Volunteering and Internships

Request Description

Volunteers at the Woodson Research Center work in many ways to ensure the long-term physical stability of our rare books, archives, and manuscripts, so that they will remain available to researchers. Book box making, mylar encapsulation of fragile paper, manuscript research and identification of photographs are just a few of the tasks taken on by volunteers. 

From time to time, there are volunteer opportunities in other areas of the library.

For more information, contact: Amanda Focke, Director of the Woodson Research Center at: afocke@rice.edu or 713.348.2124.

To apply, please review the volunteer policy and click next.


Fondren Library makes every effort to accommodate library school students who require a practicum or internship to complete their library education. In order to ensure that the experience is a meaningful introduction to the practice of librarianship and that the benefit to the library and the student is mutual, each internship matches carefully the student’s aptitudes and interests with real, focused work advancing Fondren’s mission and goals. Not every request can be accommodated. For more information, please contact: Amanda Focke,Head of Special Collections afocke@rice.edu, (713) 348-2124.

  1. Policy
  2. Contact Information
  3. Availability & Skills
  4. Complete

Fondren Library Volunteer Policy
Fondren Library depends on the commitment and expertise of many in the community who give their time and energy to our on-going projects. Here are guidelines to help ensure that the volunteer experience is a positive one for all involved.

Minimum age
Minimum age is 18.

Minimum time requirements
Volunteers assisting with short-term projects will agree to meet minimum time requirements as mutually agreed upon between volunteer and volunteer liaison. Volunteers are asked to make a minimum commitment of 4 hours per week, completed in 4-hour blocks of time, generally for no less than 6 months.  A set schedule will be mutually agreed upon between volunteer and volunteer liaison.

Regular attendance is important.  Being late may inconvenience those who count on the volunteer’s assistance.  Volunteers who must be late should notify their volunteer liaison in advance.  Volunteers should also notify their volunteer liaison as far in advance as possible should an absence be required.  Any volunteer failing to appear without notification for two weeks in a row will be automatically withdrawn from the volunteer program.

Orientation and training
Once a prospective volunteer has been chosen for the program in an area determined by mutual interest, the volunteer will participate in on-the-job training by a departmental/volunteer liaison. The volunteer will sign an agreement form covering the nature of volunteer duties and appropriate behavior.

Volunteer Picture ID
Before beginning their duties, all volunteers are required to have an official Rice picture ID card identifying them as complimentary employees. Each volunteer’s liaison will work with Fondren administrative staff to ensure the volunteer gets an ID. The ID permits access to the building at both Library entrances.

The Library does not pay for parking.  There are numerous parking lots on the perimeter of the campus. The closest covered parking is the Central Parking Garage under the Business School.  An economy lot is located at the edge of the campus next to the stadium.  Shuttle buses run a regular schedule with numerous stops. Please visit the campus parking information website for information.

Visitors/Telephone use
Volunteers are asked to refrain from visiting with friends and family during their hours.  Children are not allowed to accompany volunteers to work. Cell phones should be off or on mute during volunteer hours. Use of telephones should not interfere with volunteer responsibilities.

Safety is of primary importance for staff and volunteers.  Volunteers should report any safety hazards and inappropriate behavior to their volunteer liaison.

Volunteers may occasionally leave the program before completion of their commitment.  The volunteer liaison should be informed if the volunteer decides to leave.