Volunteer

Volunteer

Volunteer

 

Whether you are interested in the environment, conservation of animal habitats, or endangered species, or you like to reach out to others to teach them about these subjects, Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium has a variety of volunteer groups that may be just for you. Spend time with like-minded individuals while helping the Zoo accomplish its many goals by becoming a Zoo Volunteer. 
 

Adult Volunteers

There is great reward in teaching others to see the wonders of nature and watch a mind grow. Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium has a selection of volunteer opportunities that are both interesting and fulfilling. Some positions interact with Zoo visitors, while others may work behind the scenes. Whatever the job, each and everyone is valued and performs a service for Omaha's Zoo and Aquarium that cannot be measured in dollars and cents.

Requirements:

  • Must be 18 years of age
  • Be able to commit to 2 years of volunteer service
  • Meet minimum hourly requirements per year
  • Attend Volunteer Orientation 
  • Complete application and interview process

Volunteer Opportunities

  • Docents - Docents assist in the facilitation and enhancement of the Zoo's education programs, promote conservation messages, and provide a positive experience to Zoo guests. Education programs include biofact presentations, on grounds tours, and exhibit interpretations. This position plays a vital role in the visitor experience as well as the success of special events. There is no contact with animals. 
  • Wildlife Safari Park - Wildlife Safari volunteers assist in the facilitation of education programs, promote conservation messages, and provide a positive experience to Park visitors. Volunteers serve at formal and informal education stations and provide staff with additional support at special events. The Wildlife Safari Park is located off Nebraska's I-80 Exit 426. There is no contact with animals. 
  • Diet Kitchen - Diet Kitchen asisstants assist in the preparation and maintenance of Zoo animal diets. The main duties include chopping, peeling, cutting, weighing, cleaning, and packaging foods for Zoo animals. Use of sharp instruments and some lifting is required for these tasks. There is no contact with animals. 
  • Scuba Diver - Must be a certified scuba diver to apply.

Other opportunities become available from time to time. Please check the application for these areas. 

Apply Here

Youth Volunteers

Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium has volunteer opportunities for all students in 4th through 12th grade. The explanation, deadlines, and meeting dates are listed below for reference. Grades and programs are determined by the date students are registered. 

XYZ (eXplore Your Zoo) - 4th through 6th Grade

XYZ is designed for students currently in 4th grade through 6th grade who have an interest in animals and want to expand their knowledge of the natural world. XYZ students enhance their knowledge and skills of the Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium's animals, exhibits, and conservation efforts from a unique combination of active learning and volunteering experiences with the public. 

Those interested in applying for the XYZ program need to complete an online application form and short essay. Essay questions are: "What is your favorite Zoo animal? Why is it your favorite?", and "Has there been a time you taught someone something? How did it make you feel?"

There are two classroom experiences held before summer in May. These experiences discuss the summer program and work as a get-to-know each other event. Two sessions are offered each day. 

XYZ students volunteer during June and July. After acceptance, volunteers can sign up for dates on the internet and have the opportunity for notification reminders. 

The fee is $60 for Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium members and $75 for non-members.
This fee is reduced to $30 for returning XYZ students. 

The application period for Summer 2021 has ended. Please check back in January 2022 to apply for the Summer 2022 XYZ Program. 

 

Junior Crew - 7th and 8th Grade

Junior Crew is designed to challenge students in 7th and 8th grade in natural and life sciences. Junior Crew students enhance their knowledge of conservation efforts being made here at the Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium and around the world. They also learn about different careers at the Zoo. Junior Crew students gain knowledge through active learning and share this knowledge and skills with the Zoo's guests. 

Those interested in applying for the Junior Crew program need to complete an online application form and short essay. Essay questions are: "Imagine you are designing an exhibit. What animal would you choose and what would be in the exhibit?", and "Has there been a time when you had to do a task you didn't want to do? How did you handle it?"

There are two classroom experiences held before summer in May. These experiences will discuss the summer program and work as a get-to-know each other event. Two sessions are offered each day. 

Junior Crew students volunteer during June and July. After acceptance, volunteers can sign up for dates on the internet and have the opportunity for notification reminders. 

The fee is $60 for Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium members and $75 for non-members. 
This fee is reduced to $30 for returning volunteers. 

The application period for Summer 2021 has ended. Please check back in January 2022 to apply for the Summer 2022 Junior Crew Program. 

 

Zoo Crew - 9th through 12th Grade

Zoo Crew is a group of dedicated students who support the Zoo's mission by volunteering their time and talents year-round. They participate in educational and on-grounds programs. 

All year Zoo Crew can volunteer throughout the Zoo and showcase their information and knowledge of animals and exhibits to the Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium guests. Depending on experience. Zoo Crew students gain more responsibility with biofacts and in the areas they are able to volunteer in. 

During the summer Zoo Crew students can become Day Mentors in one or more areas of the Zoo. They assist with teaching XYZ and Junior Crew their knowledge about these areas and help the younger students become proficient in presenting information and knowledge to the guests. 

There are 12 monthly meetings for Zoo Crew students. They cover new information and are given a chance to better understand the program. Zoo Crew students who meet 70 hours of volunteering, attend at least 7 of the 12 meetings, and participate in 2 special events, earn a free family membership for the following year. 

The fee is $75 for Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium members, $90 for non-members. A $40 fee applies fo each returning year. Students interested in the program begin the process by filling out a preliminary application. 

How To Apply For Zoo Crew

1. Fill out the online application. You will receive a separate notification upon acceptance to the program which contains further information which must be completed in order to join Zoo Crew.

2. You must attend the Kick-Off Meeting at the Zoo in September 2021Please bring a parent/guardian with you to the meeting.

Applications for 2022 will be open from July 1st, 2021 through September 15th, 2021. Please check back after July 1st for the application link. 

Apply Here

Volunteer Work Days

Zoo Food Storage Day

Saturday, July 31st, 9:00 -12:00 PM

Interested in volunteering at the Zoo for a day? Come volunteer to help the Zoo store food for winter! Just like some people preserve food from their gardens by canning or freezing, the Zoo preserves browse (fresh, leafy branches) for our browsing herbivores to enjoy through the winter. Volunteers will help preserve browse through a process called ensiling, which is the same lacto-fermentation process that produces sauerkraut, kimchi, or pickles! This process involves cutting browse into relatively short lengths that can be packed into 35-gallon drums. Come help us trim branches and learn more about the importance of browse in our Zoo animal diets.

Plan for working in warm weather and sun. Bring water, sunscreen, gloves, and clothing appropriate for working outdoors. Some extra pruners will be available, but please bring your own if you have them. 

Volunteers will receive free admission to the Zoo for July 31st.  

To sign up, please email volunteers@omahazoo.com with the names and emails of participating volunteers. Volunteers must be at least 13 years of age to participate. Volunteers under 18 years of age must be accompanied by an adult. An email will be sent prior to the work day with instructions on parking and entering the Zoo.

Current Volunteers

Current volunteers use Volgistics Volunteer Management System.

Access Here

New to Volgistics?

Instructions to Log In

Internships and Vet Externships

Omaha's Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium is a multi-faceted operation and we try to develop internships and job shadowing opportunities to encompass all aspects of the Zoo. We currently offer the following opportunities for students 11th grade and older.

Veterinary Externship

Available to fourth-year veterinary students. 

Apply Here

 

Internships

Available for students in college or recent college graduates. There are three 13-week sessions for interns each year: Fall Session (mid-September to mid-December), Spring Session (late January to late April), and Summer Session (mid-May to mid-August). Please note that we do not provide a stipend for interns. 

We are currently accepting applications for the 2022 spring internship session. The spring session will be February 1st-April 29th. Mandatory orientation will be February 1st, from 9am-4pm. 

Interns must be available to work 28-32 hours per week; unpaid. Interns must be available to attend Tuesday OR Thursday afternoon professional development sessions starting the second week of their internship. Must be willing to work weekends and holidays. Most interns will be expected to work at least one weekend day. Schedules will be determined before internships begin by working with the Volunteer Manager and area supervisors.

Spring 2022 applications are due December 13, 2021 by 11:59 PM. 

Apply Here

Education Internship

Wildlife Safari Park Education Internship

Amphibian Conservation Area Internship

Desert Dome Reptiles Internship

Desert Dome Mammals Internship

Butterfly and Insect Internship

Aquarium Fish Internship

Aquarium Birds Internship

Birds Internship

Asian Highlands Internship

Hoofstock Internship

Elephant Internship

Nutrition Internship

Browse Internship

Interactive Animal Programs Internship - Children's Adventure Trails

Interactive Animal Programs Internship - Meadowlark Theater

Wildlife Safari Park Internship