The next Docent Training Class has been selected. We'll accept applications again in the future. Thank you for your interest!
Docents provide high-quality support for the Folger’s many educational outreach programs, including:
- School Visits: Docents offer specially scheduled presentations for elementary and secondary school students, using hands-on teaching materials and theater activities.
- Walk-in tours: Docents conduct visitor tours Monday-Friday at 11am and 3pm, and on Saturdays at 11am and 1pm.
- Information desk: Docents greet visitors to the Folger and introduce them to its facilities.
- Outreach programs: Docents work with selected classes in DC public schools and communities to generate interest in and enthusiasm for Shakespeare and his culture.
- Annual Children and Secondary School Shakespeare Festivals: Docents help to plan and run these two highly successful festivals, where students have a chance to perform for one another and for the general public in the Folger’s Elizabethan Theatre.
- Shakespeare’s Birthday Open House: Docents help to plan the annual celebration of Shakespeare’s birthday, developing and supervising activities for children.
A B.A. is preferred but not required. Docents should be comfortable working with people of all ages, backgrounds, and levels of ability. All docents must complete a thirty-to-forty-hour training program.
A two-year commitment is required with a minimum of fifty service hours per year. Teaching must comprise at least thirty of those hours. Docents must also observe one tour and attend two in-service trainings per year. Docents can work any day of the week that the Folger is open, although weekday help is particularly needed.
The training course, taught by docents, library staff and scholars, includes an introduction to the Library and its collections; classes on politics, literature, and daily life in Elizabethan England; and lectures on Shakespeare’s theater, work, and life. Educational methods—the dynamics of communicating meaningfully with a group—are an integral part of the program. Continuing in-service training is also provided.
The Folger offers docents discounted tickets to Folger Theatre performances, literary readings, concerts by the Folger Consort, and other public programs, as well as a discount in the Gift Shop. Docents are also invited to free lectures and scholarly colloquia. The intangible rewards are great as well: docents have the opportunity to meet visitors from all over the Washington area and, indeed, all over the world. They create, witness, and share in the delight of hundreds of children and adults who discover Shakespeare through the Folger’s educational programs.
For more information about volunteering with the Folger Shakespeare Library docent program, please contact Carol Ann Lloyd Stanger at email@example.com.
We love to hear feedback from visitors! To share about your Folger visitor experience, please contact Danielle Drakes at (202) 675-0365 or firstname.lastname@example.org.