Today, we are extremely excited to announce the Hult Center’s new volunteer program – the Arts Ambassadors! We sat down with Jen Cumberworth & Louise Thomas Vails, the heads of this program, to get to know them a little better. They answer some questions about this new program, what it entails and what the ideal candidates look like.
About Arts Ambassadors
Arts Ambassadors is a brand-new volunteer program that supports the Hult Center for the Performing Arts. Members of this program are truly ambassadors, representing the performances, the Center, and Eugene’s cultural programming. Arts Ambassador duties include a variety of responsibilities, and they get to help create unique experiences that surprise, delight, entertain and educate tens of thousands of people each year.
Louise Thomas-Vails, Front of House Manager at the Hult Center for the Performing Arts, has been part of the Hult Team since 1985. Currently she manages the Front of House staff, including ushers and volunteers, as well as oversees the Hult Center Training Program. Prior to working full time at the Hult, she managed and owned the Bijou Art Cinemas. Louise embodies compassion, equity, and dedication to service while enthusiastically championing opportunities for people to become engaged at the Hult Center.
Jen Cumberworth has been with the Hult Center for just over three years and oversees the Education and Community Engagement programs. She is a Midwesterner who moved here from Chicago after spending nearly a decade in the improv and sketch comedy scene. Jen loves everything about the performing arts and is thrilled to be a part of the Arts Ambassador Program.
Who is an ideal candidate for the Arts Ambassador program?
Jen: We are so excited to grow the Hult Center Team with this program, and we want anyone and everyone who loves the arts, meeting new people and who want to share their life experiences!
Louise: An ideal Arts Ambassador would be someone who loves the arts and loves to share that passion with other people. We love to work with people who are excited to have a wonderful time enhancing patrons’ enjoyment.
What are you most excited about with this program?
Jen: I am most excited about the people! I love meeting new people and learning about all the different reasons why they are passionate about the arts. Although we share a common ground of being arts lovers, there are so many different perspectives, histories, visions etc., and I love hearing about it all. I am also just beyond thrilled to welcome people back in the Center again to celebrate art and each other!
Louise: It feels like the perfect time to unveil this program, after the collective experience of the last year and ½. I’m most excited to envelope the current SHO Volunteers and invite new volunteers from every facet of our community to assist us in welcoming everyone in the community back to live performing arts. Integrating the arts more fully into our lives enriches each of us, and because engaging in the arts brings individuals together, it fosters community.
What can Ambassadors look forward to?
Jen: Besides having the opportunity to see most shows, Ambassadors get to be a part of a stellar team and meet new friends (do you see a theme here with my responses?). They will get to see firsthand how a large performing arts center operates and will be rewarded for all their important work and time with appreciation events, shows, swag and more!
Louise: Getting to know the rest of the team here! And they can look forward to having clear and concise direction, purpose, roles, and rules, which truly sets the groundwork for having a wonderful and rewarding experience. Jen mentioned all the other cool stuff Ambassadors will be rewarded with…the best part of this program in my view is that Jen and I will be communicating directly with Ambassadors to create a responsive, dynamic experience for everyone involved.
What is your favorite part about being on the Hult Center Team?
Jen: Besides the lifelong friendships I’ve made, I truly love what I do! It is an incredible feeling to be a part of these amazing experiences and getting to see people light up at shows. I love seeing performers from all over the world and getting to experience their incredible stories through the beautiful and important art they share!
Louise: The people we work with and the work we do! We have a remarkable Team whose goal is to bring art, essential to human existence, to our community. Everyone, from every department, works behind the scenes to make excellence look seamless. And each one is a gem. Being here is always a joy!
If you are 16+ and interested in joining the Arts Ambassadors Program you can find more information on our Education webpage. Applications are open June 21st – July 22nd and can be found on the website.