volunteer Office of Visitor Engagement: Docent Volunteer Program

  • General Website: http://www.loc.gov/visit/volunteer/
  • Program Website: http://www.loc.gov/visit/volunteer/docent-application/
  • Hosting Service Unit: National & International Outreach
  • Program Contact: [email protected]
  • Interests/Areas of Study: Humanities, Art and Culture; Communications; Public relations
  • Citizenship: Inquire Within
  • Application Period: Ongoing
  • Application Notes: Application Period: October of current year. January 1 – September 15 of current year. See program website above for further information on application process and/or email the program contact for further information on application process.
  • Compensation: Non-paid
  • Academic Credit: No Credit
  • Available Benefits: LC Internal Discounts
  • Program Duration: Long-term. Commitment of 3 years; Mandatory training of 16 weeks: Tuesday after Labor day - December; must pass qualifying tour.
  • Qualifications: Experience with Public; Customer Service; Must be available for 16 week training
  • Frequently Asked Questions

The Office of Visitor Engagement Docent Volunteers give 45 minute tours of the Thomas Jefferson Building’s art, architecture, and history. Docents are prepared through an extensive 16-week training program designed to equip volunteer docents with the information and skills necessary to lead tours of the Library's historic Thomas Jefferson building. The classes are presented by Library staff as well as experts from outside the Library. The curriculum covers all aspects of the Library and prepares docents to give interesting and informative tours. The curriculum focuses on the Library’s past, present and future; its organization and infrastructure; its curatorial divisions and programs; the care and use of its collections; and the art and architecture of the Thomas Jefferson Building. Classes are conducted twice weekly, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Upon completion of the classroom training, each docent-in-training will give a qualifying tour of the Thomas Jefferson Building. After qualification, docents are expected to commit to a weekly half-day shift for a period of three years (including the training).