Zoo Teen Volunteer Program

The Maryland Zoo’s Zoo Teen Program is an exciting way for high school students ages 14-17 to learn about zoos and conservation, explore career opportunities, gain leadership skills, earn service learning hours, meet lifelong friends, and so much more. Participants will receive comprehensive training from Zoo staff, a uniform, and a badge. We will also offer exciting opportunities for professional and personal development.

We are seeking responsible, reliable, consistent, and enthusiastic teens interested in learning about animals, conservation, assisting and engaging guests, and making a difference.

All teen volunteers will start as Zoo Guides. Zoo Guides ensure that a Zoo visit starts on a pleasant, comfortable, and informative note by answering general questions about the Zoo in a helpful and enthusiastic manner, and by pointing out all the great exhibits, events, and programs available. After successfully completing summer volunteer requirements as a Zoo Guide, Zoo Teens may choose the volunteer track that they would like to participate in.

This is a year-round volunteer program.

The 2024 recruitment season for Zoo Teens has finished.

We will do another recruitment starting winter 2025. If you are 14 and over and interested in volunteering for the Zoo between now and winter 2025, please look at what events we need support for.

Potential Growth

  • Guest Engagement– Volunteers have the opportunity to become more comfortable in front of groups and fine their voice. Future assignments can lead to learning about animals, helping educate the public about conservation and animal care, and more all while ensuring our guests have a great experience at the Zoo.
  • Conservation and Research– Volunteers have the opportunity to learn about the Maryland Zoo’ conservation efforts and support special initiatives and research projects.

Zoo Teen Program Requirements

  • Submit a completed application. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
  • Attend a group interview and be accepted into the program.
  • Complete a 1-week training Boot Camp, Monday – Friday 9:00am – 4:00pm (there are two sessions)
  • Meet a monthly requirement of 4 shifts each month for at least one year (shifts will be scheduled – same days each month)
  • Volunteer at least one shift at Breakfast with Bunny, Bunny BonanZOO, Zoo Bop, Zoo BOO!, or a Santa Breakfast.
  • Attend at least 3 conservation service projects.
  • Attend end of summer off-site conservation field trip project (available to those who meet volunteer requirements)
  • Effectively communicate (absences, lateness etc.)

Important 2024 Dates

  • January 31, 2024 – Zoo Teen Program Application Opens
  • April 12, 2024 – Zoo Teen Program Application Closes
  • May 4, 5, 18, 19, 2024 – Interview Dates
  • May 30, 2024 – Selections Made
  • June 6th and 9th, 2024 – Virtual Parent Orientation
  • June 24th-28th, 2024 – Zoo Teen Volunteer Boot Camp Session 1 (9am-4pm daily)
  • July 1st-5th, 2024 – Zoo Teen Volunteer Boot Camp Session 2 (9am-4pm daily)

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Questions? Please contact the Volunteer Office at volunteers@marylandzoo.org or call 443-552-5266.