Because You Live Here!

Internships

We are no longer accepting applications for Spring/Summer 2018 internships.

Thank you to all of this year’s applicants.

We will begin accepting applications for Fall internships in July 2018.

If you have any questions, email or call Samantha Russak at samantha@southwickszoo.com or 1-800-258-9182 ext 214

Internships with EARTH Ltd and Southwick’s Zoo are a rewarding experience which provides college students and recent college graduates the chance to learn and develop valuable skills while working in a unique setting.

We offer two internship opportunities each year: Spring/Summer Internships which begin in May and end in August, and Fall internships which begin in August and typically end in November.

*As part of your application we require you to upload your resume, cover letter, and a letter of recommendation. You may choose to have your recommendation letter emailed directly to samantha@southwickszoo.com; however, please note that your application will be considered incomplete until the letter is received.

Click to Apply

Requirements for All Internships

  • Must be at least 18 years of age.
  • Must be a student currently enrolled in college or a recent graduate.
  • Must be able to attend internship training orientation and zoo tour in May 2018.
  • Must be willing and able to work with children of varying ages, as well as adults, in a professional manner.
  • Must be able to take and follow directions to maintain a safe work environment for personnel, visitors, and the animals at the zoo.
  • All interns will be required to complete assignments during their internships, dependent on department.
  • All interns are required to create a project for, and attend, EARTH Awareness Day on August 4, 2018.
  • Interns are required to assist with EARTH Bash on June 22, 2018.

Benefits of All Internships

  • Discounts for food purchased at the zoo during work hours (does NOT apply to Galliford’s Restaurant).
  • Discounts for gifts purchased at the zoo gift shop.
  • Season’s pass to use for yourself and friends for entrance to the zoo on non-work days (after 2nd week of internship).
  • The opportunity to gain experience and work with a great group of people!

All Interns will be responsible to their direct supervisors, in addition to Samantha Russak, Director of Education and Betsey Brewer, Executive Director of Conservation, Education, & Research.

Education Internship(Summer Only)

Requirements for all Education Interns:

  • Must be available to work at least 3 days each week Monday – Friday. This position does not require weekend availability with the exception of Saturday, August 4th for EARTH Awareness Day.
  • Prior experience working with children preferred. Experience with animals is a plus, but not required.
  • Must be comfortable working with children of varying ages (grades K-9).
  • Students pursuing a degree related to education, biology, environmental science, or a related field are preferred.
  • Must be able to be in close proximity to hay and shavings and other possible allergens, such as: dust, mold, and grass.

Wild Adventure Summer Program Intern

(Summer Only)

Number of available positions: 1-2

Direct supervisors: Program Coordinator: Jan Weatherbee; Program Director: Bob Clark; Program Instructor: Pat Sullivan

Goal/Objective: Education interns play an active role with our Summer Wild Adventure Program and help guide and oversee students through their daily adventures.

Availability: Please note that this internship begins in mid-June, however Summer Program interns are still required to attend orientation in May. Must be available to work at least 3 days each week Monday – Friday. This position does not require weekend availability with the exception of Saturday, August 4th for EARTH Awareness Day.

Summer Programs offered by EARTH Ltd in 2018 are:

  • Adventures and Ecosystems (grades 4, 5, 6): June 25-June 29
  • Armadillos to Zebras (grades K & 1): July 2-July 3 & July 5-July 6
  • Animal Antics (grades 2 & 3): July 9-13
  • Adventures and Ecosystems (grades 4, 5, 6): July 16-20
  • Armadillos to Zebras (grades 1 & 2): July 23-July 27
  • Teen Zoology (grades 7, 8, 9): July 30-August 3
  • Animal Antics (grades 2 & 3): August 6-10

Wild Adventure Summer Program interns will:

  • Provide support to program staff and assist with daily tasks including: set-up/clean-up, planning, organization, and running activities
  • Enthusiastically engage students in a schedule of crafts, activities, animal encounters, and zoo tours
  • Ensure the safety of all students and help maintain a safe environment for students, zoo visitors, and the animals
  • Build and maintain a good rapport with students and parents
  • Encourage the children to develop an interest in and appreciation for science and learning
  • Chaperone students on excursions during the Teen Zoology week
  • Develop a project to present on EARTH Awareness Day

Animal Care Internships

Requirements for all Animal Care Interns:

  • Must be available to work at least 3 days each week, including at least one weekend day.

  • Must be able to lift 50lbs.
  • Must be able to stand for long periods of time and work in varying weather conditions including heat and rain.
  • Must be able to crawl, climb, and reach to clean low and “awkward” areas.
  • Must be able to be in close proximity to hay and shavings and other possible allergens, such as: dust, mold, and grass.

Earth Discovery
Center Intern

(Available Summer & Fall)

Number of available positions: 7-8

Direct supervisors: Head Education Coordinator: Lauren Culley; Education Coordinator: Sarah DiCarlo; Assistant Education Coordinators: Diana Waterman and Julie Richer

Goal/Objective: Interns at the EARTH Discovery Center learn proper animal handling techniques and assist staff with daily animal care, educational programs, and upkeep of the EARTH Discovery Center, Reptile & Insect Building, and various exhibits located throughout the zoo. Interns also interact with the zoo’s visitors and assist with other tasks as needed.

EARTH interns will:

  • Assist with animal husbandry for reptiles, small mammals, amphibians, invertebrates, and exotic birds (cleaning, food prep, etc.)
    **The EARTH department currently cares for over 30 reptile species, 15 mammal species, 6 invertebrate species, 5 amphibian species, and 3 bird species (over 120 individuals)**
  • Design and construct animal enrichment
  • Help with up-keep of the Discovery Center and Reptile & Insect building (raking, sweeping, mopping, dusting, etc.)
  • Transport animals throughout the zoo
  • Work as a conscientious educator interacting with zoo visitors and answering questions
  • Assist with planning and running educational programs such as Junior ZooKeeping
  • Present an animal or biofact at the “Ask a Zoo Crew” stage
  • Assist with preparation of live animal presentations as needed
  • Accompany staff on ZooMobile programs as needed
  • Assist in other zoo areas, such as the deer forest, as needed
  • Complete two assignments outlined in the EARTH Discovery Center intern manual
  • Select and research a topic to present a visual interactive display for EARTH Awareness Day

Bird Department
Intern

(Available Summer & Fall)

Number of available positions: 7-8

Direct supervisors: Head Bird Trainer: Danielle Poirier; Bird Trainers: Kristen Gagnon and Anjali Bhardwaj

Goal/Objective: Interns in the bird department will learn proper bird handling and training techniques, leaving with a working knowledge of avian behavior and classical and operant conditioning. Interns will learn to apply science based positive reinforcement to train a number of different husbandry, veterinary, and show behaviors. These skills will be developed by providing an exceptional level of care to our show and exhibit birds through relationship building, cleaning, feeding, and enrichment.

Bird interns will:

  • Clean cages of, and prepare diets for, show birds and exhibit birds
    **The Bird department currently cares for over 20 different bird species (over 30 individuals, in addition to over 100 parakeets and cockatiels in Parakeet Aviary)**
  • Assist with daily husbandry projects
  • Create and distribute enrichment to all birds on a daily basis
  • Train and handle a wide variety of parrots during husbandry and shows
  • Assist in training new show and husbandry behaviors
  • Provide a support role in educational presentations
  • Interact with the public before and after each show
  • Keep records of training, enrichment, and daily happenings
  • Develop and complete a staff approved enrichment project with a bird of your choice
  • Complete an independent, staff approved

Primate Department Intern

(Summer Only)

Number of available positions: 1-2

Direct supervisors: Head Primate Zookeeper: Michelle Breen; Primate Keepers: Ruth Mazeika, Britney Brosseau, Jess Lanchansky, Lauren Culley, and Sarah DiCarlo

Goal/Objective: Interns in the primate department will actively participate in animal care and help maintain all primate exhibits as well as additional exhibits throughout the zoo, along with some grounds maintenance.

Primate interns will:

  • Ensure the safety of zoo visitors, primate keepers, and primates
  • Assist with animal husbandry for numerous primates and other animals throughout the zoo (cleaning, food prep, etc.)
    **The Primate department currently cares for 18 primate species, 2 marsupial species, 4 large rodent species, and 2 reptile species (over 130 individuals)**
  • Design and construct animal enrichment
  • Help with upkeep of zoo grounds, including occasional collecting of trash bags at the end of the work day
  • Perform record keeping as needed
  • Develop and complete a staff approved enrichment project
  • Select and research a topic to present a visual interactive display for EARTH Awareness Day

HoofstockDepartment Intern

(Summer Only)

Number of available positions: 1-2

Direct supervisors: Head Zookeeper: Duane Long; Hoofstock Keepers: Kevin Racicot, Jonathon Smith, Jess Lanchansky, Josh Lobisser, and Mack Ralbovsky

Goal/Objective: Interns in the hoofstock department will actively participate in animal care and help maintain all hoofstock and big cat exhibits as well as additional exhibits throughout the zoo, along with some grounds maintenance.

Hoofstock interns will:

  • Ensure the safety of zoo visitors, hoofstock keepers, and animals
  • Assist with animal husbandry for numerous hoofstock and other animals throughout the zoo (cleaning, food prep, etc.)
    **The Hoofstock department currently cares for over 20 hoofstock species, over 15 bird species, and 6 large carnivore species (over 320 individuals)**
  • Help with upkeep of zoo grounds, including occasional collecting of trash bags at the end of the work day
  • Perform record keeping as needed
  • Develop and complete a staff approved enrichment or conservation project
  • Select and research a topic to present a visual interactive display for EARTH Awareness Day

FAQs

Common questions regarding our internships are answered below. If you have any additional questions, please email Samantha Russak at: samantha@southwickszoo.com

How long do the internships last?
Most Spring/Summer internships require 300 hours. Animal Care interns are required to work at least 3 days each week, including at least one weekend day each week. Each day is about 8 hours long. Wild Adventure Program and Business/Operations interns have different start/end dates and work schedules than Animal Care interns. Fall internships have a similar schedule, but we can be flexible with dates.
Do you only offer internships during the summer when the zoo is open?

Our spring/summer internships are the most popular, however we do offer internships during the fall and winter. These internships typically focus more on caring for animals during the winter and assisting with ZooMobiles. They involve less visitor interaction since the zoo closes for the season after October. Spring Internships go from March-May; Summer Internships go from May-August; Fall internships go from August-November. Spring animal care internship positions are limited, so please email samantha@southwickszoo.com if interested.

Who can apply?

Applicants must be currently enrolled in college or recent college graduates. Applicants must also be at least 18 years of age.

Can I get time off for vacation?

All requests for vacation time must be submitted at the start of your internship. The deadline for Spring/Summer interns to request vacation time is June 9. The deadline for Fall interns to request vacation time is two weeks in advance of vacation.

What if the position I apply for is already filled?

Certain departments have fewer openings than others. If your desired position is no longer available, and we feel you are well suited for another, we may offer you an internship in another department.

Are internships paid?

Our internships are unpaid and are completed for college credit only. However, they offer valuable hands on experience in a fun environment.

Do you offer housing?
We have limited housing nearby the zoo. There is a small rental fee.
Can I interview over the phone if I don’t live nearby?

We can perform interviews via Skype if you are unavailable to attend one in person. Please make a note of this when you submit your application.

What is EARTH Ltd. Awareness Day?

EARTH Awareness Day is an annual event at the zoo that takes place on the first Saturday of August. The purpose of the event is to give visitors a fun way to learn about various conservation and environmental issues. In addition to local organizations and vendors that will be located throughout the zoo, interns will be presenting their EARTH Awareness Day project. This project is a chance for interns to pick a topic that they are passionate about and share that passion with zoo visitors. The only “rule” for the project is that it needs to have an interactive component (such as a game, activity sheet, questionnaire, demonstration, etc.) so that visitors can be fully engaged with the presentation without feeling like they are simply getting a lecture. Staff in each department will help guide interns in developing and completing their projects throughout the duration of their internship.

(Note: EARTH Awareness Day is a requirement for all Spring/Summer interns)

APPLY HERE

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Visit us

OUR ADDRESS

2 Southwick Street, Mendon, MA

Call us

PHONE

Phone: (800) 258-9182

When

WORKING HOURS

Monday-Friday: 9:00 – 5:00

Contact Us!

Located at Southwick’s Zoo

2 Southwick’s Street

Mendon, MA 01756

800-258-9182

earth@earthltd.org

 

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