At the past ACE Conference in San Francisco, I had the opportunity to be a part of the work-study program (run by the amazing Tara, who also happens to be our Hup Squad coordinator). Obviously, volunteers are super important in making these excellent circus events happen, but here are five reasons why volunteering at an ACE or AYCO festival may benefit or create a more enjoyable experience for YOU:
1. Free Registration:
If you are on a budget, as many circus people are, applying to the work study program may just be for you. In exchange for your volunteer work, the costs of your event registration are competely covered!
2. Fellow Volunteers:
All of your fellow volunteers at this event are people in similar situations as you with the same central interest, Circus. This allows for a tight and powerful bond between fellow volunteers which can lead to long-lasting friendships.
3. Networking Opportunities:
While volunteering at the event, it is inevitable that you will interact with and assist attendees of the event. Many American Circus Educators members are well-established teachers, directors, performers and producers in the circus community, and because the usual social barrier has been broken down by your role as volunteer at the event, the networking opportunities are endless.
4. Festival Accessibility:
Although you will be volunteering throughout the event, there is still time to attend workshops and participate in the festivities. Much of the volunteering is done between workshops or at breaks, so there is plenty of time to participate in most of the festival!
5. All Around Amazing Time:
From first-hand experience, participating in the work-study program is an all-around great time! Do it and you will most definitely not regret it!