Queercon 16 Volunteer Guidelines

Without our Volunteers, Sponsors and Partners, Queercon would not be the community of LGBTQ+/Ally Hackers that we are today. As a nonprofit, we depend on donations of time, service, and funds to make our vision of a safe, curious space into a reality. On behalf of our current volunteers, including our Board, Officers, Department Heads, Handlers, Liaisons, Crew Leads and Crew, thank you for considering donations of service.

Queercon depends on our Volunteers to help make and keep our space safe, open, and accessible to everyone in our community. As a volunteer, you’re not only directly supporting the organization and the community, but you’ll also have a direct channel to our conference operations and opportunities to develop your conference-running skills!

To help understand our conference structure, Queercon has created this handy reference section. Inside you will find descriptions, requirements and responsibilities for each of our seasonal roles (also referred to as “on-site,” meaning these roles are vital to keeping the conference running!).

This page will cover a few important things to know before registering as a Queercon Volunteer. Below you will find:

  • Queercon's Volunteer's Promise;
  • an outline of some of the events Queercon hosts;
  • Benefits of volunteering; and
  • Role descriptions and responsibilities.

After taking a look through the material below, we invite you to let us know how you'd like to get involved via our Volunteer Application located here: https://forms.gle/9GyXJwD3MBR27dD27.

Questions regarding volunteering can be e-mailed to [email protected].

 

Volunteer's Promise

As a member of the Queercon Crew, we expect you to exemplify Queercon’s values in your actions and service with the organization. This goes beyond our Code of Conduct (though we expect you to uphold that as well!), and includes:

  • Guiding members of our community in curating a positive social atmosphere;
  • Supporting members of our community as they improve their understanding of themselves, of our colleagues and of our society;
  • Developing your personal understanding of an evolving community by engaging with our attendees, guests, panelists, and leaders;
  • Leading (by example!) in the protection of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer and Gender Non-Conforming people with an understanding of the different privileges, needs, cultures, lenses and perceptions, including race, income, age, health and identity; and
  • Advocating for safe spaces outside of the Queercon conference (when safe to do so!)

As a representative of Queercon, people of our community look to you as an example; so it is vitally important that you follow our last guiding principle: Have fun!

 

Community Events

Queercon provides events and entertainment for our attendees from our opening ceremonies on Thursday to our closing ceremonies on Sunday. While the majority of our events are planned, organized, and hosted by Queercon, with the help of our Crew, some events are co-hosted with our Sponsors, such as the Recruiting Village and some of our afternoon mixers, and some events are co-hosted with our Partners, such as the BSidesLV and BlackHat mixers. Specific schedules vary year-to-year and the shift schedules are shared with our Crew as we build our program. There are four types of daytime events:

  • MIXERS bring together attendees of different identities from multiple conferences to support each other and network;
  • MEET-UPS bring together attendees of similar identities to support each other and share their experiences;
  • PANELS/TRACKS/TALKS invite speakers to share their knowledge, experience and perspective with a Queercon audience; and
  • VILLAGES create a communal area for group activities, such as our Recruitment Village and Badge and Hardware Village.

In addition, we have a few signature evening events:

  • KICK-OFF PARTY - A warm welcome to all of our attendees to Queercon, whether attending for the first or the fifteenth time;
  • FRIDAY NIGHT POOL PARTY - A space to express our identities, celebrate our pride and cool off from the blistering Vegas temps; and
  • SATURDAY NIGHT RAINBOW BALL - An opportunity to let loose a bit, dance the night away or belt out a tune at karaoke.

 

Benefits

Like all volunteering, donating time and service to Queercon is a great way to give back to our community. Similar to monetary donations, a personal sense of reward motivates most of our Crew with an opportunity to give-back, pay-it-forward or help grow and foster our community. For tax and legal reasons, we can’t pay our volunteers; but we can show our gratitude and endless appreciation in other ways, such as:

  • Behind-the-scenes, “insider” knowledge, such as early peeks at the schedule and event list;
  • Early registration in the room block and advance notice of badge sales;
  • Opportunities to learn more about Queercon, grow with the organization and gain first-hand experience in conference operations and event management; and
  • Upon request, written certification of your service hours for applicable professional development requirements or community donation drives.

Finally, although we can’t guarantee it, active and engaged Crew members often catch the attention of those with coveted QC electronic badges to give away!

 

Role Descriptions

 

Handlers and Liaisons

These positions are our most visible positions, with lots of social interaction required. Handlers and Liaisons help our attendees, including Partners, Sponsors, VIPs, and Press, navigate the Queercon conference space and events, foster and promote a welcoming and inclusive environment and engage new and old attendees alike to help them have an outstanding experience.

A typical shift will involve checking-in at our Operations Center and then heading to your designated meet-up location to debrief with your shift's Lead (or, as the Lead of an event, debriefing with the Chief Operations Officer), and then working through your scheduled block of an event. Shifts vary in duration, but are typically tied to setting up and tearing down of a particular event, and can be up-to 4 hour blocks. By nature of some of our events, you must be 21+ to apply.

Handlers

SHIFTS RUN: Wednesday through Sunday (August 7 -11, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Prior to the conference start, Wednesday or Thursday (Aug. 7, 8, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: A minimum of 1-year experience as our Crew

Reporting to our Operations department, our Handlers act as the hosts for our conference’s mixers, meet-ups, panels and villages. Typical responsibilities include:

  • Greeting and engaging attendees of events, including Sponsors and Partners;
  • Promoting a positive and safe social atmosphere;
  • Answering general inquiries (or helping someone find the Info Booth); and
  • Monitoring for emergencies and helping QSec, as directed.
Liaisons: Venue, Sponsor, Partner, VIP and Press

SHIFTS RUN: As necessary to meet the needs of our guests
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Prior to working with Partners and Sponsors; Wednesday or Thursday (Aug. 7, 8, 2019).
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: A minimum of 1-year experience as a Handler or Crew Lead.

These specialty roles require previous experience with Queercon conference activities. Shifts are scheduled to meet and anticipate the needs of our Sponsors and Partners, and may require on-call, on-site availability for the full duration of one or more events each day. Additional assistance may be required of Liaisons throughout the year to help Queercon foster and maintain these relationships. While the responsibilities are similar to the Handler role, Liaisons work directly with our: Venue, Partners, Sponsors, VIPs and Press. Typical responsibilities include:

  • Greeting, guiding and being generally available to assist in the needs of Sponsors, Partners or Press at various times throughout the conference;
  • Coordinating between Sponsors, Partners, VIPs, Press and Queercon leadership; and
  • Arranging for shipment of Sponsor, Partner and Queercon materials between origin and venue (and, when applicable, ensuring materials are returned to origin).

 

Crew Leads

These positions lead our Crew teams in making Queercon a successful event for our attendees as well as fellow Crew members. A typical shift will involve checking-in at our Operations Center and then heading to your designated meet-up location (for example, Swag Crew Leads will meet up at the Swag/Info Booths to debrief with the Swag Department Head or the current on-shift Swag Crew Lead). Shifts may be scheduled for 2 - 6 hours, although that will vary by area of responsibility and needs of the conference (for example, setting up the conference space on Tuesday and Wednesday and tear-down on Sunday and Monday may have longer shifts). By nature of some of our events, you must be 21+ to apply.

Production Crew Lead

SHIFTS RUN: Tuesday through Monday (August 6 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Prior to the conference start, Tuesday (Aug. 6, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: A minimum of 1-year experience as our Crew, or equivalent experience
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Involves lifting/moving objects such as boxes and furniture

  • Working with our Department Heads, coordinate setup/teardown within venue spaces;
  • Act as shift supervisor, overseeing production crew;
  • Work with IT Dept. to ensure A/V availability to event hosts and DJs;
  • Ensure any changes in layout to suites or rooms are reset to the venue’s original layout;
  • Train production crew in event operations and safe operating procedures, including setup/teardown; and
  • Maintain and update master inventory of QC owned and leased equipment.
Swag Crew Lead

SHIFTS RUN: Wednesday through Monday (August 7 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Prior to the conference start, Wednesday (Aug. 7, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: A minimum of 1-year experience as our Crew, or equivalent experience
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Involves lifting/moving objects such as boxes and furniture

  • Work with Dept. Head as shift supervisor, overseeing Swag Crew and conducting swag/reg inventories and sales;
  • Maintain Info Booth and answer general inquiries related to organization, swag, registration, and event operations;
  • Train Crew in point-of-sale and swag/reg operations.
IT Crew Lead

SHIFTS RUN: Tuesday through Monday (August 6 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Prior to the conference start, Tuesday (Aug. 6, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: A minimum of 1-year experience as our Crew, or equivalent experience
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: Background in Information Technology or Computer Networking

  • Work with IT Dept. Head and Venue Coordinator to understand on-site network config;
  • Keep on-site network operational for Back Office and Crew activity, troubleshoot issues throughout conference;
  • Ensure A/V availability at events;
  • Working with Production Dept, coordinate and assist in set-up/teardown of networked devices; and
  • Maintain inventory of all Queercon owned and leased network equipment, devices, etc.
QSEC Crew Lead

SHIFTS RUN: Wednesday through Monday (August 7 through 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Prior to the conference start, Tuesday or Wednesday (Aug. 6, 7, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: A minimum of 1-year experience as our Crew, or equivalent experience

  • Work with Director & Deputy of Security Dept., certified QSec Crew, other (volunteer) QSec Crew and hotel security to monitor conference activities and respond to emergency situations;
  • Isolate, manage and document (with Dispatch) any guest security or safety issues arising during the conference with high degree of discretion and customer-service focus;
  • Escalate qualifying issues to appropriate professional services personnel and/or hotel security (via Dispatch);
  • Isolate hazardous areas until staff or hotel security can respond;
  • Monitor access to restricted conference areas, including the Operations Center, service corridors and conference spaces not in immediate use; and
  • Oversee QSec Crew in crowd and line control for events, mixers, swag/registration and general spaces;
Dispatch

SHIFTS RUN: Wednesday through Monday (August 7 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Prior to the conference start, Tuesday (Aug. 6, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: A minimum of 1-year experience as our Crew, or equivalent experience

  • Monitor radio & camera feeds for concerns or issues, escalating when needed;
  • Notify and coordinate QSec Crew, Production Crew, Handlers, and other QC Crew for addressing any needs across Venue spaces;
  • Coordinate and communicate conference needs between QC crew and Venue staff, Venue/Hotel Security, Professional Services personnel, and external vendors/law enforcement/emergency personnel/etc., as appropriate;
  • Maintain radio equipment, ensuring check-in/out logs are completed, batteries charged, etc.;
  • Working with Staffing Manager, maintain shift schedules for the day, Crew check-in/out, operation manuals and Crew materials;
  • Log all incidents, actions taken, and other notable information immediately and with great detail;
  • Facilitate and provide status updates to requesting QC Crew Leads, Department Heads, and Venue/Hotel Staff; and
  • Maintain and update inventory of Dispatch items.

 

General Crew

These positions assist around the conference space in ensuring Queercon attendees feel safe and enjoy our events. The typical shift involves checking-in at our Operations Center and then reporting to your designated Crew Lead for briefing and assignment. Shifts tend to vary in duration by department, but are typically anywhere from 2 hours of donation (for Runners) to 6 hours (for Production). By nature of some of our events, you must be 18+ to apply.

Production Crew

SHIFTS RUN: Tuesday through Monday (August 6 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Tuesday through Friday (August 6 - 9, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: None, we welcome everyone to help!
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: May involve lifting/moving objects such as boxes or furniture

  • Work with Production Crew Lead to setup/teardown event spaces and respond to any issues throughout the conference;
  • Work with IT Dept. to set up / tear down A/V for event hosts and DJs and respond to any issues throughout the conference;
  • Ensure spaces are set as directed and are reset to the Venue’s original layout upon conference end; and
  • In coordination with Venue Staff, maintain orderliness of Queercon spaces, including reset of chairs/tables after talks or events, restocking of items in various spaces, and general tidiness of space.
Runner

SHIFTS RUN: Wednesday through Monday (August 7 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Tuesday through Friday (August 6 through 9, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: None, we welcome everyone to help!
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: May involve lifting/moving objects such as boxes and furniture

  • Work with Dispatch to move supplies around the event
  • As needed, maintain general tidiness of staff spaces
  • As needed, assist various departments during surge hours or events
QSEC Crew

SHIFTS RUN: Wednesday through Monday (August 7 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Tuesday through Friday (August 6 - 9, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: None, we welcome everyone to help!
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: May involve lifting/moving objects such as boxes and furniture

  • Work with QSec Leads to monitor conference activities and respond to emergency situations and concerns;
  • Isolate, manage, and document (with Dispatch) any guest security or safety issues arising during the conference with high degree of discretion and customer-service focus;
  • Escalate qualifying issues to appropriate professional services personnel and/or Venue Security (via Dispatch);
  • Isolate hazardous areas until Venue staff or Hotel Security can respond;
  • Monitor access to restricted conference areas, including the Operations Center, service corridors and conference spaces not in immediate use; and
  • Manage crowds and lines for events, mixers, Swag/Registration and general spaces, as directed by QSec Leads.
Swag Crew

SHIFTS RUN: Wednesday through Monday (August 7 - 12, 2019)
TRAININGS REQUIRED: Wednesday through Thursday (August 7 - 8, 2019)
EXPERIENCE NEEDED: None, but previous customer service or retail experience highly recommended
SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS: May involve lifting/moving objects such as boxes and furniture

  • Work with Swag Lead to conduct Swag/Reg transactions;
  • Keep swag/reg supplies stocked; and
  • Assist in inventory of Swag, Reg and Info Booth assets.