Junior Docent Program - CSPM

Junior Docent Program

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have adapted the 2020 Junior Docent program. Please consider if the outlined changes will work for students and their families before submitting an application. Applications are due Saturday, May 9 by 5:00 p.m.
Junior Docents of Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum

Enthusiastic students entering grades 6th-12th are invited to apply for the summer Junior Docent program. Junior Docents gain a better understanding of their community’s history, develop important communication and public speaking skills, and meet other students with a passion for history. The program helps young people build confidence and learn important skills for their future.

Each week of the 10-week program we will highlight a regional history topic (i.e. Tuberculosis) and a museum-field theme (i.e. exhibit development). Students will have guiding questions and activities to complete each week in preparation for the digital session with museum staff members. We will explore history, science, art, collections management, the research process, exhibit design, and so much more!

Placement in the Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum Junior Docent program is selective and is dependent on several factors including strength of interview, age, maturity, interest, and scheduling availability. Past participation in the Junior Docent program does not guarantee acceptance into this year’s program.

Program Changes for Summer 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has left us with many unknowns. We are not sure when the Museum will open to the public, but we think that will happen by around June 1. We are also not sure how the new reality of social distancing will impact Museum operations once we open. Health and safety are our highest priorities for Junior Docents and their families and we will follow the guidelines of the El Paso County Health Department. With so many unknowns we have decided to proceed with the plan outlined below.

INTERVIEWS

Interviews are an essential component of this program. Not only do we get a chance to get to know you but you also get the valuable experience of participating in an interview. All interviews will be conducted on Saturday, May 16 between 12pm and 5pm using Zoom or WebEx. Once we receive your application we will confirm your interview time. 

  1. We also know the value of getting the support of a teacher, coach, supervisor, etc. and having them complete a recommendation form for you. Please make sure that this is done by May 15. If you are having issues with this, please let us know.
  2. We will not charge a program fee this summer. If you would like information on how to contribute the Museum and our mission please visit our “Support” site.

DIGITAL PROGRAMMING

For now, we are planning to conduct the majority of the program online. We are hoping to find ways to engage students at the museum, but are not sure when and how we can do this just yet. We will use the Zoom or WebEx platforms to meet weekly. Once we know who is participating we will decide on what day and time works best for everyone. Weekly meetings will include the following:

  • “Behind the scenes” sessions and activities on regional history, museum work, and museum interpretation/education (We’ll hear from many Museum staff members about their exciting work!)
  • Conducting research projects for the COS@150 exhibit
  • Planning Junior Docent’s National History Day projects
  • Presentations from Junior Docents on different topics (practice interpretation)
  • “Getting to know you” and other fun sessions
  • We hope to safely create at least one in-person interpretive opportunity at the museum
  • We also hope to schedule research sessions for each student in our Starsmore Center for Local History
  • The sessions will focus on growing in our knowledge of regional history, connecting with like-minded peers, and improving our communication skills

EXPECTATIONS

If a student commits to the program we do expect that they will fully participate. This will include digitally attending the weekly sessions, completing projects, and following program guidelines. We know that for some students this may not work. Please chat with your families to decide if this is a good fit.

  • A device that will allow students to participate in online sessions is needed for this program (laptop, tablet, smart phone, etc.). If your family does not have access to a device, please let us know and we’ll see what we can do to help.

Thank you again for your interest. We are looking forward to this summer and appreciate your enthusiasm and creativity as we take on this unique challenge. 

2020 Junior Docent Program

Important Dates

  • Saturday, May 9: Applications are due by 5:00 p.m.
  • Friday, May 15: Recommendation Forms are due
  • Saturday, May 16: Digital Interviews (using the Zoom platform). *We will confirm your interview time after  applications are received.
  • Saturday, May 30, 10am-Noon: Digital Orientation and Training  (one parent/guardian is required to join us for the first part of the meeting)
  • We will “meet” on Zoom weekly. Dates and times will be determined once we have selected the 2020 Junior Docent class. 
  • In-person activities will also be scheduled as the summer progresses.

Expectations & Requirements

All students accepted to the program are required to:

  • Complete a CERVIS account with the City of Colorado Springs
  • Attend a digital orientation and training with one parent/guardian (time/date TBD)
  • There is no fee to participate in this summer’s program
    • Are you interested in supporting the mission of the Museum? Visit our “Ways to Give” page
  • Participate  in all digital sessions (time/dates TBD)
    • Please let us know in advance if you cannot make a session. We will have ways to make-up any missed activities. We expect that Junior Docents and parent/guardians will plan according to their summer schedules and will honor their program commitments. Failure to honor this expectation can result in dismissal from the program.
  • Using their online CERVIS account, families will track participation hours for their Junior Docents. 
  • Junior Docents are also required to volunteer at least for two museum programs during the 2020-2021 school year.

Questions? Call or email Meg Poole, Program Coordinator at 719-385-5631 or meg.poole@coloradosprings.gov

The Junior Docent Program is sponsored by

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“This is an excellent opportunity for young teens in our community to get volunteer experience! They also developed a sense of pride because of their new-found knowledge of the history of Colorado Springs.”

– Sarah M., Junior Docent Parent

The Junior Docent Program 2020 Application is closed.

Junior Docent Program