Zoo Teen Programs


Coordinator: Jen Katona
Phone: 321.254.9453 x375
Email: zooteens@brevardzoo.org
Fax: 321.259.5966
Mail: Brevard Zoo
8225 N. Wickham Rd.
Melbourne, FL 32940


Applications for temporary youth volunteer positions with the Summer VolunTeen Program are now open!

The Summer VolunTEEN Program is a 10-week-, 10-day-minimum opportunity that runs from May through early August.  VolunTEENs fill a variety of roles, such as engaging Zoo guests, assisting with summer camps and working alongside Zoo Teen volunteers.

Prospective Summer VolunTeens must complete and submit an application. Late or incomplete, missing any pieces, applications will not be reviewed. Around 50-60 applicants will be invited to interview, and of those approximately 40 are invited to join the Summer VolunTeen program. All applicants are contacted by May regarding their application status.

Applications are due by 5 p.m. on April 7, 2024. Applicants must be 13 by April 1, 2024.



Zoo Teens volunteer once a month on their assigned Saturday or Sunday, typically from 9 am to 3 pm. The day is divided in half, with one opportunity in the morning before lunch and another opportunity in the afternoon. Assignments include:

  • educational outreach with Discovery Carts
  • raising funds for conservation and educational programs
  • assisting staff in the Barnyard, Kangaroo Yard, and Free Flight Aviary
  • engaging guests at the Oyster Reef Aquarium
  • assisting staff with summer and winter camps
  • Assisting with special events and seasonal functions

We welcome Zoo Teens to volunteer more than once per month if they are available. In June and July, instead of regular assigned days, Zoo Teens can sign up for hours that fit their schedule any day of the week (a 25-hour minimum is required). Teens can take advantage of leadership and career exploration opportunities by participating in special projects and attending talks by speakers from a variety of career backgrounds.


All Zoo Teens must:

  • be between the ages of 13 and 16 on January 1 of the year of their program
  • have an interest in animals, the environment, and working with guests

We seek applicants with:

  • the desire to try new and exciting things
  • a willingness to be responsible and polite while working hard
  • the maturity required to represent the Zoo in a responsible manner and effectively engage with guests of all ages


Once accepted, Zoo Teens must:

  • commit to one year of service following their training period.
  • complete the initial training program and pass a background check
  • pass a final exam with a minimum score of 80%
  • provide proof of a negative TB test
  • pay an enrollment fee of $45 (to cover the cost of Zoo Teen manual, polo, nametag and other supplies; financial assistance is available)
  • attend 7 out of 10 assigned Saturday or Sunday volunteer days (weekend assignments not required in June and July)
  • volunteer a minimum of 25 hours during the summer months of June and July
  • participate in Boo at the Zoo
  • attend at least one conservation event per year
  • assist with at least one special event per year
  • participate in an annual training session if re-enrolled past February of the coming year


There are numerous benefits to the Summer VolunTeen Program. Many students are able to use their volunteer experience to meet the community service requirement for the Florida Bright Futures Scholarships (contact the guidance department of your school for more details). Students may also receive credit for their volunteer hours from their school. Volunteers have the opportunity to work with Education Department staff and the public, gaining valuable skills for a variety of careers. Making new friends, earning potential employment references, gaining work experience, and feeling a sense of accomplishment are just a few more reasons to apply!