Teen Keeper Program

The Teen Keeper Program at Potter Park Zoo is now two different programs, giving teens a great opportunity to explore some of the many career pathways available at a zoo!  Sound like fun? Apply today!

TEEN ZOO VOLUNTEERS

Teen Zoo Volunteers will assist staff with pony rides, the Wings From Down Under exhibit, the contact (goat) yard, and will work with the education staff in the Zookambi summer school program.  

Requirements:

  • Must be at least 14 years old by April 1, 2017
  • Commit to 20 hours of service over the summer
  • Completed application
  • Letter of recomendation from a teacher

 

JUNIOR ZOOKEEPERS

After one year as a Teen Zoo Volunteer, teens are eligible to apply to become a Junior Zookeeper. Junior Zookeepers will take their career exploration one step further as they work more closely with the animal care staff. Teens will work with zookeepers and assist them with the daily care of the animals.

Requirements:

  • Must be at least 15 years old by April 1, 2017
  • Completed one year of Teen Zoo Volunteer or Teen Keeper program
  • Commit to 40 hours of service over the summer
  • Completed application
  • Letter of recomendation from a teacher
  • 500-750 word essay explaining how this program will help you meet your career goals
  • All Junior Zookeeper applicants will interview with zookeeping staff

 

How to apply:

For Teen Zoo Volunteers, please submit a completed application and a letter of recommendation from a teacher. Home-schooled candidates must submit a letter of recommendation from a non-family adult. 

For Junior Zookeepers, please submit a completed application, a letter of recommendation from a teacher, and a 500-750 word essay explaining how this program can help you meet your career goals.

Click here to download the application

Due to the high volume of interested teens applying for a limited number of program openings, all applications must be complete, submitted with a letter of recommendationn and essay if applicable, and be postmarked no later than April 1, 2017 to be considered. 

As you are filling out your application, just a few important reminders:

  • Applicants must be at least 14 years old by April 1, 2017
  • Applicants must include a letter of recommendation from a teacher. Home schooled candidates may submit a letter from a non-family adult.
  • Teen Zoo Volunteers are required to give a minimum of 20 hours during the summer. 
  • Junior Zookeepers are required to give a minimum of 40 hours during the summer.
  • Participants will be primarily working outside, and will be getting dirty in most cases
  • All teen volunteers MUST select an orientation date and attend the session with a parent or guardian
  • A program fee ($50 Teen Zoo Volunteers, $100 Junior Zookeepers) will be assessed and includes a uniform T-shirt and name badge.  The fee will be collected when you attend orientation.  If the fee would pose a hardship for your family, scholarship funds for a portion of the fee are available.  To request a scholarship application, please contact the education department at the numbers below.
  • Accepted participants will need to provide a negative tB test prior to volunteering.
  • Incomplete applications will not be considered.

 

If you need further information or have questions, please contact us at 517-342-2714 or 517-342-2769.

Mail to:

Teen Zoo Volunteer/Junior Zookeeper Program
Potter Park Zoological Society
1301 S. Pennsylvania Ave.
Lansing, MI 48912


Hand deliver to:

Potter Park Zoological Society
1301 S. Pennsylvania Ave.
Lansing, MI 48912
Mon. - Fri., 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.