Volunteer at MCPL
Volunteers are a vital part of the library team. There are many critical operations which volunteers perform that allow the staff to assist library users. Generally, volunteers do not work directly with the public.
Become a volunteer
Volunteers must be 13 years old or have completed 8th grade. The minimum age may be waived for particular volunteer assignments that might be suitable to children.
- Call the library where you wish to volunteer to see if positions are available.
- Fill out an application.
- Meet and interview with the library Volunteer Coordinator.
We aim to match your skills, interests, experience, service preferences, and availability to our volunteer needs, placing you as soon as possible to meet our needs and yours. Both short-term and long-term assignments are available. Volunteer hours per week vary, depending on library needs and your available time.
Cooperative volunteer programs
We place many volunteers in cooperation with other agencies and organizations.
Student Service Learning (SSL) Program Volunteers
Young people and high school students volunteer in order to fulfill community service requirements for high school graduation. Complete the Student Volunteer Application, and submit it at your local library.
Interns or Practicum Students
Students working towards their undergraduate degrees in journalism and graduate degrees in library and information sciences get valuable experience through structured library volunteer activities credited toward their degree.
Cooperative Recruitment Programs
Montgomery County Public Libraries cooperates with various volunteer agencies serving as recruitment and placement centers, such as the Montgomery County Volunteer Center, the Retired Senior Volunteer Program, and the Alternative Community Services program.
Volunteer advisory groups
In addition to giving your time as an individual to your local branch, you can contribute your time to an advisory group.
County Library Board
The thirteen-member County Library Board inquires into all matters affecting the library system and makes recommendations to the County Executive either directly or through the MCPL Director.
- Twelve of the members are appointed by the County Executive and approved by the Council.
- The thirteenth member is appointed by the Board of Education.
- Each Board member is assigned two or three libraries and attends the meetings of those local Library Advisory Committees.
- The Director serves as Secretary to the Library Board and provides clerical support with the Director's administrative office staff.
Library Advisory Committees
Each library has a Library Advisory Committee of three to sixteen members, designated by the County Library Board to represent that library's service area. These committees:
- Advise the local library manager, the Library Board, and the County Executive concerning the library needs in the area that they represent;
- Suggest overall improvements to the County library system;
- Make recommendations concerning Board membership.
LAC members serve up to two three-year terms. Membership must be approved by the Library Board. Apply for nomination to a Library Advisory Committee.
Friends of the Library, Montgomery County, Maryland, Inc.
The Friends of the Library enhances the public library system by funding programs, services, and publications. Membership at various levels is open to individuals, families, and corporations. The Friends:
- Distribute free and discounted books to deserving communities;
- Encourage reading among children and adult life-long learning;
- Promote librarianship as a career;
- Support local writers by sponsoring author programs;
- Educate non-traditional library users about the public library system.
For questions about volunteering, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator at your local library.