Hemker Park & Zoo Internship Program
Hemker Park & Zoo internship program provides a learning opportunity for currently enrolled undergraduate or graduate students at an accredited college/university in the United States. Interns become actively involved in the Zoo’s animal care departments and educational deapartment.
History of Hemker Park & Zoo: What began as a simple dream in 1977 has grown to give families up close access to over 50 different species from around the globe. The mission of Hemker Park & Zoo (HPZ) is to highlight and enhance animals’ species and encourage environmental conservation through integrated partnerships and practical approaches to wildlife management. HPZ works hard to share the wonder and importance of conservation, as well as the critical importance of the role of animals within our ecosystem. Guests can expect to learn from their visit about our world while enjoying the over 200 animals that call HPZ home.
Animal Care Internship
Animal Care Interns will work directly with zookeepers and support staff to provide daily husbandry to a wide variety of species and do various tasks throughout the zoo including cleaning buildings, guest services, educational talks and assist with daily happenings at the zoo. The intern will be expected to complete a variety of reading assignments, participate in learning opportunities, and pass a set number of quizzes on various zoo keeping topics. Interns will learn about the natural histories, diet preparation, daily husbandry, training and enrichment, preventative health, and ZAA policies for a variety of species. Additionally, by the end of the internship program. The intern will perform at least one keeper chat and one enrichment project.
Top candidates for the must be eager to carry out our mission, learn, possess an excellent work ethic and practice above-average leadership skills. Interns are always expected to be professional, have great initiative, and work well with teammates. Ideally, interns will be seeking careers in zoo-keeping, biology, agriculture, and/or veterinary medicine. Preference will be given to those currently in college for a related field or those who have completed a bachelor’s degree within year of graduation. Interns will be supervised by various zookeepers, animal care supervisors and the general curator.
THIS INTERNSHIP IS A UNPAID POSITIONS. Intern must provide own transportation and lodging. Interns will work 20-40 hours/week for 16 weeks including weekends. Interns may request up to 2 days of leave from their regular internship schedules during their placements. HOWEVER, all interns are expected to work through school holidays or breaks (such as a fall break) and may be expected to work on state holidays (such as Memorial Day). If the student’s college offers credit for internships, it is the student’s responsibility to arrange for the credit.
Educational Internship provides experience in environmental interpretation and conservation education. Working with Hemker Park & Zoo’s Education team, interns have the opportunity to further develop skills in public speaking, research, writing, and guest interaction while engaging a diverse audience for a variety of education programs and on-grounds animal interpretation.
Education Department interns will be required to successfully complete program animal handling training with a variety of animals (small mammals, reptiles, amphibians, but not limited to this). Interns will be supervised by the Educational Director.
Educational Internship Responsibilities include:
Present on/off site program, zoo camps and other educational programs
Program animal handling
Food preparation and distribution
-College student or recent graduate (preferably in education, zoology, or related field)
-Student in good standing, GPA of 2.5 or higher
-Applicants must have completed at least 1 year of college.
-Capable of lifting 30lbs
-Willingness to work with both animals and the public
THIS IS AN UNPAID POSITION. Intern must provide own transportation and lodging. Interns will work 32 hours/week for 16 weeks including weekends. Interns may request up to 2 days of leave from their regular internship schedules during their placements. HOWEVER, all interns are expected to work through school holidays or breaks (such as a fall break) and may be expected to work on state holidays (such as Memorial Day).
Applications may not be considered if received after the following dates for an internship during that time frame. Typically, applications are considered three months prior to the deadline. Offers may be made to candidates before the deadline. Please, do not wait until the deadline to send in your materials.
• Summer Internship Program May-August Application
Deadline: April 4th
• Fall Internship Program August-November
Deadline: August 3
Qualifications: Must be able to perform physical challenges involved in the daily duties of the department including talking for long periods, walking throughout the zoo, lifting/carrying equipment weighing approximately 50 pounds. sitting, kneeling, stooping, crawling, twisting, reaching above head, pulling, bending, climbing stairs, and ladders. Candidate must be able and willing to perform all above duties outdoor in all weather conditions including heat, cold, rain etc.
To apply please submit a resume with cover letter, application, Letter of intent describing background, interest, goals and availability and 2 Letters of Recommendation via email at email@example.com or
mail to: Hemker Park & Zoo
PO Box 262
Freeport MN 56331
**Must submit all information at one time to be considered for an interview**