Posted: Jul 3, 2024

Museum Guide

Salary: $15.00 Hourly
Application Deadline: N/A


First conceived by world-renowned architect Mies van der Rohe in 1945 and completed in 1951, the Edith Farnsworth House is an icon of modern architecture and continues to inspire artists and designers around the world. Built as a country retreat for Dr. Edith Farnsworth, the house is a building of white-painted steel and glass, which stands in striking contrast to its naturalistic setting. Located in a floodplain landscape along the Fox River, the setting is integral to Mies van der Rohe's aesthetic conception and continues to be managed and developed as the house and site are restored and interpreted.


The Museum Guide serves as an informed and friendly ambassador for the site and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, providing individual or groups tours to interpret the history of the site, its buildings and grounds, and placing them in historical and contemporary context for the visitor.


  • Interpret the site, its architecture, landscape, and/ or artifacts through interactive experiential tours that encourage visitors to better understand and appreciate the site within historical and contemporary contexts.
  • Engage visitors in active observation, discussion and synthesis during guided tours.
  • Respond to different groups of visitors (adults, school children, families) by varying tour content and techniques as appropriate.
  • Convey the mission of the individual site and the National Trust for Historic Preservation, including announcing current initiatives and upcoming programs and events.
  • Provide exceptional customer service to all site guests and interact positively and professionally with site colleagues.
  • Assist in monitoring collections security (buildings, objects, grounds) and visitor safety, responding calmly and professional to emergencies and promptly notifying supervisor of incidents or unsafe conditions.
  • Attend all required in-service training sessions and contribute insights drawn from tour experiences and visitor response. Participate actively in training programs and other opportunities to expand site knowledge and strengthen interpretive skills.
  • Assist as needed with visitor services and operations, including visitor orientation, answering phones, shop retail and ticket sales.
  • Assist as needed with educational activities, special events and other additional duties and responsibilities.


  • Some experience in public speaking, presenting educational or promotional information to the public, or other customer service role. Previous experience as an educator, guide, tour leader or related role preferred; experience in a museum or historic or cultural setting a plus.
  • Knowledge of and enthusiasm for history, architecture or other cultural topics related to the site preferred.
  • Effective and engaging presentation skills. Excellent verbal and written communication skills, with ability to speak and read English fluently. Bi-lingual fluency (in English and Spanish or other language) a plus.
  • Demonstrated ability to engage effectively with culturally diverse audiences, and audiences of varying age.
  • Basic problem solving skills, including issue identification and prioritization.
  • Ability to adapt and be flexible in a dynamic work environment
  • Ability to continually develop skills related to use of rapidly changing technology and communications best practices.
  • Entrepreneurial spirit and skill set a plus.
  • Ability to work weekends holidays evenings
  • Ability to work outdoors in varying weather conditions.
  • Minimum physical requirements include but are not limited to: Ability to stand for periods up to 90 minutes; walk over uneven terrain; climb stairs;
  • BA or equivalent work experience required; studies in history, architecture or other topics related to specific site programs preferred.


This is a part time, non-exempt, seasonal position, working 10-18 hours/week.

Pay Rate: $15.00 per hour