Many patrons support the work of the Museum without joining any organized group. Information about supporting the Museum is available by calling 417.837.5700.

Southwest Missouri Museum Associates

The Southwest Missouri Museum Associates (SMMA) provide financial resources, and have been instrumental in developing the Museum. From the original seven members, SMMA membership has grown to more than 1,100 and has been responsible for much of the Museum's growth for more than 70 years.

Friends of the Springfield Art Museum

Friends of the Springfield Art Museum (FOSAM) is an organization dedicated to supporting the Museum's exhibitions and programs. Memberships are available in this group which offer year-round art-related experiences ranging from lectures to social events. To learn more about the "Friends" organization, go The Friends of the Springfield Art Museum website.


Do you enjoy looking at and learning about art? Would you like to explore ideas and share information with others? Do you have an interest in meeting new people?

Springfield docents volunteer to lead interactive tours to groups of adults and children. Docents volunteer on a weekly basis, or as the schedule dictates, and participate in monthly docent meetings. Applicants receive one year of training and apprenticeship. Docents attend the National Docent Symposium on a rotating basis. Volunteers are the soul of the Springfield Art Museum, providing expertise and sharing their knowledge in a variety of areas.

Docents are required to complete a formal training session and must make a commitment of one year to the tour program, prior to leading tours for the public.

Potential docents must be at least 18 years of age, possess an enthusiasm for learning, a passion for the visual arts and an ability to speak in front of groups of people.

Fill out the application and return it to the Springfield Art Museum.

Frequently Asked Questions Concerning Docents

  • I am not an artist, and don't know much about art, can I still become a docent?
  • Although a background in the visual arts is helpful, it is not required, as a formal training program is offered for all new docents through the Springfield Art Museum.

    After "new docent" training, a monthly docent meeting provides ongoing educational opportunities where new ideas and information about artists and artwork is shared.

    A docent handbook is provided for all volunteers. Docents are encouraged to conduct independent research on related topics or particular artists.

  • Is there a fee to become a docent?
  • While there is no monetary cost to join the docent program, a commitment of time is required. We ask that new docents, after completing training, commit to the program for a minimum of one year and lead at least two tours a month.

  • How do I sign up?
  • Fill out the application and return it to the Springfield Art Museum.

    You may be asked for a brief, personal interview before admission into the program. Check with the Museum Educator for current information about future docent training opportunities. Call the Museum at 417.837.5700 for more information.

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