Become a volunteer at the American Swedish Institute!
ASI relies on many dedicated volunteers to carry out its mission and serve our community. Volunteers play a vital role by lending their time and talent in welcoming guests to the Nelson Cultural Center, the historic Turnblad Mansion, the Wallenberg library and archives, the ASI Museum Shop and all the activities hosted on our campus. Volunteering is a great way to connect with other like-minded individuals interested in our work, Nordic culture and serving the public.
ASI offers semester and J-term internships. Current internship opportunities are posted on our Employment page.
For more information about internship opportunities please contact Rachel Morgan in Human Resources, 612-870-3375.
History of volunteering at ASI
During the mid to late 1930s, a group of volunteers came together to form The Associates to coordinate the gift shop at ASI, which was located in the den of the Turnblad Mansion. The Associates held monthly meetings to report on shop business. During the 1970s, 80s, and early 90s, the shop was managed by a volunteer manager. In the late 1990s, the shop transitioned to its current management format, and volunteers continue to play a vital part in its success.
Throughout its history, ASI has relied on guards, guides and reception desk volunteers. During the 1980s, John and Marge Pollack were in charge of coordinating volunteers for reception, guide, and guard positions. During this time, volunteer committees were formed, and a day leader would be in charge of all volunteers for a specific day of the week. An ad hoc committee met three or four times a year to discuss volunteers’ concerns, and to socialize. Over the years, as the Institute expanded its programming, volunteer opportunities increased, and more volunteers were brought into the ASI family.
In the early 2000s, a staff member began serving as a liaison to the volunteers, and through their efforts the volunteer program was greatly expanded. The process of becoming a volunteer has been streamlined into a simple application and interview process. Today, volunteers continue to play a vital role as ambassadors and stewards of ASI's daily work and mission.
- 10% discount in the Museum Shop, and volunteers who work at least 40 hours in a calendar year receive a 20% discount.*
- Monthly volunteer-only raffle for great prizes.
- Subscription to ASI's online newsletter Klipp!
- Recognition at annual Volunteer Appreciation Dinner.
- Bi-monthly lectures and training sessions on topics ranging from the history of the Turnblad Mansion to contemporary Scandinavia.
- The rewards of growth, learning, and satisfaction that come from contributing time and service to an organization.
- Free Parking!
* This discount does not include food items.
How to Become a Volunteer
For more information about volunteer opportunities, contact Rob Nicholl, Visitor Service and Volunteer Coordinator at 612-870-3344 or firstname.lastname@example.org.