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Animal Management Areas

Interns/externs will develop an understanding of the goals of zoo ungulate conservation programs and basic principles of ungulate management in zoos. Duties may include food preparation, cleaning habitats and barns, habitat decoration and maintenance, social animal management (animal observations), record-keeping, and making environmental enrichment items and projects (horticulture work, grounds clean-up, research projects, facility/equipment maintenance, developing new graphics or educational materials, data analysis). Interns/externs will be restricted to tasks that do not require manipulation or handling of the animals.

Interns/externs in the Bird Department will work with a diverse collection of birds and look at captive management/conservation programs. Opportunities will include maintenance of bird exhibits, feeding and watering birds, assisting in record keeping, animal observations, diet evaluation, and environmental enrichment. Interns/Externs will be monitored by a full-time keeper and will have opportunities to work directly with the birds.

Interns/externs in the Herpetology unit will work with Herpetarium staff to develop an understanding of captive management and conservation programs for reptiles, amphibians and aquatics. Routines may include food preparation, cleaning on-exhibit and off-exhibit habitats, record keeping, and projects (redecorating, yard work in outdoor exhibits, data collection, etc.). There are two intern/extern positions within the Herpetarium, a general career-building opportunity and one specifically geared toward working with the endangered Ozark hellbender. Interns/externs will not work with venomous reptiles, large snakes or crocodilians.

Interns/externs will work closely with invertebrate staff. They will learn husbandry techniques for certain non-venomous arthropods. They may collect live specimens throughout the summer and curate a dead insect collection. Interns/externs will also work in the Butterfly Wing, the display hall and the outside garden area. The Monsanto Insectarium offers many new experiences to interns/externs who are selected.

The Saint Louis Zoo Institute for Conservation Medicine (ICM) takes a holistic approach to research on wildlife, public health and sustainable ecosystems to ensure healthy animals and healthy people. Research in the (ICM) focuses on those diseases known to affect threatened wildlife, with an emphasis on health challenges at the wildlife, domestic animal and human interface. The internship with (ICM) will provide students exposure to scientific research through database management, laboratory diagnostics and field veterinary medicine.

Interns/externs in Jungle of the Apes will work closely with great ape zookeepers to learn the basic principles of chimpanzee, gorilla and orangutan husbandry and daily care. Daily shadowing will allow you to follow each species’ routine and will include habitat cleaning, decorating, preparing environmental enrichment items, diet preparations and other varied rotational projects. Interns/externs are integral members of the ape keeper team. Interns/externs will be able to use their creativity to implement new ideas for various projects assigned to each intern group. Some of the past projects have been habitat furniture redecoration, enrichment device building and behavioral observations. There will also be opportunities to observe operant conditioning training sessions and observations of enrichment use. Interns/externs must have a negative TB test.

Jungle of the Apes interns/externs are required to work 2 full days (or 16 hours) a minimum per week.

The Life Support Systems intern or extern will help with water quality testing, operating systems, ozone safety, USDA regulations and automated controls. Hand tool usage and some power tool use will be expected. This program is aimed to provide a foundation to becoming a life support systems technician. Coursework in marine biology, applied chemistry, aquaculture or aquarium sciences is preferred.

Interns/externs in the Primate Department will be introduced to the basic principles of primate husbandry. Duties may include habitat cleaning and decorating, preparing environmental enrichment items, behavioral observations, diet preparation, and other varied rotational projects. Interns/externs must have a negative TB test.

Interns/externs will develop an understanding of animal care for a variety of species in the River’s Edge, including black rhinos, Nile hippos and red river hogs. Opportunities to work with the Asian elephants are not included as part of this internship/externship. Duties may include diet preparation, animal habitat cleaning and maintenance, animal welfare research and behavioral observations, environmental enrichment, and special projects as needed. Interns/externs must have a negative TB test prior to starting their internship or externship.**

**Must have had a TB test within the last 12 months and be fit-tested to wear an N-95 mask or respirator per the Zoo’s River’s Edge Personal Protective Equipment Protocol.

Interns/externs in the Sea Lion Sound facility will be introduced to the animal training field and the use of operant conditioning as an animal management tool as they work around the Zoo’s collection of pinnipeds. Opportunities may include daily diet prep; cleaning of holding areas, the stage and habitat tunnel; assisting with record keeping; participating with environmental enrichment; and interacting positively with Zoo guests. Interns/externs will work closely with full-time trainers and will have opportunities to observe training sessions, feedings, shows and behind-the-scenes tours. During the summer, interns/externs generally work 40 hours a week for 12 weeks, including weekends and holidays. In fall and spring semesters, interns/externs generally work 30-40 hours a week for 12-16 weeks and must be available to work weekends.

Veterinary preceptor interns must be in the final clinical year of a doctoral program in veterinary medicine and receiving credit from an accredited institution of higher learning. Veterinary preceptors will shadow veterinary staff and receive exposure to all aspects of zoo-based veterinary medicine. Students will learn through a problem-based approach to clinical veterinary medicine, and the experience will be driven by the clinical, active caseload at the time. Students must adhere to the policies and procedures of the Saint Louis Zoo and the expectations of the university/college agreement and professional curricula.

The veterinary technician intern position is open to credentialed veterinary technicians or students of AVMA accredited veterinary technology programs. This internship/externship is intended to help participants gain the skills necessary to work as a technician in the field of exotic animal medicine. Under the general supervision of the Animal Health team, applicants will perform the duties of a veterinary technician including (but not limited to): radiographs, lab work, patient care, in house and field procedures, administrative tasks, hospital maintenance, and assist with surgery and anesthesia. Hours are flexible; however, interns/externs are expected to work 20-30 hours per week, Monday – Friday. Applicants must adhere to the policies and procedures of the Saint Louis Zoo and the expectations of the university/college agreement and professional curricula. This position is unpaid and applicants are responsible for their own accommodations and transportation.

Non-Animal Related Areas

The intern/extern in the architecture field will have many responsibilities, including, but not limited to: programming, site analysis, concept design, specifications and materials research, construction document preparation, bidding and contract negotiation, estimating, construction administration, and energy modeling. A wide range of projects are being developed that include landscaping, exhibits, educational facilities, food service facilities, gift shops and site amenities.

The registrar intern/extern assists the registrar with ongoing animal records management projects. Most, if not all, projects are focused on quality control and data cleanup. Some routine work is required and includes prepping animal transaction files for microfilming, completing data entry functions in several databases and cross-checking documents for accuracy. The above-referenced intern/externship provides a bird’s-eye view of the Animal Division’s administrative functions. The registrar intern/extern must be computer literate with a proficiency in Windows, Internet and CD-Rom technology.

The Conservation Audience Research and Evaluation (CARE) Department supports the Saint Louis Zoo in making data-driven decisions involving a wide spectrum of audiences including guests, employees, communities within the St. Louis area, and global conservation partners. Using a variety of methodologies to answer a diverse range of evaluation and research questions about the human dimension of the Saint Louis Zoo’s work, CARE frequently collaborates with nearly every department within the Zoo, especially Education, Marketing, Human Resources, and Exhibit Design teams. The CARE intern/extern will conduct at least one complete evaluation/research study, which may include interviewing Zoo visitors, data entry, data analysis and report generation. As CARE is involved with multiple projects at the same time, interns/externs will also be exposed to a variety of other aspects and duties in the visitor studies field.

The Development intern/extern assists the Development office staff with ongoing fundraising and data management. Projects may include data entry, assisting with mailings and filing. Occasional assistance with donor-related events may be needed. The above-referenced intern/externship provides a bird’s-eye view of the Development office’s administrative functions. The Development intern/extern must be computer literate with a proficiency in Microsoft Office and have filing experience.

The Early Childhood Education intern or extern will assist in the research and design of activities and materials for our early childhood unit. They will also assist in the preparation of our early childhood classes and be trained as a facilitator in our Discovery Room. Interns and externs will interact with children and caregivers in the classroom and assist in the Zoo’s early childhood camp program. Some college coursework in education and science is required. Early childhood experience preferred. Good communication and customer service skills are a must. Creativity and flexibility are key.

The Saint Louis Zoo possesses an extensive collection of biological artifacts (biofacts), which are preserved animal remains such as bones, skulls, skins, feathers and other such objects. Biofacts are used for Zoo education activities. The biofact intern/extern assists the biofact curator and biofact committee in completing ongoing projects to better organize and maintain the collection. Duties include, but are not limited to, the following: biofact identification/inventory, database management, general biofact repair and processing and a study of skull measurements. The biofact intern/extern is also given the opportunity to shadow educational programs in other areas of the Education Department so that he or she can acquire a full understanding of the department. Interns and externs are also given their own projects to complete based on their interests. Interns/externs must have some biology/ taxonomy experience and an interest in skeletal anatomy.

Camp KangaZoo interns/externs will be immersed in the excitement of summer camp while helping the Zoo meet the needs of the campers and provide them an enriching educational experience. Interns/externs will give extra attention to children who need it; assist with setting up, taking down and leading activities with campers; model conservation behaviors; and help with other projects as assigned. Minimum of one year of college and a strong interest in animals preferred. Experience working with children and good communication and customer service skills required. Must possess energy, enthusiasm, a positive and caring attitude, and a team approach.

Camp KangaZoo Inclusion interns/externs will help to provide extra assistance to campers with special needs. Interns/externs may assist in many ways, depending on the child’s needs. Examples include: playing a quiet game with a camper who needs a break away from the group, helping a camper to understand instructions or helping with a craft, walking with campers on tours around the Zoo, helping with transitions, and helping campers to interact and make friends with others. Minimum of one year of college and experience working with children required. Experience with children with special needs preferred. Must possess a positive and caring attitude, willingness to learn, patience, and a desire to see every children succeed.

Interns/externs help with diet and food preparation and aid and engage Zoo visitors at Stingrays at Caribbean Cove. They will also support the Interpretive Program and team through other tasks as assigned by the Education Department, including time working with interpreters on grounds and helping with the Day with the Rays program and other programs throughout the Zoo. As an opportunity for growth and learning we will help in developing goals and outcomes for each intern/extern as part of their experience. The interpretation internship/externship requires much of the day spent outdoors in all weather, lifting, walking, spending long periods of time in and out of salt water environments, and engaging our guests in positive and entertaining ways.

The Specialty Camp intern or extern will assist the educators in preparing for and delivering 4-day long camp programs for our summer campers.

Interns/externs will interact with children generally ranging in age from 6 to 16 years old. The campers will come from a variety of backgrounds and have a variety of needs (physical, cognitive, and/or behavioral); interns/externs will need to be comfortable with all ages and abilities.

Interns/externs will help provide large group assistance in a classroom setting, on Zoo grounds, and in the field, plus potential one-on-one guidance as needed in a supervised setting. At no time will an intern/extern be alone with a camper.

Interns/externs will need to be comfortable working and walking in various weather conditions (heat, rain, etc.) as well as be comfortable with scientific exploration such as dissections, live animal interactions and outdoor activities such as hiking. Camps take place June through early August.

The WildCare Park Education summer intern/extern will assist education staff in the preparation and presentation of portions of family programs delivered at the WildCare Park. The intern/extern will be expected to interact with families with children aged 5 and older. All programs take place outdoors in various weather conditions (heat, rain, wind, etc.) The successful candidate will be comfortable interacting with the families in a group or one-on-one setting, will have a basic knowledge of native flora and fauna and will be comfortable guiding participants in the safe exploration of the outdoors.

The finance intern/extern assists the Manager of Revenue Operation in maintaining and tracking Zoo seasonal activities and events in Excel. Projects include late-night reporting and calculating revenue and expenses that occur during the season. Assist with tagging and inventory fixed assets. The intern/extern also assists with some cash room functions such as making banks and checking cash room reports regularly. The finance intern/extern must be computer literate with a proficiency in Windows and Microsoft Outlook.

The primary function of the Food Service intern is to assist the Zoo's Food and Beverage Management in determining nutritional information on meals/items we offer at the Zoo. Duties include clerical support, working closely with Food Service management on menu recipe research, working with Master Chef software, identifying potential menu food allergens and helping establish standard campus-wide recipes with the Executive Chef. Excellent organizational skills, ability to handle and prioritize numerous tasks, and the capacity to work independently are important. General knowledge and use of Microsoft Excel and Word are required. This internship will have a flexible schedule, and individuals may work days, evenings and/or weekends if desired.

FrogWatch USA™ is a nationally recognized, long-term citizen science monitoring program for frogs and toads. As a volunteer-based monitoring program, it gives citizens across the country an opportunity to be directly involved in gathering information that can ultimately lead to practical ways to stop amphibian decline. The FrogWatch intern/extern will:

  • Assist the Chapter Coordinator with volunteer training both on-site and off-site
  • Maintain our social media presence (the FrogWatch Facebook page and through our Twitter feed)
  • Monitor and review questionable volunteer data on FieldScope (the online mapping database for the FrogWatch USA program)
  • And assist with maintaining our external communications with our volunteers and the general public.

Interns and externs are also given their own projects to complete based on their interests. Interns/externs must have some biology experience and be willing to attend a FrogWatch volunteer training.

The Human Resources intern/extern assists with all aspects of the Human Resources Department. The intern/extern participates in the recruitment, interviewing and staffing of full-time, part-time and seasonal positions for all areas of the Zoo. The intern/extern learns how the Zoo administers its policies and procedures, including how it conducts disciplinary investigations and meetings. The intern/extern becomes more familiar with how to research, comprehend and apply employment and labor laws. The intern/extern helps with administrative tasks, such as filing and data entry as assigned.

The Palm Oil Task Force addresses the issue of palm oil, which can be found in everyday products. The Zoo is working to reduce its dependency on non-sustainable palm oil and educate both staff and visitors on how they can impact wildlife habitats around the world with their daily choices.

The Palm Oil Task Force intern/extern will assist with conducting an inventory of all products used on Zoo grounds, especially chemicals and non-food products, to determine if they contain palm oil and whether that palm oil is sustainable. The intern/extern will also research equivalent products that have no palm oil or sustainable palm oil in them. The intern will also be involved in public palm oil education through public outreach/tables/chats and assisting in events on Zoo grounds that feature palm oil education (Boo and the Zoo, Wild Lights, Jungle Boogie, etc.).

During the intern/externship, the individual will learn where palm oil comes from, common names for it, the difference between sustainable and non-sustainable palm oil, and how to determine if it is in a product. Throughout the internship/externship, the individual will learn how the Saint Louis Zoo Palm Oil Task Force is impacting conservation and how he/she can act locally and have a global impact on conservation.

This position is seasonal and only available during our fall and summer intern cycles; this timeframe is when most of our palm oil-related events and tabling opportunities are present.

The primary function of the Partnership Marketing intern/extern is to assist the Partnership Marketing Manager with the preparation, implementation, and execution of our Corporate Partnerships and fundraising events. Duties include some clerical support, assisting with sponsor recaps, data entry, event promotions and on-site activations, phone coverage, and other clerical duties as assigned. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, customer service experience, ability to handle and prioritize numerous tasks, and capacity to work independently are desired. Computer literacy, general knowledge and use of Microsoft Excel, Word and PowerPoint are a requirement. This intern/externship will have a flexible schedule that may require working evenings and weekends.

Interns will develop an understanding of the Zoo's purchasing role, supply chain management in a decentralized environment, RFP/RFQ/quote processes, supplier diversity M/WBE goals and strategy. Duties may include attending pre-bid and bid opening meetings, outreach events, tier 1 & 2 record keeping including tracking vendor spend, confirming payments and reporting to enhance key performance indicators. This internship will provide students exposure to supplier diversity metrics through database management and collaboration with external departments and vendors.

The Saint Louis Zoo is like a small city with all of the challenges of a city of 3 million. Taking an internship/externship with the Safety & Risk Management Department will allow the student the opportunity for exposure to the field in a unique setting across multiple industries—construction, food service, retail, hospitality and, of course, the zoological setting. While it’s difficult to explain a “typical day,” each day brings new experiences, challenges, and opportunities to learn and connect with people, animals, and the environment. The successful candidate is expected to attend and participate in meetings and training classes, work Zoo events, perform inspections, and work with policies. Creating, leading and evaluating emergency drills is expected. Experience with Microsoft Office is important; some data entry is required. While not required, some education or workplace experience in safety and/or risk management is preferred.

The Sales & Catering department works to sell, plan, execute, and cater private events (such as company picnics, family reunions, weddings, etc.) at the Saint Louis Zoo. Intern duties will include administrative support, assisting event production and execution, business development, research, data entry, inventory, and other clerical duties as assigned. High school diploma or equivalent required. One to two years of marketing, hospitality management or communications studies preferred. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, customer service, ability to handle and prioritize tasks, and the capacity to work independently are desired. Computer literacy, general knowledge and use of Microsoft Excel and Word preferred. Candidates must be able to lift and carry up to 25 lbs for 50 yards, stand and walk for extended periods of time, and work outdoors in all weather conditions. Flexible schedule may require working some evenings, holidays and weekends.

The primary function of the Special Events intern/extern is to assist the Zoo’s Special Events office staff. Duties include assisting with pre-event planning, event production and execution, mailings, data entry, volunteer coordination, event promotions, phone coverage, inventory and other clerical duties as assigned. Excellent communication and interpersonal skills, customer service experience, ability to handle and prioritize numerous tasks, and the capacity to work independently are important. Computer literacy, general knowledge, and use of Microsoft Excel and Word a must. This intern/externship will have a flexible schedule that may require working evenings and weekends.

The Sustainability intern/extern will focus on energy efficiency and waste reduction through several projects. Other tasks as assigned may include assistance with Green Dining Alliance certification, internal Green Team meetings and special events. Applicants must be enrolled in college-level courses in a sustainability-related field. The intern/extern should have a good, basic understanding of the principles of sustainability, including energy efficiency and waste reduction, recycling, and composting. Experience in energy modeling and greenhouse gas inventories is preferred. Great organizational and communication skills (written and verbal) are required.

Unique opportunity for a student to learn and practice skills connected with visual merchandising, graphic placement, fixture design, floor sets, plan-o-grams, product development and many other retail functions. Student must have an understanding of basic visual merchandising or soft skills in design. It is preferred that they understand basic functions of retail operations.