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Volunteer Management Internship

This internship has closed. To see open and upcoming opportunities, visit the internships page.

Friends of the National Zoo’s Department of Conservation Education and Volunteer Engagement is seeking a Volunteer Management Intern who is interested in growing skills in volunteer management, program development and conservation education. The Intern will work closely with Volunteer Program Specialists to provide support and supervision for teen volunteers at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo, an AZA-accredited facility that reaches over 2 million annual visitors. 

Intern may assist on one or more of the following upcoming projects:
  • Teen volunteer trainings
  • Informal educational interpretation at Kids’ Farm
  • Volunteer and visitor evaluation
  • New and ongoing conservation education initiatives
  • Potential to cross-train the Visitor Education Internship
Learning Objectives: 
  • Participate in FONZ volunteer interpreter training
  • Assist in training teen volunteers
  • Supervise several teen volunteers each day
  • Maintain volunteer records and schedule
  • Assist in maintaining program materials and exhibit components
  • Assistance with visitor education events
  • Assess and coach teen volunteers as needed
  • Other duties as assigned

Education: Minimum of two years of college at an accredited institution; background in science, education or museum studies preferred. Others are encouraged to apply and indicate how the position meets their education/career goals.


  • Interest and enthusiasm for conservation and wildlife education
  • Experience in managing teens or volunteers
  • Ability to understand and interpret scientific information
  • Excellent organizational skills
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Creativity and professionalism
  • Diligence and attention to detail
  • Willingness to take initiative and motivation to seek new learning opportunities
  • Flexibility and a good sense of humor
  • Computer proficiency in Microsoft Office and Adobe Acrobat
  • Zoo, aquarium or other museum related experience preferred
  • Must be comfortable actively working outside in all weather
  • Must be able to lift 30 pounds
This is an unpaid position and no stipend is offered. If applicable, FONZ will work with an intern to obtain credit hours for internship, but it is the responsibility of the intern to verify availability through their school and supply paperwork in a timely fashion.
Washington DC
The intern will make his or her own housing arrangements in the Washington, D.C., area.
The Smithsonian's National Zoo and the Smithsonian Institution do not provide free parking to interns.
Term of appointment: 
Summer interns are required to work at least four but preferably five days per week for three months. Mandatory training will take place in June between June 10 and June 23. Internship to finish by August 23. Starting and ending dates are flexible and applicants should indicate availability in emailed application.
Application deadline(s): 
Sunday, February 10, 2019
How to Apply: 
Please submit the following via email to FONZed&volunteers@si.edu. Applications that fail to include all requested items will not be considered.
  • Cover letter
  • Resume or CV summarizing education and experience
  • Names and contact details of two professional references
  • Availability