This week on the blog (in honor of National Volunteer Week): Find out what motivates Wexner Center volunteers in a weeklong series of stories. You might just want to join in the camaraderie, and you can find out how on the volunteer page of wexarts.org. Please also join us in thanking all the Wexner Center's volunteer ushers, community docents, and other volunteers for sharing their time and talents with us, during National Volunteer Week, April 27–May 3, 2008 and all year long.
The first story comes from docent Jean Mervis:
Invigorating, inspiring, educationalâ€¦these are just some of the words I could use to describe the National Docent Symposium, which I was privileged to attend in beautiful Phoenix, Arizona, in April 2007. About 500 docents from all over the country arrived in Phoenix for the three-day event. The conference included speakers, panel presentations, round table discussions, and trips to museums throughout the areaâ€”all organized by volunteer docents.
The experience was great. I was surprised to hear the similar issues and concerns that we all face. Whether participating at a round table discussion on challenging issues or listening to a speaker suggest that the most engaging tour is one that spontaneously customizes itself to the needs of its visitors, the conference was a great time to reflect on what we do at the Wexner Center. It also reminded me of things we sometimes forget to do as we conduct our tours and greet our visitors. I also have to say that I have even more appreciation for our knowledgeable and enthusiastic education and curatorial staffâ€”all Wexner Center staffâ€”who never fail to teach and inspire us with each new exhibition. Not all volunteers are as fortunate.
I give my thanks to the Wexner Center education staff for making it possible for me to attend this inspirational symposium. I'm very proud to be a docent at the Wexner Center for the Arts.