Summer Youth Docent Program

Have a blast in the past this summer! Join the Youth Docent Program at the Washington State History Museum. 

July 9 - August 1, 2019, for youth entering grades 8-11.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: June 15, 2019. Applications must be postmarked no later than 6/15/2019. Space is limited. Apply early. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. 

See Tacoma Report's 2017 interview with Youth Docents at the History Museum, here.

“We are not makers of history. We are made by history.”  - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Program Description

THIS SUMMER, immerse yourself in the world of the museum! You’ll discover how exhibits are created. You’ll delve into Washington state history. You’ll visit other museums. You’ll welcome visitors and share information about artifacts.But you’ll take away much more than that. You’ll learn valuable life skills: 

  • Gain volunteer experience to prepare you for your first, or next job. 
  • Develop the art of working with others: supervisors, team members, and the general public.
  • Strengthen your research abilities.  
  • Receive direct mentoring from experienced museum professionals. 

Upon successful graduation from the program, you will be eligible to apply for regular volunteering opportunities for the Washington State History Museum. 

Time Commitment 

Minimum 42 hrs. (26 hours training, 16 hours volunteer service)

  • Part One: Mandatory Orientation and Training, 3 days: July 9-11
  • Part Two: Weekly training and volunteer shifts: approximately10 hours/week


Two days per week, commencing Tuesday, July 16. Each week will include one training day and one volunteer shift. You will also complete one Special Event volunteer shift prior to September 3. Limited absences for family vacation permitted, with supervisor’s prior permission.


Open to youth entering school grades 8, 9, 10, or 11 in Fall, 2019.* Youth entering grade 12 will be considered on a case by case basis.

*The Washington State Historical Society is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified candidates,
regardless of sex, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual orientation, or veteran status are encouraged to


There is a program fee of $45.00 to partially cover the direct cost of program activities and supplies. Fee waivers are available, based on financial need. The Washington State Historical Society covers all staff
and facility costs, plus a percentage of the direct cost of activities and supplies.

2017 youth docents interview with TV Tacoma

Application Requirements:

Application Requirements

  • Submit a Program Application.
  • Provide parent/guardian's written permission to participate in the program.
  • Please note, accepted applicants will be required to pass a WSHS background check.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Applications must be delivered to the museum to the attention of Susan Hesselgrave, or postmarked no later than June 15, 2019. Space is limited. Apply early. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis through June 15.

Are you looking for academic credit or community service?

These are options that must be arranged directly with your school. Be sure and arrange this BEFORE the
start of your program.

  • ACADEMIC CREDIT: If your school permits academic credit for extra‐curricular activities, we will be happy to provide a program description and verify your participation in our program, when completed. You are responsible for any paperwork/permissions required by your school.
  • COMMUNITY SERVICE: We will be happy to verify your participation and hours served, when completed.  

Download Program Application and FAQ here.

2017 docents with Jennifer