Employment Opportunities

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Join our fun and professional team in our mission of preservation, conservation, and enhancement of the natural world and its living treasures through education, research, and recreation!

Part-Time positions generally are up to a max. of 25 hours per work week, with some exceptions for seasonal programs.

Position: Associate Veterinarian (Full-Time, one-year term)

Description: The Associate Veterinarian is responsible for providing comprehensive medical care to all animals at the Santa Barbara Zoo, and works closely with/reports to the Director of Animal Care & Health. The Associate Veterinarian performs routine, preventative, emergency, and surgical care, including anesthesia, diagnostics, prescribing medication, conducting clinical pathology, and post-mortem examinations; and keeps computerized records. This position also ensures smooth and efficient day-to-day operation of veterinary services and the hospital, provides training to Zoo staff as needed, participates in research and conservation programs, and assists in managing the commissary operations, evaluating nutrition programs and diet formulations as necessary. In collaboration with the Director of Animal Care & Health, the Associate Vet will evaluate and improve the animal health program. Other duties include providing input on animal behavior training, exhibit design, and emergency escape protocols; supervising and evaluating veterinary students, providing advice and assistance to partners outside of the Zoo, and working with regulatory authorities as needed.

Requirements: Must have effective communication skills and maintain the positive culture of collaboration with veterinary staff, curators, animal care staff, and other Zoo staff to ensure high-quality animal health and welfare, and to attain relevant goals for the Zoo. Must have DVM or equivalent professional degree from an approved/accredited College of Veterinary Medicine, and 1–2 years of paid experience working in a zoo or wildlife facility or completion of an ACZM approved residency program. Must be licensed to practice veterinary medicine in the State of California or eligibility to obtain California State licensing, USDA veterinary accreditation, and DEA license.

Schedule: Exempt, Full-Time (40 hours/work week)

Compensation: $60,000+, DOE.

For further information, please contact Dr. Julie Barnes: (805) 962-5339, ext. 136.

Position: Home School Instructor (Part-Time)

Description: Provide engaging educational programs and activities for groups of homeschool students, focusing on the environment, ecology, and conservation in a fun, creative, and hands-on manner. 

Requirements: Prior teaching experience in outdoor or informal learning settings teaching natural, chemical, or physical science. BA in Education, Environmental Studies, Life Sciences, Zoology, or Biology preferred. Teaching Credential or substitute teaching license preferred.

The ideal candidate is self-motivated, outgoing, has excellent communication skills, and knows how to engage children in positive interactions and conversations. Must have active listening skills, sound judgment, and good decision-making skills, as well as some supervisory experience.

Satisfactory completion of a DOJ criminal background check is required as well as TB clearance. First Aid and CPR certification preferred.

Schedule:  September 15 – November 18, 2016. Fridays 8 a.m.–3:30 p.m. (some days may end earlier).

Compensation: $11/hour

Job Title: Private Event Host (Part-Time)

DescriptionDo you enjoy providing hands-on help for events and celebrations? Do you thrive on providing excellent customer service?

In conjunction with a team of Event Hosts, the Private Event Host is responsible for overseeing day time and/or evening events. Must ensure Zoo events are an enjoyable, wonderful, and safe experience for guests by providing support services.

RequirementsWe are seeking outgoing, motivated, and detail-oriented individuals interested in getting experience in the events industry. Must have excellent verbal and written communication and time management skills. Must have the ability to work well in a team in a fast-paced environment, while multi-tasking under time constraints. At least one year of paid customer service experience is required. Must have the ability to access all areas of the facility and the ability to negotiate the Zoo work environment, standing up to four hours in a row (x2) on your feet, occasionally lifting objects weighing up to 50 pounds.

ScheduleWeekends, daytime, and evenings when events are scheduled.

Compensation: $10/hour

Job Title: Food Prep Technician (Part-Time)

Description: Do you enjoy cooking and interacting with guests, without having to work a night shift? The Food Preparation Technician facilitates a positive guest experience by providing fast, quality service and enjoyable food to guests and employees of the Santa Barbara Zoo. Prepares various food items for cooking or serving, by cleaning, cutting and/or peeling.

Requirements: Applicants must be minimum 18 years of age. Must be a team player with excellent oral and written communication skills, with knowledge of health department food preparation regulations. Prior experience preferred. Ability to exercise safe work habits and to handle rush times with poise and efficiency. Must be able to access all areas of the facility, lift cases in excess of 50 pounds waist-high, and to stand/walk during entire shift. Food Handler certification preferred, or ability to certify within 30 days.

Schedule: Weekends, including some holidays, occasional evenings for scheduled events, and occasional weekdays, up to a maximum of 25 hours per week.

Compensation: $10/hour

Job Title: Cook (Part-Time)

Description: Do you enjoy cooking and interacting with guests, without having to work a night shift? The cook facilitates a positive guest experience by providing fast, quality service and enjoyable food to guests and employees of the Santa Barbara Zoo. Also responsible for the preparation and replenishment of all items needed for the restaurant.

Requirements: Applicants must be minimum 18 years of age and have cooking experience. Must be a team player with excellent oral and written communication skills, with knowledge of health department food preparation regulations. Ability to exercise safe work habits and to handle rush times with poise and efficiency. Must be able to access all areas of the facility, lift cases in excess of 50 pounds waist-high, and stand/walk during entire shift. Food Handler certification preferred, or ability to certify within 30 days.

Schedule: Weekends, including some holidays, occasional evenings for scheduled events, and occasional weekdays, up to a maximum of 25 hours per week.

Compensation: $10+/hour, DOE

Job Title: Dino and Grizzly Character Performer (Part-Time Seasonal and/or Regular)

Description: Can you bring a roaring, chomping, blinking, running, growling dinosaur to life? How about unveiling California Tales with native California animals? Be a part of the team that performs for over 50,000 people this summer at the Santa Barbara Zoo in our one-of-a-kind stage shows. California Tales is a puppet show in the style of Disney’s Finding Nemo stage show, a Bunraku/Muppets style of puppetry where the audience can see the performers along with the puppets.  California Tales teaches kids about animals using folk tales from California and around the world.  “How to Train Your Dinosaurs” features state-of-the-art dinosaur puppets and explores what zoo keepers do behind-the-scenes at the zoo to care for rare and exotic creatures.

The Character Performer will perform on stage as part of the cast of our Dino show, “How to Train your Dinosaurs,” and as a Grizzly Bear in “California Tales.” The stage show is family-friendly, 15-minute lively presentation with human hosts and character performers. The character performer will perform inside an amazing, one-of-a-kind, state-of-the-art Dinosaur costume and/or Grizzly Bear costume designed by a world-class Hollywood special effects studio. Will represent the Santa Barbara Zoo’s wholesome, family-friendly brand on stage before large numbers of people and on occasional appearances in the community. Must be comfortable approaching guests and initiating conversations.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years old. T-Rex costume requires applicant to be at least 5’10” and able to carry a 75-pound backpack device for at least 20 minutes at a time. Applicant must be comfortable with tight spaces and wearing such a costume. Stage, dance, gymnastic and/or athletic experience a plus! Outgoing personality with positive attitude and excellent interpersonal and communication skills required. Must be willing to undergo acting training and rehearsal, and follow instructions from Director. Must be able to climb stairs and ladders, and manipulate basic tools.

Schedule: Must be available weekends and weekdays, any time between 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Some holidays, school breaks, and some evenings for scheduled events.

Compensation: $10/hour, DOE

Job Title: Show Actor (Part-Time)

Description: Under the general direction of the Director of Marketing, Show Actor will perform on stage as part of the cast of our shows “How to Train your Dinosaurs” and “California Tales.”

Be a part of the team that performs for over 50,000 people this summer at the Santa Barbara Zoo in our one-of-a-kind stage shows.  “California Tales” is an Avenue Q type puppet show that teaches kids about animals using folks tales from California and around the world.  “How to Train Your Dinosaurs” features state-of-the-art dinosaur puppets and explores what zoo keepers do behind-the-scenes at the zoo to care for rare and exotic creatures.”

The stage shows are a family-friendly, 15-minute lively presentation with human hosts and character performers. The shows run twice daily on the Zoo’s Rolling Hill Stage.

Show Actor accompanies Character Performers during show and meet and greet, ensuring safety and show quality, assisting guests with requests, answering guest questions, and other guest service-related jobs as needed.

Requirements: Must be at least 16 years of age. Outgoing personality with positive attitude required. Will represent the Santa Barbara Zoo’s wholesome, family-friendly brand on stage before large numbers of people and on occasional appearances in the community. Must be comfortable approaching guests and initiating conversations. Applicant must be willing to undergo acting training and rehearsal, and follow instructions from Director. Must be able to stand/walk for up to two continuous hours and access all areas of the facility. Previous stage experience through theater, music, or dance is a plus!

Schedule: Must be available weekends and weekdays, any time between 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Some holidays, school breaks, and some evenings for scheduled events.

Compensation: $10/hour

Job Title: Train Engineer (Part-Time)

Description: Are you a train enthusiast who enjoys working outdoors? Are you a storyteller who enjoys educating and interacting with the public? Consider joining the Railroad Engineer Team! Provide a “tour around the world” in under 10 minutes by educating guests about exotic animals from around the world, talking about local wildlife and sharing a bit of the Zoo’s history! The Train Engineer facilitates a positive, educational  and safe guest experience, connecting guests with our animals.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age, self-motivated, and have a positive attitude. Must complete a satisfactory DOJ background check, have valid current CA Driving License and a clean driving record. Basic knowledge of hand tools and mechanical maintenance are necessary, as well as an outgoing and friendly personality, great communication skills and capability to multi-task. Must be able to lift up to 50 lbs. occasionally, climb stairs or ladders, and manipulate basic tools of the job.  Must be comfortable approaching guests and initiating conversation. Must be available to work some weekdays, weekends, holidays, evenings, and during the Santa Barbara Zoo’s busy seasons.

Schedule: Weekdays, weekends, holidays, and some evenings, up to 25 hours/week, usually between hours of 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Compensation: $10/ hour

Job Title: Membership Clerk (Part-Time)

Description: The Membership Clerk is a positive, organized, detail-oriented individual who has strong communication skills, and enjoys engaging with people of all ages. Under general direction of the Director of Membership, and the Director of Guest Services, the Membership Clerk is responsible for supporting the Membership Team by processing Membership mail, entering Membership data, putting together Membership card packages to mail out, answering Membership questions via phone, email, and in person, and performing various tasks as assigned. The Membership Clerk is also responsible for supporting the Guest Services team by assisting with phones.

Requirements: Must be at least 18 years of age and have a high school diploma. Must have a positive attitude and be willing to represent the Santa Barbara Zoo’s wholesome, family-friendly brand, and support the Zoo’s mission. Must be proficient in Microsoft Office, have strong communication skills, written comprehension, speech clarity, speech recognition, inductive reasoning, and strong customer service skills. Experience with Raiser’s Edge or other database software, a plus. Must have at least one year of experience working in an office setting, preferably in the customer service field.

Schedule: 20-25 hours/week. Must include Sunday shift. May include some evenings for events.

Compensation: $10.50-11/hour, DOE

Zoo Applications

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Employment Application

Educator Application

Adult Volunteer Application

FAQ

We accept résumés online, but they must be accompanied by a Zoo Employment Application. Additional materials such as photos, portfolios, writing samples, etc. are not accepted.

Fill out a Zoo Employment Application, and send it to the Zoo along with your résumé. Applications are accepted via email, fax, regular mail, or can be dropped off at the Front Gate during business hours. See General Employment Info for more information.

All incoming completed applications referring to a specific, open position receive a confirmation response. Employment applications are directed to the hiring team who will then contact the best-qualified candidates for the open position. You will be informed when the position you applied for is filled.

At the Zoo, we value time management which allows our staff to do an outstanding job throughout the day on a tight schedule. Please call to make an appointment and/or submit your application and résumé via email, fax or mail; this is the best way to make sure someone gets back to you promptly.

Please check our Employment Listings or call the Zoo at (805) 962-5339.

Applicants must be at least 14 years old. Some positions require that an applicant be at least 16 or 18. Please check the requirement information indicated in the job posting.

Most of our job opportunities are open to applicants 14 years and older. We will consider your application for our entry level positions, especially the Guest Experience Specialist positions.

Our animal positions are geared toward skilled individuals with a background in a related life science field. Please check the requirement information indicated on the job posting.

Yes. Please send an application and/or résumé for each job opening you wish to apply for ad reference the specific job title. You may want to make a different cover letter for each position and photocopy your application.

Once you submit your application and résumé, they are forwarded to the hiring manager for that position. Selected candidates will be interviewed by a department manager and/or a team. This process can take anywhere from a couple of days or months, depending on the position.

We do not have internships at this time, but please contact the volunteer office by email or phone: (805) 962-5339, ext. 153 to be put on an interest list.

Our online job postings are updated regularly, so please check the Employment Listings page. If the job is no longer posted, it is closed or we are not currently hiring for it at this time.

Once your application is sent to the hiring department, you will receive an acknowledgement that we received your application (via email or regular mail). We will contact you directly only if you are selected for an interview. If you are not contacted for an interview, there will be no further notification except to let you know the position has been filled.

No. Applications are accepted for current job openings only. Please remember to indicate the position you are interested in on your application or cover letter.

Yes. We generally have openings in customer service, education/Zoo Camp, show actor, and private event host positions. Apply early! Please check our Employment Listings page for open positions.

Yes. Please check our Volunteer Opportunities page.