children's programs, Conservation, Education, Get Involved, Giving Back, Jobs, News, youth programs

Want to get closer to the penguins, other animals at the Detroit Zoo? Volunteer

Gentoos - Jennie Miller

If you are at least 18 and want to be surrounded by tuxedos this summer you can either take job at a butler academy or walk with the animals, talk with the animals, and, more accurately, work with the animals at the Detroit Zoo’s new Polk Penguin Conservation Center.

The zoo is looking for volunteers to work at the center, which is the largest of its kind in the world. No experience is necessary to volunteer and volunteers do not handle or feed the animals.

If naturally well-dressed birds aren’t for you there are plenty of other jobs available. Other opportunities include working at the zoo’s Arctic Ring of Life, Australian Outback Adventure and Wildlife Interpretive Gallery as well as at the Belle Isle Nature Zoo.

Polk Penguin Conservation Center

Rendering of Polk Penguin Conservation Center

“Certainly everyone will be talking about the amazing Polk Penguin Conservation Center, but not all volunteers will be working there,” says Volunteer Services Manager Linda Denomme. “From Bunnyville to Wild Lights, we expect to be busier than ever, and the anticipated increase in attendance this year and beyond makes all volunteer positions equally important.”

The first volunteer orientation session of 2016 will be held on Saturday, March 5 at 9 a.m. at the Detroit Zoo’s Ford Education Center. It’s the first of several monthly sessions though June. Advanced registration is required.

For those aged 15-17 there are still opportunities by way of the volunteer program. This allows those too young for normal duties, but have good communications skills and a working knowledge of biology and environmental science to join the Zoo Corps to engage visitors in hands-on activities designed to enhance their understanding of wildlife and wild places.

Teens with good communication skills who enjoy biology, environmental sciences or life sciences can be part of the “Volunteen” program. Those ages 15 to 17 can apply to become a member of the Zoo Corps to engage visitors in hands-on activities designed to enhance their understanding of wildlife and wild places.

Zoo aficionados, ages 16 or 17, can volunteer for the Counselor-in-Training program to work at the Summer Safari camps on June 20 and August 12. This will allow them to pass their interests on to the even younger generation as they teach kids K-8 about animals and nature with camp activities, games, crafts and tours.

Summer Safari Vets 3 To put into practice what they learned during camp, we challenged the students with a weeklong (pretend) case involving a female otter

Summer Safari Vets 3 To put into practice what they learned during camp, we challenged the students with a weeklong (pretend) case involving a female otter

“The Volunteer program is beneficial to teens who want to earn community service hours while working with a dynamic team from our education department and gain experience and skills that will allow them to thrive in a professional environment,” says Denomme.

Any young folks interested in the Zoo Corps have until April 1 to register. An interview process will follow, and teens selected for either program will be required to attend a three-hour training session. Those in the Counselor-in-Training program must volunteer for a minimum of two week-long Summer Safari camp sessions.

Be warned. Teenagers who are part of this program are expected to put in a minimum of 20 hours of work between June and October.

Visit www.detroitzoo.org and click on the “Volunteer” link under “Support” for descriptions of Volunteer and Volunteer positions, orientation dates and details, and to download an application. For further information, call (248) 541-5717 ext. 3802 or email volunteer@detroitzoo.org.

About the Author

One comment on “Want to get closer to the penguins, other animals at the Detroit Zoo? Volunteer

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *