Student Guide Program

Student Guide Program Spring 2024

Who are we? Student Guides at the Davis are current Wellesley College students who are committed to sharing the Davis’s rich permanent collection and special exhibitions with local K-12 students, adults, and the general public.

What do we do? Student Guides research, develop, and lead their own tours on special exhibitions and the permanent collection, using inquiry-based touring strategies to facilitate visitors’ experiences with art.  These touring strategies encourage extended looking at and deeper thinking about objects, as well as promote meaningful visitor interactions.  Student Guides also assist with other public programs at the Davis, such as Family Day and Orientation.

Why do we do it? Students join the Student Guide program because they are passionate about sharing art with others and enthusiastic about the Davis.  Participation in the Student Guide program has many other benefits, including:

  • Behind-the-scenes experiences with Davis Museum curators and staff
  • Excellent resume building opportunity and preparation for arts, museum, and education careers
  • Training and teaching experience in informal and object-based learning
  • Fun and interesting way to meet fellow students passionate about the arts

How do we do it? Student Guides receive regular training on the collection, temporary exhibitions, and touring strategies from Davis Museum curators and staff. 

Student Guides in the first year of the program will participate in both yearlong basic training and on-going special exhibitions training.   At the end of the first semester, new Student Guides are required to research and present an object from the permanent collection to their peers.  During the second semester, new Student Guides will shadow tours, and training will culminate in the presentation of a 45-minute long practice tour to peers.

Returning Student Guides will lead tours, facilitate programs as needed, and attend on-going special exhibitions training.

Beginning Spring 2024 Student Guides will be paid for training, tour preparation, and leading tours, according to the following pay scale:

  • First year: $15.00/hr
  • Second year: $15.50/hr
  • Third year: $16.00/hr
  • Fourth year: $16.50/hr

Student Guides will be paid for 1.5 hours of preparation time per tour to include both research and practice in the galleries.   Student Guides will also be paid 1.5 hours to lead a tour.  

Both interested and returning students must apply to participate in the program.  Interviews for selected applicants will begin in December.

When do we do it? New Student Guides participate in weekly training sessions during the academic year.  Returning Guides participate in on-going training sessions twice per month during the academic year.  Training times and days TBD.  Guides are also encouraged to attend optional unpaid training opportunities such as gallery talks and lectures when available.  

Public and school tour requests are posted to Google Doc Sign-Up Sheet and are emailed to the “Student Guides at the Davis” Google group.  Guides are asked to sign up for tours based on their availability.  

Tours take place during Davis open hours on weekdays: Tuesday – Friday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.  Tour guides may be contacted to give tours outside of that schedule on an as-needed basis.

Questions? Contact Dr. Semente, Curator of Education and Public Programs at the Davis: T: 781.283.2045.