Tram Driver Interpreter - Temporary

Lisle, IL
Part Time

The Morton Arboretum is a world-renowned nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting and growing trees locally and globally. We are seeking an individual to join our team to provide tours of our grounds to varying groups of visitors. To be successful in this position, the candidate will need to be comfortable dealing with the public and speaking in front of groups of up to 50 people, well-organized, and enjoy collaborating with colleagues within the department and across the institution. Bilingual English/Spanish is a plus. You’ll be part of a great team working together to make the Arboretum exceptional.

Position Summary: Transport and narrate for visitors on a 48-passenger, open-air tram on designated routes throughout the Arboretum, or narrate and direct tours for groups aboard visitor-provided vehicles. Provide interpretation of The Morton Arboretum and its mission, highlighting collections, seasonal elements, Arboretum programs, and other highlights. Act as an ambassador of the Arboretum, greeting visitors, responding to inquiries, and helping provide positive experiences.  

Essential Functions: 

  • Ensure safe functioning of equipment: Pick-up tram at garage, complete pre-tour checklist, move tram to departure location, return after tour, maintain cleanliness of tram by sweeping floor and dusting seats as needed throughout the day. Record tram operation problems and notify appropriate staff promptly.
  • Learn and master content to provide narrated tours for all seasons and multiple routes for visitors of all ages. Tram tours are not scripted and drivers are required to tailor each tour to fit the circumstances of the day. Regularly review updated information provided by supervisor. 
  • Educate and entertain passengers with narration that highlights collections, grounds, seasonal points of interest, Morton family history, landscape features, Arboretum programs and membership.
  • Greet passengers, review safety protocols, and ensure passenger safety during tour. Drivers are required to maintain and update First Aid certification and follow Arboretum safety and emergency protocols. Assist passengers in boarding and disembarking from vehicle if necessary. Operate handicapped lift/ramp as necessary and secure wheelchair passengers.
  • Participate in ongoing training opportunities. 
  • Demonstrate alignment with the Arboretum’s employee core values to be inclusive, take ownership, work together, keep learning, and make the Arboretum exceptional.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Qualifications: High school diploma or equivalent required. Additional education of two or more years of college is preferred. Customer-oriented, safety-conscious, able to work independently, comfortable with speaking in front of a group and willing to work as part of a team. Prior experience driving large transport vehicles and some knowledge of natural science and/or horticulture is preferred. Excellent communication skills, professional demeanor, and articulate verbal presentation with a strong command of the English language required, bilingual preferred (Spanish/English). Must be at least 18 years of age. Must become certified and maintain certification in First Aid and CPR (classes provided). Must possess a valid driver’s license, which is subject to insurability and an annual Motor Vehicle Record (MVR) report.  Must be able to obtain and maintain insurability by Arboretum's insurance carrier by successfully completing a physical examination at defined intervals. Must present professional image to the public by following the Tram Driver Interpreter dress code.   

Success Factors: Customer service oriented individual who is able to relate effectively with people of various backgrounds and ages. Teamwork, safety-consciousness, a friendly demeanor, excellent communication skills, and adaptability to various audiences and scheduling needs.  Ability to discern and adapt to the needs and interests of others, and make sound judgments based on the environment. Interest in and ability to learn about The Morton Arboretum’s plant collections, grounds, programs, and history.

Physical Demands and Work Environment: The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.  Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform these essential functions.

  • Physical Demands: Requires some physical activity:  limited lifting (up to 50 lbs.), physically able to climb aboard vehicle, assist passengers boarding the tram, and passengers with disabilities by operating accessible lift/ramp and pushing visitors seated in a wheelchair.  
  • Work Environment: Work is performed primarily outdoors, on an open-air 48-passenger tram.
  • Equipment: Tram, microphone/on-board audio system, accessible lift/ramp, two-way radio, First Aid supplies, computer.
  • Schedule: The tram operates 7-days a week from April through October, so flexibility in scheduling is essential. Weekend and some evening work required.

The hiring rate for this position is $20.00/hour

The Morton Arboretum is a champion for diversity, supporting a culture of inclusion that attracts, inspires, and engages people to achieve success. The Arboretum is committed to hire and develop employees based on job-related qualifications irrespective of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, or veteran status. To increase diversity in professions related to the public garden realm, we encourage applications from underrepresented minorities, persons with disabilities, and veterans.  

The Morton Arboretum is dedicated to complying with our obligations as an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All applicants are guaranteed equal consideration for employment.  

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