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Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo

Elephant/Rhino Internship – Spring 2018

Deadline to Apply: December 4, 2017 at 5:00 pm ET

Tampa’s Lowry Park Zoo (TLPZ) is currently seeking enthusiastic and motivated individuals interested in learning about the Animal Care field. 


The Elephant/Rhino Internship at Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, Florida is designed for college students or recent college graduates who are interested in a career in large mammal management. Our interns work side-by-side with experienced animal care staff every day. Interns will be exposed to all aspects of the daily care and training of African elephants and white rhinos. TLPZ’s Elephant/Rhino program is a protected contact system managed through positive reinforcement focused operant conditioning. The successful candidate will be responsible for assisting with the daily care and husbandry of African elephants, Kenyan impala, Nile Lechwe, Grevy’s zebras and Southern white rhinos. 

An Intern in this department can expect to learn the following:

  • Assist in diet preparation, feeding, exhibit maintenance, cleaning, record keeping, and other area responsibilities.

  • Assist animal care staff in implementing enrichment for various species.

  • Complete supplemental work sheets and quizzes as assigned.

  • Participate in trainer lecture series given by the animal care staff.

  • Participate in behavioral observations and data collection/entry (as required).

  • Develop and give educational presentation(s) on microphone for zoo guests.

  • Develop fundamental understanding of operant conditioning

  • Assist animal care staff in training sessions

Experience Required

Qualifications: Must have successfully completed one semester of college. Applicants that are Junior, Senior, or Master’s level student or recent graduate or candidates currently pursuing a degree in any of the biological or life sciences preferred. Must be a self-motivated, positive, and hardworking individual. Ability to effectively work independently, and within a team environment. Must be able to multi-task. Ability to communicate ideas and contribute effectively. Must be at least 18 years of age. Must have a GPA of 2.5 or higher. Required Availability: Must be able to commit to a 14 week internship. Must be able to commit to a schedule of 40 hours per week. Schedule is typically 4 - ten hour days (7:30a.m. to 6:00p.m.) Must be available to work weekends and night events if needed. Physical Requirements: Ability to work in extreme weather conditions typical to west central Florida (i.e., heat, rain, or cold). Must have physical endurance for long, high volume days and be able to stand/walk for long periods of time. Must be able to lift 50 pounds and move heavy objects. Additional Requirements: If an internship offer is made, it is contingent on: Candidates seeking academic credit must have arrangements agreed upon between the Zoo and their school before beginning the internship. All offers are contingent on the successful completion of a criminal background screening and execution of a required hold harmless/liability release agreement. Candidate will be responsible for the cost of the background check (typically $25, but certain jurisdictions may have additional fees) Contingent upon receipt of documentation of negative TB test within the last 6 months and Tetanus vaccination within the last 5 years. Interns must have personal health insurance coverage for illness or injury (as volunteers and interns are not covered by the Zoo workers’ compensation program). Benefits: Internships are unpaid and are designed to meet academic requirements, as applicable, and provide valuable real-world experience for participants. Successful completion of an internship may also yield letters of recommendation, a portfolio of their work when applicable, and important networking contacts. Who is eligible? Applicants must be a Junior, Senior, or Master’s level students or recent graduates. Applicants must submit an Internship Application, cover letter, and resume in order to be considered for a position.

Further Comments

Please Note: Interns must make their own accommodation and transportation arrangements. This is an unpaid internship



How to Apply

Tampa's Lowry Park Zoo
1101 West Sligh Ave
Tampa, FL 33604

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