Volunteers are an essential link between the Freer|Sackler and the public, carrying out the museums’ mission of engaging with visitors and enriching their experiences.
Becoming a Docent at the Freer|Sackler
Docents volunteer to lead tours of adult and school-age (K–12) groups. As they guide visitors through special exhibitions and permanent collections, docents engage visitors in learning primarily about Asian art and culture through active looking at works of art. In preparation, docents receive in-depth training in art history and gallery teaching. They are managed by the Department of Education.
Recruitment for the 2017–18 docent class has concluded. If you wish to apply for the Freer|Sackler docent program, please complete the online application. We will keep your application on file until the next time we are recruiting a docent class.
Program volunteers assist with public events, such as family programs, after-hours events, festivals, gallery talks, and workshops. Each program has specific requirements and training. Volunteer duties may include helping with wayfinding, sharing information, assisting performers, facilitating hands-on activities, managing crowds, and/or ticketing.
Program volunteers commit to a minimum of four programs per year (October to October) and receive regular newsletters from staff, enrichment opportunities, and an invitation to an annual volunteer appreciation event.
Program volunteers are accepted on a rolling basis as needed.
To apply, visit the Smithsonian Volunteer page and complete all requested information for “FS Program Volunteer.” You will receive an email within two weeks with additional information. A signed Program Volunteer Agreement is required to complete the application process and to set your status to active.
Ushers are program volunteers who assist with ticketing and seating for films and performing arts programs. If you’re interested in ushering, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Volunteers Information Specialist Program
We are not currently recruiting volunteer information specialists for the Freer|Sackler.
Volunteer Information Specialists provide information services to museum visitors at the information desks and within the galleries. In addition to welcoming visitors, they supply general information about the museums, their exhibitions and collections, and the Smithsonian in general. They also furnish specific information about daily programs and events, and they answer visitor questions. They give directions, make connections to places and events around the Smithsonian, ignite curiosity, and help to ensure visitors have a positive experience at the Freer|Sackler.
To learn more about becoming a Volunteer Information Specialist, please visit the Smithsonian Volunteer Opportunities page.