Visitors with a docent, fourth-floor galleries, Yale Center for British Art, photo by Harold Shapiro

Information Volunteer Program

Information volunteers staff the information desk, welcoming and orienting visitors to the Center and its collections, exhibitions, facilities, and programs. Volunteers answer a wide range of questions about the Center, Yale, and the Greater New Haven area. This service is vital in shaping a positive visitor experience as well as carrying out the mission of informing and educating the public about the Center.

Candidates for the information volunteer position are asked for a minimum one-year commitment. A background in art is welcome but not necessary; a passion for art, an enthusiasm for learning, and an interest in helping the public are crucial. Volunteers must be, at minimum, eighteen years of age.

Volunteer benefits include previews and private tours of Center exhibitions, a discount at the Museum Shop, and special volunteer functions.

For information about volunteer opportunities, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator (ycba.volunteer@yale.edu | +1 203 432 9491).


Docent Program

The Center’s Docent Program was instituted upon the museum’s opening in 1977. A vital part of the Center’s Education department, docents are trained—by Education staff members, Center curators, curators of special exhibitions, and scholars from Yale and across the globe—to offer tours of the collections, special exhibitions, and the building’s architecture. In response to requests from the public, the group has designed more than twenty tours that highlight particular aspects of the Center’s collections. The Education department is happy to work with schools or private groups to customize tours appropriate to specific grade levels, curricula, or particular interests.

Becoming a docent requires a minimum commitment of three years: one year of training followed by two years of service, which includes presenting tours and participating in public programs at the Center. Learning is ongoing: docents meet as a group every Monday morning; these meetings address topics that range from the history of British art to how to create and conduct interactive tours. Individual docents also conduct their own research on special projects.

In addition to the opportunity to study art and art history with renowned scholars, docent benefits include organized study trips, special docent gatherings, and a discount in the Museum Shop.

The Center is not accepting applications at this time, but for further information about the program and docent-led tours, contact Education (ycba.education@yale.edu | +1 203 432 2858).