The DHC student volunteers scheme offers any Arts student the chance to learn digital and transferable skills, and gain valuable work experience.
After training in basic digital imaging, volunteers choose to join one of our teams (see below). They work on digital projects, and provide support for teaching and research, events, and activities throughout the faculty, often in partnership with other Schools and external partners.
Email the DHC to find out about volunteering
I will tell anyone who will listen how great the DHC is and encourage everybody to take part in it either as a volunteer or just as a visitor; it will definitely improve your university experience!
Hester Pode, tour guide, Broughton House, Northants
Our 3 volunteer teams...
- cover DHC’s social media output
- produce marketing documents
- represent the centre at Open Days and events
- write, edit and commission blogposts about volunteer activities, for ‘Digital Dialogues’
DHC volunteers' blog
- maintain and create digital and analogue collections including the School's 80,000 slide collection and the Classics and Archaeology department's Independent Second Year Project library
- learn archiving and digitisation skills
Digital photography, video and audio
- look after our DSLR and video cameras
- advise and support to the other volunteer teams and projects where video, photography and audio capture are required
- carry out assignments by Humanities departments that require video, photography promotional content, or capture Arts events for posterity
More than 80 Arts students have volunteered with DHC since it began in 2012. All cite their time at the centre as enjoyable and positive. Many have stayed in touch, some writing blogs about how the unique experience has helped them to gain employment.
As well as social events organised by the team, volunteers are also offered exclusive sessions with the University’s Careers and Employability Service who advise them on how to present the skills and experience gained to future employers and on their CVs. They are also offered an annual trip to the University’s Manuscripts and Special Collections where they tour the archives, meet the team, and learn about digital archiving and preservation.
Volunteering at the DHC really stands out to employers because it’s such a genuinely unique opportunity which relatively few universities have to offer.
Tom Travis, Digital Communications Officer, External Relations, University of Nottingham
Meet some of the 2017-18 volunteer team
BA English, Marketing Team
My role focuses primarily on organising and managing the DHC's social media output and raising student awareness of our projects, events and resources. I love building our online outreach, and learning about the professional side of social media. Getting the centre recognised by the Digital Humanities departments at Stanford and Yale Universities has been a huge highlight of my work here, not to mention being able to work on Nottingham outreach projects like the Being Human Festival 2016 where I got to meet Oxford scholar Dr Theodore Zeldin CBE and be part of his 'Conversation Dinner'.
BA History, Collections Team
I’m Fatima and I’m a second year History student. I’m a member of the collections team, working with the DHC’s extensive slide collection and on the Hennessy Project. I joined the DHC with the hope to learn new skills in digitisation and archiving, as well as get involved with exciting new projects, and so far I haven’t been disappointed!
BA Ancient History, Collections Team
Hi, my name’s Sally and I’m a third-year student of Ancient History. I currently volunteer at the DHC, and as a member of the collections team, my role involves the digitisation of materials deemed valuable enough to be preserved. The range of technology that the DHC has available, as well as the skills I am developing are precisely why I chose to volunteer here. It's a small commitment, but a lot of fun and has the potential to be extremely beneficial in the future.
BA History of Art, Social Rep
Hello! I'm Chloe, a second year History of Art student. As Social Rep for the DHC, I organise trips, socials and meetings for the team, putting together agendas and taking minutes. I am also working on the “Scaling the Sublime: Art at the Limits of Landscape” project in partnership with the Lakeside Arts Centre
. We will be using Artcodes
(aesthetically pleasing QR codes) to make the digital content which we are also creating, accessible to visitors via smartphones. There are lots of great opportunities at the DHC, I would recommend volunteering to anyone who wants to do something a bit different. It’s a very small time commitment but you can get a lot out of it.
MA History, Collections Team
I have most enjoyed the opportunity to get involved in the Slide Collections Team's Then and Now exhibition. Learning to digitise slides, helping to research them for the exhibition and setting up the final event was interesting, skill developing and highly rewarding. I am looking forward to getting involved in similar projects next year alongside my Masters, for my CV and for fun!
BA History, Collections Team
I’m a third year history student and part of the collections team. I joined the DHC because of the opportunities that were on offer, from the organised tour of the University's Manuscripts and Special Collections’ archives, to getting involved with a variety of unique projects; all whilst enhancing my CV. I have also had the enormous privilege of learning to digitise and preserve original historical documents, through the Hennessey Project. Overall I couldn’t recommend the DHC enough, for it has been an enjoyable, beneficial and highly rewarding experience.
BA Archaeology, Collections Team
I'm Beth and I'm a second year BA Archaeology student. I joined the collections team as a way of getting more experience working with collections and learning digital skills. So far I have worked with the Slides Collection and taught myself how to use a programme called AutoCAD during my shifts, and in the New Year I'll begin working on the Djanogly Gallery archive digitisation project. Working in the DHC is one of the most rewarding volunteering activities I've taken part in at university, it's given me the chance to dramatically enhance my CV with very little required commitment - especially for such a great opportunity!
BA Classics, Oculus Team
My name is Joe Ribton, I'm a Classics student with a passion for a wide range of creative arts. In my spare time I run my own blog on film photography and wider culture and also make short films. I became aware of the DHC when making my ISYP, and used the facilities to learn how to edit film. I spent about 100 hours in there using Adobe Premiere and was so impressed with the quality of the DHC's products that I felt inclined to sign up as a volunteer. I work with the Oculus team, building a VR museum using the Unity engine.
BA Classical Civilisation and Art History, Marketing Team
Hi! I’m Ellen and I’m a third year Classical Civilisation and Art History student. I’m part of the marketing team in the DHC, focusing on market research - finding out what other students think of the DHC and using their responses to improve the service. I joined the DHC team as I wanted to get more experience with software and equipment that I wouldn’t otherwise have access to. I can’t recommend the DHC highly enough; it’s a small commitment with big benefits.
BA Classical Civilisation
I joined the DHC this academic year as I wanted to do something additional to my course in my second year. Starting in January, I will be working on the Djanogly digitisation project, which will involve digitising the Djanogly Art Gallery’s archives which date back to the 1950s. The relationship that the DHC has with the gallery is really valuable to me as someone who is interested in working in this type of field after university. Also, I am glad to be learning new skills in a world that is increasingly technology-based.
BA Art History, Collections Team
Hi, I'm Lucy Parfitt, a 2nd year Art History student. I'm part of the Collections team of the DHC in which we are currently going through the process of sifting through the slides to remove decolourised and duplicated slides. I particularly enjoy looking though the slides and seeing the masses of art works we have in slide form. I joined the DHC as a way to increase my digital skills and knowledge and am looking forward to starting the Djanogly Gallery digitalisation project.
BA Philosophy, Oculus Team
My name’s Ella and I’m a second year student studying philosophy. I began volunteering at the DHC this year, having heard little about it. I was keen to get involved with creative projects and joined the Oculus team where we have been experimenting with VR, building a VR museum from scratch, which we hope will attract lots of newcomers to the DHC in future. The DHC has taught me so many new skills and is a great thing for the CV so I’d encourage anyone to come and get involved!
My time at the DHC helped me enormously in pursuing my dream job as an archivist.
Rhiannon Compton, archivist, Houses of Parliament
Volunteering at the DHC dramatically enriched my degree and allowed me to grow, learn and develop the skills I now use as Digital Curator.
Emma Hardiman, digital curator at Athena
DHC volunteer alumni
See what last year's volunteers worked on
English with Creative Writing, Marketing Team
I've particularly enjoyed learning Photoshop to make new posters for the DHC, and getting to know the team.
Collections Team, BA History of Art and English
The DHC has given me the opportunity to engage with my subject in new and exciting ways. It has also been a supportive creative outlet during my time at university.
English and Hispanic Studies, Marketing Team
I've found that my time volunteering at the DHC has helped me to step outside my comfort zone, and to develop my organisational and communicative skills further.
The Visual Culture of Classical Antiquity, DHC Collections Team
I have enjoyed learning about the slide collection and the variety of the slide work from cataloguing to digitisation has been beneficial for my studies as well as career prospects.
MA English Literature, Collections Team
My experiences at the DHC and my primary source of enjoyment whilst volunteering there can be epitomised in one word: connectivity; not only in the symbiosis between old and new technologies, but also in the wonderful interaction between volunteers from across departments.