Thank you for your interest in volunteering at the 22nd Biennial Conference on the Biology of Marine Mammals in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada! We require volunteers to help with a number of tasks , from little to big, and we appreciate your interest - volunteers are essential to making this conference a success.

We have a limited budget to provide some volunteer positions reimbursement for conference registration fees. To be considered for one of these positions you must fill out a volunteer application, so be sure to apply early as these will be filled on a first-come first-serve basis.  Additionally, volunteers are required to attend an in-person training in Halifax on Sunday, October 22nd, so be sure to plan your travel to Halifax accordingly.


Incentives for Volunteering

In addition to the warm gooey emotions associated with giving back to your community and a stylish flamboyant volunteer garment, if you are able to volunteer at least 12 hours of your time, you can apply for a volunteer position to receive a reimbursement towards your conference registration costs. Student members will be reimbursed their full conference registration (USD $150), developing country members will be reimbursed their full conference registration (USD $225), and full members will be reimbursed half their conference registration (USD $200). This reimbursement will be paid in Halifax after completion of your final scheduled shift. One welcoming reception ticket is provided per volunteer.


Requirement to Receive Reimbursement

The following are the requirements to receive a registration reimbursement for the conference:

  • Volunteers are needed before, during, and after the conference and are required to work a minimum of 12 hours, likely spread over 3-4 shifts. If you wish to contribute additional hours or shifts that would be greatly appreciated; however, additional hours will not be reimbursed. 
  • You will be asked to indicate your availability on the application form. If you submitted an abstract, you will be asked your presentation type (oral, poster, video, or unknown). This will enable us to ensure you are not scheduled to volunteer at the same time as your presentation.
  • You must be a current member of the Society for Marine Mammalogy and registered for the conference (http://www.smmconference.org/) before July 12th prior to completing the volunteer application form.
  • Volunteers will receive shift assignments in September. If there is a conflict with your presentation, please arrange to trade shifts with another volunteer and notify the volunteer coordinator immediately, volunteers@marinemammalscience.org.  All your shifts must be covered to receive reimbursement.

Volunteers, like all conference delegates, will also be able to purchase any extras (e.g. closing celebration tickets or other conference merchandise) using the same method as other delegates via the SMM website.


Volunteer Tasks

Volunteers will wear identifying garments provided by the SMM during their shifts. 

Tasks may include assisting with:

  • Poster Session (including set-up and take-down)
  • Room Monitor at plenary sessions, concurrent sessions and awards ceremony
  • Greetings-Directions-Information
  • Registration Desk
  • Help Desk
  • Merchandise Sales
  • Art Exhibitor Set-up
  • Welcoming Reception/Canadian 150 Event/Closing Celebration
  • Communications Event/Student Affairs Event


How do I Register as a Volunteer?

To be eligible for a volunteer position recieveing conference registration reimbursement you must:  

  • Be a currently registered membersof the Society for Marine Mammalogy. To become a member, click here
  • Complete conference registration prior to submitting an application for a volunteer position. Please note early-bird registration closes on July 12th, 2017.
  • Complete and sign a volunteer application form and return it to Dara Orbach, Volunteer Coordinator, volunteers@marinemammalscience.org. You will receive an email confirming your application has been received within 48 hours. If you do not receive an e-mail acknowledging your application within 48 hours, please send a follow-up e-mail. The conference Planning Committee and Society Board have the right to refuse a volunteer.  

Volunteers not in need of registration reimbursement are welcome to apply or contact the volunteer coordinator at any time.

Thank you for your interest in volunteering! If you have any other questions, please contact Dara Orbach (Volunteer Coordinator) at volunteers@marinemammalscience.org.

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