Zookeeper Internships

Organization: Chicago Zoological Society/Brookfield Zoo (AZA Member)
Location: Brookfield, Illinois, United States
Job or Internship: Internship

Chicago Zoological Society, which manages Brookfield Zoo, is currently accepting applications for our College Experiential Learning Opportunities (CELO) program. Please visit the following site for specific details on applying and contact interns@czs.org with any other questions you may have: (http://www.czs.org/czs/internships) Chicago Zoological Society is an EEO/Affirmative Action Employer - M/F/V/DDiverse candidates are encouraged to apply and to identify themselves.

Title Zookeeper Internship

Learning Objectives

This position contributes to the success of the Chicago Zoological Society by training individuals on job skills and practices relevant to keeper work at Brookfield Zoo, focusing on sound science and animal welfare/husbandry. Individuals will also have practice with guest encounters, helping to improve relationships between keepers and guests and increasing guest knowledge and empathy about animals and conservation during Zoo visits.


• Animal Care: Daily husbandry, exhibit maintenance, supervised animal training, animal observations, diet preparation

• Guest Interactions: Formal and informal interactions with Zoo guests through animal encounters, chats, tours etc

• Project/Journal: All interns are required to complete either an observation based research project, experiential journal or other deliverable as determined by internship area

• Research: Become familiar with Species Survival Plans (SSP), Population Management Plans (PMP) and other zoo population management strategies as well as natural history, current research and conservation studies related to animals in area of internship

• Other related duties as assigned.


• Minimum 1 year of college with 2.5/4.0 overall gpa.

• Spanish fluency a plus, but not required.

• Proof of current Tetanus and negative TB test required prior to start date.

• Must submit to complete criminal background check and prove clear on all measures.

• Required levels of animal care experience vary between animal area placements.

Additional Notes

Interns will be expected and required to interact with a diverse team of animal programs staff, interns and volunteers. Interns will be expected to follow direction of full time staff for their personal safety and safety/care of all animals in the area. Interns will be expected to work irregular schedules including weekends and holidays if applicable during placement term. This internship is a physically demanding experience and will require intermediate levels of strength and flexibility as well as the ability to work outdoors and in all types of weather conditions. Uniforms will be provided to all interns upon start of internship.

Interns will be evaluated regularly by mentors on performance and knowledge. CZS reserves the right to dismiss an individual from the keeper internship at any point during the term.

Wages All Zookeeper Internships are Unpaid