- Get Involved
The ZOOTeen program offers volunteer opportunities to students between the ages of 13 and 17 who have a strong interest in education, animal science and conservation. It is a seasonal/year-round program that offers youth a range of opportunities.
- Host education activity stations covering a variety of animal topics
- Help in Nature’s Neighborhood, staffing the animal contact yard and other areas
- Use biofacts (hides, bones, etc) to educate visitors about our animals and exhibits
- Assist with Summer Camps and other structured educational programs
- Participate in a variety of off-grounds community service and conservation projects
- Make enrichment for the animals and provide office support
Year-Round ZOOTeens can support all the seasonal opportunities; in addition they may:
- Handle live animals for the purpose of public education
- Serve in leadership positions on the ZOOTeen Executive Board and Committees
- Present formal education programs for various on and off grounds programs
- Assist with the Zoo Snoozin’ program
New ZOOTeens must attend an orientation series that covers volunteer opportunities, customer service training, biofacts, Nature’s Neighborhood duties, teaching techniques, and more. Training is provided by department staff and will be supplemented by optional classes for other programs. Year-round ZOOTeens will have additional training including a thorough training series covering our exhibits and animals, leadership classes, advanced teaching courses, animal handling, and more.
The program requires a commitment of at 60 hours, which you are expected to complete within the ZOOTeen season (May – October). If interested, you may be eligible to stay involved with the program throughout the year. If you participate in the year-round program, you are required to:
- Volunteer at least 8 hours per month, and
- Attend at least 8 ZOOTeen meetings per year, held on the second Sunday of each month.
The ZOOTeen program requires a one-time fee of $40 to cover the initial expenses of the program, including ZOOTeen shirts, training materials, name tag, etc. This fee is payable upon acceptance into the ZOOTeen program, and is not required at the time of application.
Support for Economically Disadvantaged Youth
Scholarships are available to cover the $40 program fee. In addition, transportation assistance (via TARTA) and meal allowances are available, on a limited basis, for qualifying youth. Please contact the Volunteer Coordinator to learn more about these programs, including qualifying information.
ZOOTeen applications are no longer being accepted at this time. Please check back here next year in January or February.