work in the areas of data entry, and project related curatorial tasks. The Curatorial Assistant-II will also participate in ongoing operations of the department, but will concentrate on Hope for Reefs specimen processing and digitization. The responsibilities for this level will include some or if not all of the duties noted below. This is a temporary full-time, 30-hour per week position with a duration of 6 months, ending June 30, 2023.

Organizational Culture:
Join a team dedicated to the Academy’s mission, vision and values! Currently, the Academy has a new strategic plan including three initiatives – Hope for Reefs, Thriving California, and Islands 2030 – that leverage biodiversity science, environmental learning, and collaborative engagement to regenerate fragile ecosystems around the world. Learn more at

We hope you are inspired by what we do and are excited to contribute to our mission. The mission of the California Academy of Sciences is to regenerate the natural world through science, learning, and collaboration. The Academy is looking for candidates who do great work, and we know they may come from a number of different backgrounds and experiences. We encourage you to apply even if you do not believe you meet every one of the qualifications for the position.

This position is based in San Francisco, California. Please do not apply if you are not willing to relocate. Staff are currently expected to work from the Academy offices 5 days per week, which may fluctuate based on business needs. Candidates are required to have up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination, including receiving a booster shot, as a condition of employment, absent qualifying exemptions in accordance with applicable laws. Individuals receiving a conditional offer of employment from the California Academy of Sciences will be provided the full text of the vaccination policy.

We hope you are inspired by what we do and are excited to contribute to our mission. The Academy is looking for candidates who do great work, and we know they may come from a number of different backgrounds and experiences. We encourage you to apply even if you do not believe you meet every one of the qualifications for the position.

Key Responsibilities

  • Performs routine curatorial duties such as specimen preparation and integrating newly acquired specimens/objects and curating/organizing existing coral reef collections
  • Processes specimens for shipment, including properly wrapping specimens, and preparing shipping forms/labels
  • Performs database entry related to specimens, label production, data capture, and shipping
  • Ability to manage project-oriented specimen processing including maintenance and organization of specimens, documentation, supplies, files, and project reports
  • May involve library and internet work to clarify nomenclatural issues and geography and/or georeferencing
  • May train and work with departmental volunteers and students
  • May assist visitors to the department
  • May play a support role in Academy Health and Safety
  • May give public demonstrations, departmental tours, and answer inquiries
  • Follow all Academy safety regulations
  • Perform other job-related duties as assigned


  • Bachelor’s degree in Biology or closely related field
  • General knowledge of literature and skilled in taxonomic and geographic research
  • A minimum of 2 years’ experience with museum collections
  • Or an equivalent combination of education and experience


  • Good organizational and time management skills
  • Specific knowledge of ichthyology collections, nomenclature, and taxonomy desirable
  • Ability to understand and accurately follow detailed instructions
  • Ability to responsibly handle delicate or irreplaceable specimens
  • Ability to type accurately and do computer data entry
  • Experience in digital macro and micro-photography desirable
  • Ability to contribute new ideas, create inventive solutions, and find efficiencies to transform detailed processes
  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively
  • Demonstrated commitment to equity and inclusion
  • Ability to perform computer data entry 75% of the day

Physical Environment: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential job duty satisfactorily. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable qualified individuals with disabilities to perform essential job functions.

  • Ability to lift 50 lbs.
  • Ability to climb ladders 20% of the day
  • Ability to reach above shoulder level for 20% of the day

Compensation and Benefits
Hourly hiring/flat rate: $29.00 per hour. Hourly rate will vary based on experience and relevant skills/knowledge set. The Academy offers a total compensation package that emphasizes both base salary and comprehensive benefits.

Schedule: Full-Time, 30 hours per week. Benefits will be determined based on hours per week worked.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Review of applications will begin on December 12, 2022 and will continue until the position is filled.

The California Academy of Sciences will give full consideration for employment to all qualified applicants with criminal histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance (SF Police Code, Article 49).

The California Academy of Sciences is an Equal Opportunity Employer and is committed to ensure that all employees and applicants receive equal consideration and treatment, regardless of race, color, creed, gender (including gender identity or gender expression), religion, marital or domestic partner status, age, place of birth, national origin or ancestry, physical, mental or medical disability, height or weight, sex, sexual orientation, citizenship, military service status, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by state or federal law or local ordinance.



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