Internship Program

​​​​"The staff was great! They allowed me to be very hands on and were very helpful in answering any questions I had. They took extra time to make sure my interests were met."

— Katie R., Veterinary Hospital Animal Care/Nutrition Intern​

Recently named one of the Top 10 Non-Profit Internship programs in the United States by Vault*, the Indianapolis Zoo's Internship Program offers a unique opportunity for college students studying in the United States as well as recent graduates to become actively involved in the Zoo's conservation, research, education, and recreation efforts. Interns can enhance their knowledge and experience in various animal care and administrative roles.

Internships are open to current college students (who are at least at the junior level) studying in the United States, and recent graduates.

Interns work 20-40 hours per week for a minimum of 12 consecutive weeks. Positions are experience-based and are therefore unpaid. The Zoo can assist with arrangements for housing and transportation upon request.​

The deadline to apply for fall 2014 internships has passed. Please check back in the fall for more details about spring 2015 internships​

For more information, contact Adam Garrett in Volunteer Services at agarrett@indyzoo.com or (317) 630-2041.

* Vault is an international company that specializes in providing information for professionals and students seeking high-potential careers.

Internship Application Deadlines:

​Summer Semester (May-Aug.) ​​​

​March 10

Fall Semester (Sept.-Dec.)​

​July 10

​Winter/Spring Semester (Jan.-April)

​Nov. 10


 

"I feel privileged to have been an intern at the Indianapolis Zoo. Everyone has been so kind and willing to share their knowledge with me! I will cherish this experience and am very grateful for the opportunity."

—Cara W., Oceans Aquarist Intern​

Internship Opportunities

Internship opportunities vary by semester and are generally offered in these areas:

Conservation Education

Join our multi-disciplined team of educators, scientists, and conservationists to develop and implement a far-reaching series of programs that will have a measurable, significant and positive impact on wildlife and wild places around the planet, and help transform the City of Indianapolis into a community that embraces environmental stewardship as a core value. Conservation Education Program interns assist with education overnights and a wide variety of visitor programming.

Conservation Education Program Evaluation

Evaluation interns administer summative evaluations and analyze data for the Zoo's hands-on carts used in the Volunteer Naturalist program.

Encounters — Birds

Flights of Fancy, A Brilliance of Birds contains birds from around the world. Interns are given the opportunity to work with a variety of species, including budgies, cockatiels, lorikeets, helmeted guinea fowl, and Chilean and Caribbean Flamingos.

Marine Mammals/Carnivore Area

Working with one of the most diverse marine mammal collections in the U.S., this internship is ideal for individuals wishing to learn more about proper husbandry for keeping marine mammals and large carnivores in captivity. Interns in these areas of the Zoo may encounter Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, California sea lion, harbor seal, Pacific walrus, polar bear, Alaskan brown bear and Amur tiger. SCUBA and CPR certifications preferred.​

Oceans Biome

The Zoo's aquarium houses one of the nation's largest shark touch tanks! Interns may have the opportunity to work with numerous species including smooth dogfish sharks, a wide variety of reef fish, moray eels, jellyfish, seahorses, and penguins to name a few! SCUBA Certification is preferred but not required.

Oceans Water Quality Lab

The water quality lab monitors the water quality for all exhibits throughout the zoo that include water features. Interns work with the water quality lab supervisor, and assist with the collection and analysis of water samples and maintain daily water quality records. Opportunities to assist in animal related activities and perform routine exhibit care are also available. SCUBA Certification is preferred but not required.​

Veterinary Hospital Animal Care/Nutrition

Pre-Veterinary majors have the chance to assist the veterinary hospital keepers in providing care for the hospital patients and quarantine animals. Interns also assist the Commissary Staff in daily diet preparation, delivery and inventory management.

Plains/Forest Primates Area

This internship offers a unique experience working side-by-side with keepers. Species interns will encounter in the Plains area include African lions, African wild dog, cheetahs, Grant's zebras, greater kudu, Guinea baboons, reticulated giraffes, and white rhinoceros. Species in the Forest Primates area include several types of lemurs and white-handed gibbons.

Human Resources

Looking for some hand-on experience in human resources and non-profit management? This is the internship for you! Human resources interns assist with all aspects of human resources, from recruiting and training to administrative functions. Work closely with the human resources and volunteer services staff in this dynamic setting. Learn about the fast-paced world of human resources in an environment that is one of a kind!

Institutional Advancement

The Institutional Advancement Department creates and implements the Indianapolis Zoo's fundraising efforts. This internship position will provide substantial experience in non–profit development and management, grant writing, event planning, researching donor prospects, and solicitation strategizing, in addition to gaining valuable office experience working in one a zoo ranked among the Top 10 in the nation. Individuals with great attention to detail, previous experience with special events and team players are encouraged to apply.

Marketing/Special Events

Marketing/Special Events interns will work closely with the events and advertising manager in minor planning of special events and to implement comprehensive advertising plans.

Occupational Safety and Health

The Indianapolis Zoo is dedicated to the elimination of staff and guest injuries and illnesses through the implementation of the Zoo Safety and Health Programs, as well as maintaining compliance with all applicable federal, state and local regulations. Occupational safety and health interns will be asked to help lead this effort through performing safety and health inspections and assessing the grounds for safety and health hazards.

Public Relations

Help promote awareness of the world-class Indianapolis Zoo! Working with the media, the Zoo's social media strategies, video, press releases, and overall participation in the Zoo's public relations efforts is a sampling of the adventures that await you as a member of the public relations team. ​

Volunteer Management

Join this fast-paced department and take part in all aspects of volunteer management. Help recruit, select, train, motivate, and supervise our great group of nearly 600 individuals between the ages of 14 and 95. You will gain administrative and organizational skills, learn about non-profit management , and have fun, too!

Veterinary Student Externship, Preceptorship or Off-Campus Block

Veterinary students will observe and assist the veterinarians with clinical cases, treatments, immobilizations, surgeries, necropsies, and medical record keeping. The student will be required to complete and present a project during the externship. Externships are 40 hours per week for 4-6 weeks as per fourth year vet student requirements. Arrangements for externships must be made far in advance. Only enrolled vet students qualify for the externship. Click here to apply!