NMWA volunteers and docents assist museum staff and help carry out our mission by interacting with visitors and serving as welcoming representatives of the museum.

This dedicated corps of well-trained volunteers and docents is one of the museum’s most valuable resources.

Department Volunteers

Department volunteers hold weekday or weekend positions. Time commitments vary depending on the demands of the particular department and position.

We are not recruiting new Department Volunteers at this time, but please check back regularly for updates and future opportunities.


Docents give public tours of the collection and exhibitions to adult, school, and youth groups. Following their initial eight-month training, docents enjoy ongoing learning opportunities from educators, curators, and artists. Docents commit to at least two years, providing 100 hours of service during weekdays or 50 hours of service during weekends per year.

We are not recruiting new Docents at this time, but please check back regularly for updates and future opportunities.

Visitor Experience Volunteers

Visitor Experience Volunteers greet and orient visitors to the museum and provide information regarding the museum’s history, collection, and temporary exhibitions. These volunteers are assigned to a regular shift (once during the week or on alternating weekends) lasting 2.5–3.5 hours. Training as a Visitor Service Volunteer is a prerequisite for anyone interested becoming a docent.

Visitor Experience applications are accepted on an as-needed basis.

Specific Duties:

  • Greet visitors and orient them to the building, current exhibitions, and services, including the Museum Shop and the Mezzanine Café
  • Answer questions regarding the history of the museum and building, as well as collection- and exhibition-related questions
  • Ensure gallery guides, See For Yourself cards, and other museum publications are available for visitor use

Required Qualifications:

  • Strong customer service interest, welcoming demeanor, and ability to foster meaningful connections with visitors
  • Experience working with diverse groups and personalities, including children, senior citizens, and persons with disabilities
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Enthusiastic team player who adapts easily to a rapidly changing environment
  • Attention to detail, punctuality, flexibility, initiative, patience, and professionalism
  • Must have email access to ensure timely exchange of work-related information
  • Must be able to speak English fluently—bilingual candidates are encouraged to apply

Apply now

Benefits for Active Volunteers (who are fulfilling their service requirements):

  • Education Benefits: Volunteers are invited to attend docent professional development sessions and select educational programs, including special tours of NMWA exhibitions and of other local cultural institutions. They will also have free access to many museums locally and around the country when they present museum ID
  • Library Benefits: Volunteers may use the NMWA Betty Boyd Dettre Library and Research Center while at the museum. Volunteers may borrow books and resource materials from the Education Department Library with permission of the Assistant Educator
  • Social Benefits and Special Events: NMWA volunteers enjoy rewarding experiences welcoming, guiding, and assisting visitors, as well as a collegial interaction with staff members and colleagues. Volunteers receive invitations to NMWA-sponsored public programs, such as lectures, films, literary events, selected exhibition openings, and the annual Volunteer Appreciation event
  • Shop and Café Discounts: Volunteers are eligible for a 25% discount (cannot be combined with other discounts or specials) in the Museum Shop and a 10% discount in the Mezzanine Café
  • Guest Passes: Each year, volunteers receive ten free guest passes for museum admission