Stanley Docent Program

The docent application process is currently inactive. We will begin recruiting a docent class in April 2022 and start training in August 2022. If you have any questions about the docent program or would like to be put on the list for the docent training, call or email Joshua Siefken (319-384-1977, joshua-siefken@uiowa.edu) Please leave a message if your call goes to voicemail.

Museum docents are ambassadors to the community and will play an important role in this new era of our institution. We are seeking enthusiastic, qualified individuals to engage K–12 audiences and the community.

Desired Qualifications:

The Stanley seeks individuals who appreciate diverse viewpoints and are excited to, teach, learn and engage the community. Formal or informal experience teaching K–12 students is required. A background in studio art or art history is helpful, but not mandatory.

Training:

Prospective docents must attend bimonthly training sessions for a period of one year. Trainings will consist of meetings and discussions with Stanley staff about art history, educational theory, world history, managing group tours, and speaking to public audiences. Trainees will also have opportunities to give practice tours and workshop ideas with each other. Prospective docents who complete the one-year training program will then graduate to docent. Virtual versus in-person training will be determined based on recommendations by the Center for Disease Control and the University of Iowa. We are dedicated to ensuring the safety of docents in training and guests at the Stanley Museum of Art.

Time Commitment:

We ask our new docents for a three-year commitment, including one year of training and two years as active docents. During the first year, prospective docents must attend all scheduled meetings and training sessions to graduate to docent. Once training has been completed, docents are expected to give an average of three tours per month, as well as attend the monthly meeting and supplemental training sessions.

Responsibilities:

As a vital part of the visitor experience at the Stanley Museum of Art, a docent’s most important role is to lead interactive tours for our diverse museum audience. Docents are also expected to attend all meetings and training sessions, and to continue to explore and familiarize themselves with the Stanley’s expansive collection. Additional volunteer opportunities at special events will also be available to docents. 

Benefits:

Becoming a docent connects you to your community, the museum, and the University of Iowa. Not only will you join a cohort of inspiring and community-engaged peers, but you will also receive training and behind-the-scenes information about the museum and its global collection of art. Docents will meet the museum staff and preview upcoming exhibitions with the curators. At the end of the training period, the museum will celebrate its new class of docents with a graduation ceremony at the annual docent lunch.

 Application Process:

The docent application process is currently inactive. We will begin recruiting a docent class in April 2022 and start training in August 2022. If you have any questions about the docent program or would like to be put on the list for the docent training, call or email Joshua Siefken (319-384-1977, joshua-siefken@uiowa.edu) Please leave a message if your call goes to voicemail.