Docent Program

Docent Jim discusses Tahoe with visitors

Docent Program

Do you love Lake Tahoe? Join a group of individuals who are helping to provide the best in science education and foster stewardship throughout the Tahoe Basin. The UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center coordinates a volunteer docent program to connect the talents of community volunteers to the needs and interests of visitors and students.
After completing your docent training program, you will be able to select subject areas and responsibilities. The range of activities available to docents is varied. Examples of opportunities include:

  • Assist visitors with hands-on science activities
  • Be available to explain the science center exhibits to visitors
  • Provide tours of the Tahoe Science Center, Incline Village
  • Provide tours of the Eriksson Education Center, Tahoe City
  • Provide green building tours of the Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences, Incline Village
  • Assist in outreach programs for schools and community events
  • Work in the Docent Office i.e. filing, typing, mailings, phone and e-mail correspondence

We currently attract thousands of visitors, locals, and tourists to the UC Davis Tahoe Science Center every year. Our volunteer docents help visitors have an entertaining, educational experience through which they will learn about Lake Tahoe and environmental problems affecting it. Our program offers docents unlimited opportunities for enrichment, public outreach, and personal satisfaction.

2018 Docent Roster

New Docent Training

The Docent Training Program for both the Tahoe Science Center (Incline Village) and the Eriksson Education Center (Tahoe City) is held annually in the summer. The 2019 training dates are tentatively scheduled for June 13, 17, 18, and 20. This training program in environmental education and leadership provides new docents with all the instruction they will need to help the public explore our science education centers. 2019 Draft Agenda Available.

New volunteers can also join the program by meeting with our Docent Program Coordinator, reading the Docent Manual, and shadowing tours until they are comfortable hosting tours.

For more information about the docent program, please contact Docent Program Coordinator Alison Toy at (775) 881-7566, or e-mail

Docent Training Program

  • 2019 Docent Training Flyer
  • 2019 Docent Training Draft Agenda 
    • Session 1: Program Overview, Lake Tahoe 101, and Geology of the Tahoe Basin
    • Session 2: Education Exhibits of the Tahoe Science Center
    • Session 3a: Docent Boat Ride on the UC Davis Research Vessel John LeConte
    • Session 3b: Aquatic Food Web, Natives and Non-Native Species, Eriksson Education Center, Historic Hatchery Background, Citizen Science, and Demonstration Garden
    • Session 4: Lake Tahoe Research and Forest Health
  • Docent Shadowing Check-list

Docent Training Videos (2018 versions available)

Videos from this past docent training our now posted on UCTV use the following links to view videos.

"Fire and Forest Health in the Lake Tahoe Basin" with Patricia Maloney, "Docent Comments" with Tim Kosier, and "Everything you wanted to know about Tahoe" with Geoff Schladow" (2018)

"Lake of the Sky" with Dave Antonucci, "Program Overview and A Hike through the docent manual" with Heather Segale and Alison Toy, and "A Geologic & Tectonic History of the Lake Tahoe Basin" with Annie Kell (2018)

"Research and Monitoring at Lake Tahoe/Food Web Research at Lake Tahoe" (2014) 

"Lake Tahoe and the World Wide Water Crisis" (2014)