Docent Program (2013-2014)


In the Name of Poetry! We're Seeking New Docents to Join Our Fun Community!

The University of Arizona Poetry Center seeks enthusiastic individuals to serve in its vibrant docent program. Please read through the information and qualifications listed below. You can also find more information about the program and a downloadable application here.

Mission Statement

Poetry Center docents provide groups and institutions with a positive and engaging introduction to the Poetry Center as a living archive. Docents encourage a love of language and advance a positive perception of poetry.

Vision Statement

Promote the living spirit of poetry as something that can heal, enrich, inspire, and sustain.
Serve as ambassadors of poetry and the Poetry Center.



Potential docents should feel comfortable with public speaking, leading discussions, and facilitating short activities with a variety of age ranges. While no prior experience with poetry is necessary, an interest in learning more about poetry and a sense of the value of public arts programming is required.

Job Duties and Responsibilities

Job responsibilities include planning, leading, and assisting with field trip and adult building tours, including tours of special exhibits; staffing informational booths at local events like the Tucson Festival of Books; overseeing the Poetry Center front desk on select Saturdays; attending speaking engagements; book sales at Poetry Center readings; and other ancillary related tasks. Docents will be required to keep current on Poetry Center exhibits through materials provided to them by library staff and incorporate these materials into tours.

Required Training

New docents are required to attend a seven-week course: "A History of the Poetry Center" is taught by returning docents and run through the Poetry Center’s Classes and Workshops program. The dates and times for the course in 2013 year will be held the following Tuesday evenings, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.: September 10, 17, and 24, and October 1, 8, 15, and 22. New docents will shadow staff and experienced docents as they gain a thorough knowledge of the Poetry Center's history, its current programs, and library resources. 

All docents meet once a month September through April for continued training, poetry discussions, visits from special guests, and discussion groups that will help prepare members to create and lead their own tours, speaking engagements and other activities. Monthly docent meetings are held the second Thursday of every month (with the exception of April's meeting) from 12:30 - 3:00 p.m. The meeting dates for 2013-2014 are: September 12, October 10, November 14, December 12, January 9, February 13, March 13, and April 17. 

Please note: A special training meeting for our K-12 Field Trip Program will take place on Friday, August 30. New and returning docents are required to be present for this training if they are interested in leading field trip tours. 

Time Commitment

Poetry Center requires that docents commit to the program for 1 ½ years donating 10 hours per month to staffing Poetry Center programs.

Application Process

Interviews for the 2012-2013 season will be reviewed and accepted until July 26st, 2013. Click here to download the application.


Docents receive all the benefits extended to Poetry Center volunteers, and then some:

•  30% discount on all Poetry Center classes and workshops
•  Continuing Education
•  Friendship and camaraderie
•  Name badge recognition for hours of service
•  Annual field trip

Questions? Please contact Julie Lauterbach-Colby: // (520) 626-4738 

To watch a video slideshow from our 2012-2013 Name Badge Ceremony, please click here.

Arizona Board of Regents