Volunteer Docent Program

Neue Galerie New York, a museum dedicated to early twentieth century German and Austrian art and design, offers guided tours, which are led by a corps of experienced museum docents who volunteer as ambassadors of the museum. Docent training is extensive, and the tours cover highlights of the special exhibitions and the permanent collections.

The museum welcomes applications to join the volunteer docent team. Volunteer docents provide important support for the museum’s educational mission by leading guided tours and educational experiences that engage visitors with the permanent collection and special exhibitions.

Why volunteer at Neue Galerie New York?

  • Learn about the outstanding collection and exhibitions of one of New York’s finest art museums
  • Pass on your knowledge to individuals interested in art and art education
  • Further your knowledge by attending free lectures and other select events by renowned scholars, artists, and educators
  • Receive discounts at the museum’s shops and café
  • Enjoy complimentary access to the Neue Galerie and other cultural institutions

Position Requirements

Docents cultivate an in-depth understanding of the museum’s collection and its historical context through tour preparation and hands-on experience. The successful candidate desires to establish a long-standing relationship with the Neue Galerie and should intend to volunteer for at least two years following a training period.

The ideal candidate possesses:

  • General knowledge of art historical periods
  • Professional demeanor
  • Ability to work independently on tour preparations following period of training
  • Strong public speaking skills and ability to communicate effectively
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Flexibility to respond to short-notice requests and scheduling changes
  • Basic technology literacy, such as ability and willingness to use email and iPads

Although the need for volunteers’ time fluctuates, the successful candidate must be able to commit to guiding tours at least one to two times a week most months of the year. Tours typically take place at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 3:30 p.m., 4 p.m. or 5 p.m., Wednesday through Monday. Coverage may be required for occasional tours, special events or programs after 6 p.m.

Preferred qualifications:

  • Master’s degree or equivalent experience
  • Interest in the history of art, design and/or architecture; interest in German culture, art and design, and/or history of the early twentieth century a plus
  • Experience leading guided tours or educational experiences
  • Fluency in and ability to lead a guided tour in another language in addition to English (ASL, German, Spanish or French preferred)


In a cover letter, please explain why you would like to volunteer at the Neue Galerie and outline your general availability to participate in training and regular volunteer times. Please email your CV and cover letter to the Neue Galerie's department of Education and Visitor Services ([email protected]).