"Being with the students gives me that connection with the world that I also got when I traveled. And so I feel like I don't need to travel as much because I have my international understanding, learning, and opportunities right here in the classroom."
- Claire Kevill, WEC Volunteer
BECOME A VOLUNTEER!
Like to teach or tutor? Enjoy meeting people from other countries? Familiar with computers? Have other special skills you would like to share? Join Washington English Center's incredible team of volunteers to make a difference in someone else's life as well as your own.
Ready to apply to be a teacher or tutor?
Please complete our online Volunteer Application.
Note: if you are seeking to volunteer with WEC for a Teaching English to Speakers Of another Language (TESOL) or Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) program practicum and require feedback, please mention this in your Volunteer Application.
CURRENT VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES INCLUDE:
Online Job Coaches (see Employment Services, below)
Check back in the fall for expanded offerings as we continue to adapt to COVID-19!
In the past we have offered the following volunteer opportunities on-site: ESOL Teacher, Citizenship Teacher, Computer Literacy Teacher, Librarian, Conversation Club Leader, One-On-One Tutor, Office Assistant
The current volunteer commitment is for ten weeks starting at any time.
Online Conversation Tutors and Online Club Leaders hold one-hour sessions at the same time each week, plus spend a little time preparing between sessions. Online Writing Tutors spend the equivalent of one hour per week with their student, but mostly communicate asynchronously. Volunteers interested in additonal hours are welcome to tutor more than one student, or lead more than one club.
More volunteering options will be built in as we continue to adapt to COVID-19.
English Literacy Education
Qualifications for Teachers and Tutors
Have the desire to work with volunteers and adult students from different cultural, educational, economic, and linguistic backgrounds! NO teaching experience necessary! This said, our teachers need to:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Be willing to make an 10-week online commitment (check back later for information on potential in-person commitments)
- Complete new volunteer pre-service training (self-paced, online <1 hour)
- Have regular access to email for important information distribution
- Be enthusiastic about working with adults from different cultural, educational, economic, and linguistic backgrounds
- Be proficient in English (being a native speaker is not necessary - some of our former students are teachers!)
- Be comfortable with technology or willing to learn
Currently, volunteers can make a ten-week online commitment at any time.
When we are able to offer classes again at our physical location, teaching terms will also take place on the below schedule.
FALL, WINTER AND SPRING TERMS (11 WEEKS)
Mondays through Wednesdays: Day Classes are 10 AM to 1 PM; Evening Classes are 7 PM to 9 PM
Saturdays and Sundays: Classes are 2 PM to 5 PM
Sunday (Conversational English): 10 AM to 12 PM
SUMMER TERM (6 WEEKS)
Mondays through Wednesdays: Day Classes are 10 AM to 1 PM; Evenings from 630 PM to 830 PM
Saturdays and Sundays: Classes are 2 PM to 5 PM
Please note: Tutoring sessions and Conversation English Clubs do not meet during the Summer Term
In addition to English language instruction, Washington English Center also provides no cost workforce preparation services and job seeking assistance to adult immigrants. Our employment services volunteers and job coaches assist with:
Writing or editing resumes and cover letters
Assisting people in searching for and applying for jobs online
Helping people prepare for job interviews
Accompanying people on job interviews
Serving as an ambassador to establish partnerships with local employers
Assisting staff with administrative tasks
Planning and executing special events such as job fairs and workshops
QUESTIONS OFTEN ASKED BY VOLUNTEERS
Is teaching experience required?
No! All volunteers take our pre-service training to help prepare for teaching at WEC. We provide you with tutoring resources and supplemental instructional materials. We also offer additional training and ongoing support throughout your service.
English is not my native language. Can I still volunteer?
Yes! WEC values linguistic diversity and welcomes volunteers who have had to study English themselves. In fact, some of our former students are teachers!
Do I have to speak another language other than English?
No! All of our classes are taught in English. It is typical for there to be several different native languages represented in each class, so English is the common language.
I have a busy schedule, how often do I have to meet for classes?
Online volunteer tutors must be willing to make a 10-week commitment. You can begin your service at any time.
When we resume group classes, these commitments will be for 11 weeks (Fall, Winter and Spring) or 6 weeks (Summer), for 2 to 3 hours one day a week. We offer classes year-round, so select a term and schedule that works for your schedule and one that you are sure you can commit to. For example:
Fall: Mid-September to early December
Winter: Mid-January to late March
Spring: Mid-April to late June
Summer: Mid-July to late August
Weekdays: Monday through Thursday, 10 AM to 1 PM
Evenings: Monday through Thursday, 7 PM to 9 PM
Weekend: Saturday & Sunday, 2 PM to 5 PM
Sundays: 9 AM to 12 Noon
What are the requirements to be a volunteer?
All volunteers must:
be 18 years of age or older
make an 10 week commitment
participate in volunteer training
have regular access to email
have the desire to work with adults from different cultural, educational and economic backgrounds
be comfortable with technology or willing to learn
- speak English proficiently (being a native speaker is not necessary - many of our former students are teachers!)
Where is the nearest metro or bus stop?
The nearest metro station is the Dupont Circle Metro Station (take the Q Street exit) on the Red Line. If you wish to take the bus, the bus lines are 42, 43, H1, L2 and L1. Please note that WEC's physical location is currently closed.
Where is the best place to park?
The only parking available for volunteers is street parking in Zone 2. There is two-hour parking bordering the Washington Center building; however we encourage volunteers to take public transportation whenever possible. Please note that WEC's physical location is currently closed.
Where are the teachers and students from?
All over the globe! Washington English Center takes pride in our multicultural learning atmosphere. We have students from over 100 different countries. We also accept volunteer teachers from around the world.