Adult Volunteers

You can work with animals and the public, help with clerical needs, and more.

Exhibit Guide Program

The Exhibit Guide Program supports the Zoo’s educational and interpretive needs in specific areas within the Zoo. For the 2017 Exhibit Guide Program, those areas include our Aquarium, Africa!, and Koala exhibits.

Exhibit guides will be needed from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day and will perform a variety of functions, including, but not limited to:

  • Touch Tank Support: Educate visitors about sharks, rays, fish and a variety of aquatic invertebrate species. Answer questions and maintain a safe and positive environment for both animals and visitors.
  • Engage visitors in conversations on our Africa! exhibit, including those waiting for the giraffe feeding deck and those watching animals from the overlook.
  • Educate visitors and answer questions in our Koala exhibit. This could also include visitors waiting to enter the exhibit.
  • Utilize animal artifacts in related areas to enhance visitor experiences.
  • Provide support to other education programs ore vents, as needed.
  • Provide support to our visitors throughout the Zoo including answering questions, providing directions on exhibits and facilities, and contacting Zoo Staff when needed.

Exhibit Guides will receive an orientation covering the Zoo Volunteer Handbook. In addition, Exhibit Guides will attend a comprehensive training program identifying the major topics of importance related to the targeted exhibits, as well as walk-through of those areas. Finally, Exhibit Guides will receive basic training on interpretive programming and informal public interaction.

Time Commitment
• Complete the required training program.
• Give at least forty (40) hours of service, including the training process, between orientation and Monday, September 4, 2017.
• Schedule volunteer time in advance.
• Inform the Volunteer Department if you can not make a scheduled shift.
We are currently accepting applications! Click the link to download a volunteer application.
Download a Volunteer Application

Concert Ushers

The Concert Usher Program supports the Toledo Zoo Summer Concert Series. Ushers will perform a variety of functions, including, but not limited to:

  • Assisting guests to locate their seats
  • Addressing any guest-related questions or concerns
  • Enforcing Zoo policies at concerts and providing a safe environment for our guests
  • Helping to take down the chairs and stack them at the end of the concert


Concert Ushers will be given an orientation regarding general Zoo policies. The orientation will also include an introduction to the Amphitheatre, its layout, and instructions regarding your responsibilities as Ushers.

Dress Code:

Concert Ushers are required to wear a plan, sleeved white t-shirt (thicker than undershirt), polo shirt, or button-down shirt, either short-or-long sleeves. In addition, ushers must wear black pants or shorts and closed-toed shoes.

Time Commitment:
• Complete a volunteer application, submit to an interview and attend an orientation
• Support a minimum number of concerts for the season. The minimum requirement is based on the total number of concerts for the season. As of now, Ushers will be required to volunteer for 4 of the 6 concerts currently slated for the 2016 season. Please note: if additional concerts are added, then this requirement may increase. The full listing of our summer concerts may be found at
• Ushers must arrive 30 minutes before gates open and volunteer through the tear-down process of the show. Ushers are typically dismissed around 11:00 p.m.

Volunteer positions for the 2017 Live Nation Concert Series have been filled. Please check back in spring 2018 for more information.

Zoo Educator Volunteers

We are currently accepting applications for our fall 2017 Zoo Ed class. Application deadline is Monday, September 4, 2017.

The Zoo Educator program is a year-round, long-term volunteer opportunity for adults, ages 18 and above, who have great people skills and a deep love of animals, nature, and conservation.

Zoo Eds provide informal, spontaneous interactions, including but not limited to:

  • Talking with Zoo visitors in front of exhibits
  • Assisting with activity and biofact tables (biofacts are hides, skulls, or related items)
  • Demonstrating live animals in open areas or near exhibits
  • Off-grounds activities at community events, etc.

Zoo Eds also provide a variety of educational programs, both on and off Zoo grounds. Programs may be planned, following structured curricula, such as:

  • On-grounds programs for school and assorted youth groups, centered around specific topics
  • Scripted interpretive programs at key exhibits
  • Structured animal demonstrations for youth and community groups

All of our education opportunities reinforce a love and respect for animals and nature, and our role as responsible stewards for our fragile world.


Zoo Eds must complete a half-day orientation and series of class sessions that cover every area of the Zoo. Training is provided by department staff and includes information about our exhibits, our animals and our unique heritage, as well as teaching and communication techniques. Zoo Eds may also receive specialized animal handling training for specific programs and opportunities. The initial training series begins each September.

Time Commitment
• Complete the training including orientation and 8 additional classes. Sessions are offered on Thursdays and Sundays throughout the fall.
• Give at least eighteen (18) hours of education service every 3 months
• Attend at least six (6) Zoo Ed Meetings per year. The Zoo Ed Meetings are held on the second Wednesday of each month from 7:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
• Complete 10 hours of continuing education per year.

Clerical Volunteers

Clerical Volunteers provide invaluable support to many of the Zoo’s offices, including Marketing, Membership/Development, and Education. Clerical Volunteers will perform a variety of functions, including, but not limited to:

  • Stuffing envelopes and preparing mailings
  • Filing and alphabetizing various documents
  • Photocopying various documents
  • Organizing supplies and materials
  • Performing other functions as necessary

Clerical Volunteers can enjoy the opportunity to volunteer in relaxed, small-office environments with deeply appreciative staff members.

Clerical Volunteers will be given an orientation regarding general Zoo policies, as well as the benefits of volunteering at the Toledo Zoo. More detailed, hands-on training will be provided by specified office staff in the area of your placement.

Time Commitment:
Clerical Volunteers are required to:
• Give approximately two to four (2 – 4) hours of service per week
• Schedule volunteer time in advance with appropriate staff
• Inform staff if you are unable to make a scheduled shift or will be absent for an extended period of time

Current clerical volunteer positions have been filled. Please check back for more information.


We offer a variety of internships for college juniors and seniors, as well as recent graduates. See our Internship page for positions and application information.

Job Shadowing

Job Shadow opportunities are available to high school juniors and seniors and college students on a limited basis. Contact our Volunteer Department for more information.

More Information?

For more information on any of our positions and opportunities, contact our Volunteer department at or 419-385-5721 ext. 2045

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