New Jobs

Shedd Aquarium

Sparking compassion, curiosity and conservation for the aquatic animal world.

Summer Internship: Marine Mammals


These internships are designed to be career learning experiences that offer exposure to animal husbandry, positive reinforcement training, animal behaviour and the chance to complete an individual observational or research project. Interns master food prep, record keeping and the basics of caring for and feeding animals. They have opportunities to exercise leadership and communication skills and join a network of professionals caring for animals in Chicago and across the country.


The Marine Mammals department at Shedd Aquarium consists of four animal teams. Three teams focus on birds and marine mammals, and one focuses on our interactive animal ambassador program. Interns support the daily operations of the department.

We offer two exciting internship opportunities, one focused on marine mammals and one focused on animal ambassador programming. Marine mammals interns help care for Pacific white-sided dolphins, beluga whales, northern and southern sea otters, California sea lions, three species of birds of prey, and rockhopper and Magellanic penguins. Animal ambassador program interns work with various species of birds, reptiles, invertebrates and terrestrial mammals.

Responsibilities & Duties

  • Demonstrate commitment to Shedd’s vision, mission and values.
  • Cleaning: A significant portion of time is spent maintaining a clean and healthy environment for the animals. This includes thorough cleaning and disinfection of animal habitats and reserve spaces, kitchens and food prep areas, and animal dishes.
  • Food preparation: All interns spend a few hours each shift helping to prepare diets for all the animals. This includes thawing, inspecting, weighing and cutting various food types as well as formula preparation and vitamin administration. Animal ambassador program interns also prepare live feeder insects.
  • Record keeping: Interns assist in daily record keeping, helping to document diets consumed, cleaning chores, behavioural observations, session notes and enrichment details.
  • Special project: After mastering the basic chores of the department, each intern is assigned a special project to complete during the internship. A portion of time each day is allocated to the project and interns present their findings in a PowerPoint presentation at the end of the term. Projects might focus on animal enrichment, animal behaviour, or data analysis, based on the current needs of the department.
  • Marine mammal interns assist in training sessions and aquatic presentations throughout the day. Interns perform a variety of tasks during animal training sessions and aquatic presentations, including operating manual and hydraulic doors, setting up and breaking down equipment, managing guests and assisting trainers during animal training sessions.
  • Animal ambassador program interns assist in public presentations. Interns assist in public encounters, managing crowds, answering questions and handling small animals in front of a group of guests.
  • Other projects as assigned


Desired Majors: Preference is given to those who are or have studied marine science, psychology, animal care, or a related field.

Desired Year in School: Current enrolment in a degree program or graduation from one.

Other Skills/Characteristics:

  • At least 18 years old.
  • Willingness to support Shedd’s mission and represent the organization well to all guests.
  • Commitment to high-quality work and ability to follow directions to maintain high standards of care and cleanliness.
  • Strong work ethic, positive attitude and genuine curiosity about animal care and training.
  • Ability to work well independently and with a team.
  • Ability to communicate openly and professionally, willingness to ask questions and to collaborate toward solutions.
  • Ability to regularly work all weekend days and holidays as well as late-night shifts when assigned.
  • Ability to lift objects of 40 pounds or more as well as bend, crouch, squat and carry heavy buckets as needed.
  • Marine mammals interns will be exposed to cold temperatures and saltwater on a daily basis.
  • Animal ambassador program interns will be exposed to cold and warm temperatures, water, fishes, and animal fur and dander on a daily basis.

Time Commitment

  • Three six-month terms each year, with new terms beginning in early January, mid-May and early September. See application form for specific submission deadlines.
  • Marine mammals intern work three 11-hour days a week, including one or both weekend days.
  • Animal ambassador program interns work four eight-hour days a week, including one or both weekend days.
  • Attendance at three evening seminars is encouraged but not required.
  • Set schedule based on intern availability.

Summer Application Deadline: March 1st



How to Apply

Shedd Aquarium
1200 S. Lake Shore Drive
Chicago, IL 60605



The Toledo Zoo

Marine Mammal Training and Enrichment Internship

Reports to:      Curator of Behavior Husbandry

Schedule:        5 days per week, 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM

May-August 2019

Application deadline: February 15, 2019

Internship Overview:

This internship is designed for college students or recent graduates interested in pursuing a career in animal training, zoo keeping or animal behavior.  Interns will work directly with the Curator of Behavioral Husbandry and animal keepers to learn the principles of animal training and enrichment through practical application, research and hands-on work with the animals.  This internship will focus on seal training and polar bear enrichment. The intern will participate in animal training sessions and schedule, implement and evaluate daily polar bear enrichment.  The intern will also conduct behavioral research to monitor polar bear behavior and evaluate the effectiveness of enrichment.

This internship is unpaid and housing is not provided.


  • Junior or Senior in college or recent graduate with a major in Biology, Animal Behavior, Psychology, Zoology or other related field
  • Strong willingness to learn, positive attitude, and team mentality
  • Previous hands-on work with animals
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Excel preferred

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Develop, coordinate and implement daily enrichment for polar bears
  • Prepare seal diets and participate in daily feeding/training sessions
  • Develop enrichment schedules for several species
  • Construct and implement enrichment items for various species
  • Conduct behavioral observations
  • Data entry and analysis

To apply please email a cover letter, resume and 3 references to:

Beth Posta

Curator of Behavioral Husbandry

The Toledo Zoo

419-385-5721 ext. 2051

How to Apply

The Toledo Zoo
2 Hippo Way
Toledo, OH 43609



Audubon Nature Institute

Marine Mammal Training (Sea Lions) Intern (Zoo)

The Sea Lion Department is seeking applicants for 2019 internship positions in marine mammal training and care.

Internship Overview:

The Basic Sea Lion Internship at Audubon Zoo in New Orleans, Louisiana is designed for college students or recent college graduates who are interested in a career in marine mammal training. Our interns work side-by-side with experienced marine mammal trainers and educators. Interns will be exposed to all aspects of the daily care and training of California sea lions. We are currently seeking interns for our SPRING internship that will run from January/February – March/April. For qualified hard working candidates there is the opportunity to take part in the Advanced Sea Lion Internship following the completion of the Basic requirements.


  • Assist in diet preparation, exhibit maintenance, cleaning, water quality testing and other section responsibilities.
  • Assist trainers in training and husbandry sessions.
  • Implement enrichment for sea lions and design original enrichment.
  • Complete weekly study guides and quizzes.
  • Participate in lecture series given by the training staff.
  • Speak on microphone during daily educational presentations in the Sea Lion Theater.
  • Can earn the opportunity to feed and ask for basic behaviors.


  • Must be at least 18 years old.
  • Must have successfully completed one semester of college.
  • Must be able to afford housing, food, and transportation to and from the zoo as this is a full time (40 hours per week) unpaid internship.
  • Must be available for the full 14 week internship period.
  • Must be able to lift 50 pounds and work in all weather environments (extreme heat and humidity, rain, and freezing temperatures).
  • Must provide a current negative TB test prior to start date.
  • Must be able to acquire housing on own.
  • Must be a self motivated, upbeat, and hard working individual

Applications deadlines are as follows:

Spring (Feb – May)           December 15, 2018
Summer (May – Aug)        March 15, 2019
Fall (Aug – Nov)                June 15, 2019
Winter (Nov – Feb 2020)    September 15, 2019



How to Apply

Send cover letter and one page resume via e-mail to, Attn: Emily Dombrowski. Please write “Basic Internship” in the subject line. In the event their preferred placement has been filled, qualified applicants may be referred to other Audubon departments. By submitting application materials, the candidate agrees to release their information to our internship staff.

Audubon Nature Institute
6500 Magazine St.
New Orleans, LA 70118
Phone: 5043782525


New England Aquarium

Aquarist I, Penguins

Boston, MA 02110

New England

Generally responsible for the appearance and maintenance of all assigned exhibits and support areas (including off-site facilities), providing proper husbandry for the specimen collection, and assist in supervising assistant aquarists and volunteers. Assists in specimen acquisition for assigned exhibits, setting up and creating new exhibits, and performing other related curatorial duties.


  • This position is Full-Time, Regular.
  • Tuesday – Saturday approximately 40 hours weekly, 8:00am – 5:00pm.


  • Provides daily care of assigned exhibits, holding systems, support spaces, and life support systems according to established standards of appearance and animal care.
  • Makes daily observations of specimens for health assessment according to established norms of animal’s behavior and appearance. With direction of the supervisor and the Animal Health & Environment Quality Departments, establishes appropriate dietary regime, medications, supplements, and enrichment requirements.
  • Maintains written records and submits entries via NEAq’s specimen database system TRACKS e.g. accessions, dispositions, moves, behaviors, mortalities) in accordance with proper husbandry practices and institutional policy.
  • Manages water quality and environmental parameters in assigned exhibits and holding tanks in conjunction with the Animal Health and Environmental Quality Departments.
  • Acquires specimens for assigned exhibits by assisting with the following: organizing collecting trips, arranging for exchanges, breeding, rehabilitating and or specimen purchases from approved sources.
  • Manages life support systems and participates in the design, upgrade and installation of such systems.
  • Assists in directing the activities of Assistant Aquarists, interns, and volunteers.
  • May be required to work typical weekend days, some holidays, some nights, and respond to emergencies at all hours.
  • Depending on assignment, may be routinely expected to perform public presentations regarding animals and exhibits in various locations.
  • Performs other position-related duties, as assigned.


Minimum Training and Experience

  • Requires Bachelor’s degree and 3 months experience in general animal husbandry.
  • Major or concentration in science preferred.
  • Previous experience with penguin husbandry and breeding preferred.
  • Experience with large animals or birds preferred.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Internationally recognized SCUBA diving certification
  • Ability to obtain Medical Examiner’s authorization to SCUBA dive in accordance with NEAq Diving Program
  • Valid Driver’s License and the willingness to drive a 24′ Box Truck.
  • Ability to obtain Medical Examiner’s Certificate in accordance with Motor Carrier Safety Regulation (49 CFR 391.41-391.49)
  • Demonstrates the ability to set own priorities; work without constant supervision, and without the need to consult others on a routine basis.
  • Has leadership and organizational abilities
  • Interfaces with colleagues, media and the public in a professional manner.
  • Excellent communications and public speaking skills.
  • Aquarium mechanical skills are preferred.
  • Basic computer experience.
  • Good driving record.

For more information and to apply online please visit:



Marine Mammal & Sea Turtle Rescue Intern

Boston, MA 02110 (Central area)

Apply for this internship here:


Time commitment: THREE Full Days Per Week (8:00am – 6:00pm; can extend based on volume of patients).
Winter: 125 Hours total

Spring: 12-16 Weeks

Fall: 12-16 Weeks

Summer 12-16 Weeks


Marine Animal Rescue responds to calls to provide medical treatment for whales, dolphins, porpoises, seals and sea turtles. Established in 1968, the Marine Animal Rescue Team has responded to thousands of calls providing medical treatment to stranded, injured and diseased marine animals throughout the New England coastal region. Interns provide support for Rescue staff in all aspects of the program.

This internship can be done for college credit.


  • A significant amount of cleaning is required in order to maintain the hospital environment
  • Follow standard quarantine protocols
  • Food preparation and feeding of animals
  • Restraining animals for treatments and injections
  • Monitoring behavior and health of animals
  • Maintaining records including water quality, daily food intake, swim charts and treatment sheets
  • Interns may have the opportunity to assist with necropsies and help with animals in the field


  • Previous animal handling experience
  • Must be in good physical condition and able to lift 50 pounds
  • Must be able to perform significant cleaning tasks daily
  • Must be able to work independently and as part of a team
  • Must be at least 18 years of age and have access to a car

Note: This internship is extremely competitive; pay close attention in addressing all of the position requirements and qualifications in your cover letter. This position is not available for January term.

This position is not located in Boston and is at our Animal Care Center located along the Fore River in Quincy. Transportation to this facility is easiest by car but one can also reach the facility by public transportation. Public transportation requires taking the Redline to Quincy Center, transferring to bus, and walking about 5 minutes.

Apply for this internship here:

Job Type: Internship


Tips and Advice

Being an animal trainer is very rewarding and it gives a high level of satisfaction, but we also know that trainers must have flexible schedules to accommodate the needs of the animals.

It is important you to bear in mind that in many cases in order for you to get a job, you must be willing to relocate.

Are you ready for this?

Are you just starting?

I recommend you have animal related work experience

This is a great opportunity to start developing your skills for animal care, practicing team work and at the same time you could develop experience in animal rescue and rehabilitation.

You can also make a difference in animal sanctuaries and with companies with missions to improve animal welfare and prevent animal abuse.

On this link, you can find different opportunities

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in the UK

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in Europe 

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in Africa

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in Asia

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in the USA

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in South America

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in New Zealand

Voluntary Jobs with Animals in Australia


seel y yo