Reports to/Department: Under the direct supervision of the Assistant Curator of Animals, reports to Assistant Curator of Animals and assigned Keeper Mentor.

Position Description: The Brandywine Zoo is seeking a dynamic and engaging person to join our team! We are searching for a qualified and dedicated candidate to fill a 12 week Animal Keeper Internship. This is a part time, 22.5 hour per week (minimum) unpaid volunteer position. This person will work directly alongside senior zookeeper staff in the Animal Care Department of the Zoo. The Brandywine Zoo is proudly accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). The Animal Keeper Intern will be paired with a keeper mentor and will learn the daily routine of animal care in a particular area of the zoo. This unique opportunity will offer the chance to gain valuable knowledge and skills relevant to animal husbandry and welfare in AZA accredited zoological institutions. This is a hands-on position and the intern will be expected to be involved in all facets of our small zoo including animal nutrition, veterinary care, exhibit maintenance, facility maintenance and landscaping.

Intern Responsibilities:
To be performed year round in a variety of weather conditions.

  • Work onsite minimum of 3 full days per week (8am-4pm) for 12 weeks
  • Care, feeding and cleaning of animals and exhibits including sometimes strenuous physical activity
  • Diet preparation
  • Exhibit maintenance and repair
  • Basic grounds keeping and cleaning
  • Participate and deliver keeper talks and other public programming


  • Applicants must be working toward or already have a degree in Animal Science, Pre-Vet, Zoology, Wildlife Conservation, or other related degrees.
  • Applicants must have a strong interest in pursuing a professional career in animal husbandry and zoo animal management.
  • Applicants must exhibit consistent professional characteristics such as a positive attitude, ability to listen to instruction, ability to show initiative, emotional maturity and self-responsibility. • Applicants must work well as part of a team as well as independently.

This Opportunity is GOOD for People Who are:

  • Interested in pursuing a career in animal husbandry
  • Able to follow guidelines for safety and sanitation
  • Able to communicate and take direction well
  • Comfortable with public speaking

Intern Requirements:

  • At least 18 years old with valid driver’s license and reliable transportation
  • Provide proof of negative TB Test within the last 12 months before start date
  • Good physical condition: able to stand/walk for extended periods of time, kneel, crouch, and able to work in all weather conditions
  • Be able to lift up to 50 pounds
  • Must be fluent in the English language (verbal and written communication)
  • Good organizational skills
  • Able and willing to read and follow verbal and written work instructions and work independently
  • Willing to assist with administrative, customer relations, and housekeeping tasks and animal care
  • Able to commit to upholding all Zoo safety and personnel policies, and support the overall mission
  • Able to professionally represent the Brandywine Zoo in all interactions with visitors, staff, and other members of the community
  • Complete a project of the intern’s own design relating to animal husbandry or exhibit design, and approved by zoo staff, during the internship period
  • Three (3) day a week availability from June through August is required. Applicants with vacations or obligations outside the 4 days a week they are not scheduled will not be considered.

Training: Training will include animal husbandry, diet preparation, and various online modules in the San Diego Zoo Global Academy.

Required Time Commitment: Minimum 3 months. Three (3) day a week availability from June through August is required. Applicants with vacations or obligations outside the 4 days a week they are not scheduled will not be considered.

Shift Times: 8 am to 4 pm

Scheduling: 3 day/week minimum. Based on availability and agreed upon scheduled with Animal Curator and Animal Care Department.

Stipend: This is an unpaid internship.

Housing: Housing is not available for this position.


  •  Full access to the San Diego Zoo Global Academy course-list for the duration of the internship; certificate upon completion.
  • Networking opportunity and access to 180+ years of professional experience and knowledge via current zoo staff.
  • Potential training in numerous animal husbandry and zoo facility skills such as exhibit design and maintenance, animal nutrition, landscaping, small tool use, veterinary care, operant conditioning and public speaking.
  • Free access to all Delaware State Parks during internship or volunteer duration including Delaware Seashore and Fort Delaware.
  • Job shadow opportunities at nearby AZA zoos when scheduling permits.

To Apply: All volunteers must complete the DE State Parks Intern Application. Interns must also complete and pass a background check administered by DE State Parks. For more information, please visit

Questions: Email