Fairchild STEMlab Bus Volunteers Wanted!

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Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

  • 3 people are interested

Beginning in 2015, Fairchild, in partnership with Miami-Dade County Public Schools and The University of Miami School of Architecture, Design Build Program, worked to transform an ADA-accessible, decommissioned yellow school bus into STEMLab - a state-of-the-art mobile botanical micropropgration laboratory. The lab was designed to provide the opportunity for middle schools students to actively contribute to Fairchild’s The Million Orchid Project by doing similar lab based techniques that our scientists do here at the Garden. Since schools don’t typically have the specialized equipment to conduct this research, we decided to bring it to them.

This fully functioning botany lab travels to South Florida middle schools, providing students with an opportunity to actively participate in meaningful STEM research with local conservation implications. By pairing with the award-winning The Fairchild Challenge and The Million Orchid Project, we are making this specialized lab equipment available to middle schools in the school district, teaching and reinforcing concepts in biology, chemistry, and environmental science. At the same time, the STEMLab will support the reintroduction of endangered orchid species throughout our region.

Volunteers are needed to help conduct programs and be a part of this project!

Volunteers ideally would be trained between now and September 10 th, and would get to choose the dates or locations when they would like to volunteer. Typically we need 2 volunteers per program. Program run Tuesday - Thursday from September 10 - November 19 , 9:00 am - 1:00 pm. Volunteers who would like to go but don’t want to drive to the schools can meet staff at the Garden and ride with him. Otherwise they can meet staff there.

Training will take just a few hours max.

Please reach out to jpeterson@fairchildgarden.org for more information or if you are interested in joining!

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About Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden


10901 Old Cutler Road, Miami, FL 33156, US

Mission Statement

Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden's mission is to save tropical plant diversity by exploring, explaining and conserving the world of tropical plants; fundamental to this task is inspiring a greater knowledge and love for plants and gardening so that all can enjoy the beauty and bounty of the tropical world.


Founded in 1938 on an 83 acre site south of Miami, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden gets it name from one of the most famous plant explorers in history, David Fairchild (1869-1954). Fairchild was known for traveling the world in search of useful plants, but he was also an educator and a renowned scientist. At the age of 22, he created the Section of Foreign Seed and Plant Introduction of the United States Department of Agriculture, and for the next 37 years he traveled the world in search of plants of potential use to the American people. Fairchild visited every continent in the world (except Antarctica) and brought back hundreds of important plants, including mangos, alfalfa, nectarines, dates, cotton, bamboos, and the flowering cherry trees that grace Washington D.C.

Dr. Fairchild retired to Miami in 1935 and joined a group of passionate plant collectors and horticulturists, including retired accountant Col. Robert H. Montgomery, environmentalist Marjory Stoneman Douglas, County Commisioner Charles Crandon, and landscape architect William Lyman Phillips who were all interested in bringing a one of a kind botanic garden to South Florida. In 1938, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden opened its 83 acres to the public for the first time.

Today, Fairchild is one of the premier conservation and education-based gardens in the world and recognized leader in both Florida and international conservation. Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden emphasizes the expansion of plant knowledge through publications, education programs, and research in taxonomy, floristics, conservation biology and ethno-botany. Fairchild plays many roles, including museum, laboratory, learning center and conservation research facility, but it's greatest role is protecting biodiversity, which the garden's scientists, staff, and volunteers all contribute to on a daily basis. In 2012, Fairchild became the home of the American Orchid Society, and opened the state-of-the-art DiMare Science Village, covering more than 25,000 square feet and featuring five buildings including The Clinton Family Conservatory's Wings of the Tropics Exhibit, Glass House Cafe, Windows to the Tropics Conservatory, The Whitman Tropical Fruit Pavilion and the Kushlan Tropical Plant Science Institute.


Wed Jan 01, 2020 - Fri May 15, 2020
09:00 AM - 01:00 PM  


10901 Old Cutler RoadMiami, FL 33156




  • People 55+


  • Background Check
  • Must be at least 16
  • Orientation or Training
  • Volunteers can choose between a regular shift or filling in spots as they go!
  • Must go through training, pass a background check, be interviewed, and sign our policies and procedures!

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