FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is your application process like?
You apply online using the application that is found at this link. After submitting your online application it will be reviewed by the Public Education and Outreach Department staff and you will be called to schedule an in-person interview. We conduct interviews on the last Tuesday of each month. Two staff members will be present and the interview will last for approximately 30 minutes. After your interview the staff will review your interests and skills. If there is a current opening that is a good match, you will receive a call to schedule your training. If there is not a current opening that is a match with your interests and skills we will keep you resume and application on file for one year.
Can I apply online?
Yes, you can apply online. Click on the link provided to fill out the application.
How long is the training and when does it take place?
An ongoing independent study program is always available to introduce new volunteers to the Oriental Institute and its areas of research. The independent study program usually takes from 3 to 6 months. For volunteers interested in leading tours and becoming a docent, an 8-week structured training session will begin in the fall. Participants will receive an introduction to the history of the Oriental Institute and its collections through lectures and hands on in-gallery workshops, discussions and explorations of exhibitions. Additionally the training will introduce proper tour techniques and methods to docent trainees providing them with a solid background and framework for giving tours. Outside of class, trainees will be expected to read additional materials provided by the staff. These docent trainings will be conducted on Mondays and some Saturdays for eight (8) weeks in the fall.
Do I need a special background in order to apply?
Our volunteers come from all walks of life, many having little to no previous formal education on the subject of the ancient Near East. We are looking for volunteers with positive energy, flexibility, great customer service and an enthusiasm for life-long learning.
Is there a cost to become a volunteer?
There are no costs for training materials. We do ask that all our volunteers become Oriental Institute members at the basic membership level $50. This membership offers you discounts at the gift shop and for non-credit courses offered through the Oriental Institute. Membership also provides you with our quarterly member's newsletter News & Notes, which will keep you informed of the latest research and work conducted by our faculty and research associates.
How large are the tour groups and what are their age levels?
We provide tours for visitors of all ages. During the school year we are particularly busy with tours for children (8-18) years of age. Groups can vary in size, but for the optimum museum experience, we try to limit the numbers to between 10-15 people per group.
What about Parking?
For a small hourly fee, parking is available in the parking garage located at 55th and Ellis. Additionally there is free street parking on campus. Volunteers who complete the training program and meet certain levels of volunteer hours are eligible for a parking pass which entitles them to free parking in the lot adjacent to the Oriental Institute.
Is there a minimum age requirement to become a volunteer?
Applicants must be at least 18 years of age.
What special benefits or perks are offered to your volunteers?
As an Oriental Institute volunteer, you will have the opportunity to attend field trips, enjoy volunteer appreciation events, network with national and international volunteer organizations, attend lectures by world-renowned scholars on the ancient Near East, and receive a preferred rate on non-credit courses offered through the Institute and a discount at The Suq gift shop.
Revised: February 8, 2013