Reports to/Department: Under the supervision of the Education Curator, reports to Program Animal Lead Keeper.

Position Description: Brandywine Zoo is seeking a dynamic and engaging person to join our education team!  We are searching for a dedicated candidate to fill a 1 year internship. This person will serve as an Educator and work in the Education Department of the Brandywine Zoo.

The roles of the Education Program Animal Apprentices are twofold; program animal husbandry and delivering education programs. This person will lead informal and formal education opportunities both on and off site for school programs, family programs, workshops, informal guest encounters, serve as an educator for spring and holiday Zoo Camps, deliver Reptile Shows and other live animal demonstrations, or assist with special events. Reptile shows are throughout the peak season (May-September) and average 75 people per program, so comfort with public speaking while handling animals is a must.

The other half of this internship is providing daily husbandry for the Zoo’s collection of almost 40 program animals. Apprentices in this position will also be trained in daily program animal husbandry, including program mammals, reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates. Husbandry includes cleaning of enclosures and exhibits, feeding, handling, medicating, weighing, and record keeping.

This position will require working weekends, with typically scheduled days off occurring mid-week. It will also require working holidays and evenings on occasion. Shifts for this position are usually 8 am – 4 pm, unless there is a special event.

Intern Responsibilities:

  • Delivery of on and off-site programming, in both formal and informal settings.
  • Management of databases and records, registering participants for programs and tracking program and animal husbandry data.
  • Performing daily husbandry for a variety of reptiles, amphibians, mammals and invertebrates.
  • Able to follow protocols to prevent the spread of zoonotic diseases and maintain high levels of animal safety.
  • Time management and ensuring all aspects of the show operation is running efficiently. This includes strong communication with Education staff.
  • Ability to work weekend days and flexible hours as schedules dictate.

Qualifications: 

  • Must be comfortable handling a variety of live animals, including reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates and mammals, and knowledgeable about their natural history.
  • Must have good time management skills, with the ability to complete designated tasks in a punctual manner.
  • Attention to detail is necessary for making observations, recording data and completing day-to-day husbandry tasks.
  • Applicants must be working toward or already have a degree in Biology, Psychology, Animal Science, Pre-Vet, Wildlife Conservation, or other Biological Sciences.
  • Must have an interest in working with the general public; especially children ages 4-13.
  • Must exhibit consistent professional characteristics such as a positive attitude, ability to show initiative, emotional maturity and self-responsibility.
  • Comfortable with public speaking.
  • Ability to work independently and problem solve.

This Opportunity is GOOD for People Who:

  • Interested in animal husbandry
  • Able to folow guidelines for safety and sanitation
  • Comfortable with public speaking
  • Able to professionally display program animals to the public

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 25 pounds
  • Must be fluent in the English language (verbal and written communication)
  • Overall GPA must be 2.5 or higher
  • 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.
  • 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, and approved by zoo staff, during the internship period.

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

Required Time Commitment: 12 months

Shift Times: 8am – 4pm daily, weekends required with some evening shifts as scheduled.

Scheduling: 37.5 hours/week

Stipend – A stipend of $100/week will be provided for the duration of the internship. Interns are not employees of the State of Delaware- they are considered volunteers and are not paid for their service. Interns may elect to receive a stipend to help cover expenses incurred during their volunteer intern service. The stipend is a fixed amount of $100 per week for service of 30 – 35 hours per week or $50.00 per week for service of between 20 – 29 hours/ week paid biweekly as a direct deposit into the Intern’s bank account.

Housing – Some housing is available, at no fee, for interns providing full-time hours (30 or more per week). If selected for housing, an intern will share a house, duplex or dorm facility with other interns.

Benefits

  • 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 https://destateparks.com/Volunteer/Positions.

Questions: Email Danielle.Levredge@state.de.us