Job Openings - Blank Park Zoo

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Thank you for your interest in working for the Blank Park Zoo.

The Blank Park Zoo is a respected leader in animal care, education, and conservation of exotic wildlife. The zoo is the only AZA accredited zoo in the state of Iowa.
Applications will only be accepted for available positions. Please make note on application which position you are applying.

The Blank Park Zoo is an equal opportunity employer.
Click here for Internship Opportunities.
Click here for Full-Time Opportunities.
Click here for Seasonal Opportunities.



Full-Time Openings:

There are no full-time openings available at this time


Part-Time Openings

 

Part-Time Events Coordinator
Department: Development
Supervisor: Rental and Sales Coordinator

Description:
Blank Park Zoo is looking for a reliable, enthusiastic, self-starter who is highly motivated to assist with event execution. The Part-Time Events Coordinator is responsible for providing direct support to the events team. The individual will work in conjunction with the Rental and Sales Coordinator to oversee the Zoo rental program and will primarily be on-site supervising private events.

Responsibilities:

  • Oversee customer relations of Blank Park Zoo’s rental and private events program
  • Be an on-site contact for rental groups
  • Assist with setup and tear down of events
  • Assist with planning and execution of in-house and public events
  • Support Rental and Sales Coordinator with planning and implementation of group rentals
  • Ability to work independently and manage multiple accounts
  • Maintain a strong relationship and good communication with the Zoo’s preferred caterer, staff and volunteers
  • Participate as a member of the Development Department aiding with Zoo development activities
  • Additional tasks as assigned by the supervisor

Qualifications:

  • Currently enrolled in, or graduated from, a college or university majoring in event planning or related field OR minimum two years of full-time work that involved responsibility directly related to customer relations
  • Possession of a valid driver’s license
  • Proof of current vehicle insurance
  • Capable of lifting 50 pounds on a regular basis

Start Date:
Position open until filled.

Hours:
Average of 15 hours/week. Evenings and weekends required. Ability to work in a variety of weather and temperature conditions. Schedule will be coordinated with your supervisor.

To Apply:
Please send cover letter and resume to zoohr@blankparkzoo.org or the address below:

Blank Park Zoo
Attn: Rental and Sales Coordinator
7401 SW 9th Street
Des Moines, Iowa 50315

 


 
Seasonal Openings:

 

Custodian 
The Blank Park Zoo is seeking a reliable individual for the position of custodian. Candidates will be responsible for maintaining the cleanliness of the zoo facility on a daily basis. Hours vary from 12 – 40 hours per week depending on the time of year.

Essential Duties:

  • Cleans and restocks restrooms and checks them regularly throughout the day.
  • Empties all trash containers daily and as needed.
  • Cleans all litter on Zoo grounds, parking lot, and park property.
  • Assists with set-up for events, banquets, and rentals.
  • Cleans floors, windows, and garbage in lobby, rental spaces, and other public places.
  • Empties trash and recycle containers in the office building.
  • Assists with Zoo’s recycling program.
  • Maintains a clean and safe atmosphere for guests. 
  • Other duties as assigned

Qualifications:

  • Great customer service and communication skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Neat and organized
  • Ability to communicate effectively with others
  • Able to work weekends, holidays, special events, and evenings.
  • Ability to work in all weather conditions
  • Proven reliability.
  • Ability to pass background check.
  • Ability to lift and carry 50 pounds.

Pay Rate:
$9 / hour

Start Date:
approximately April 1, 2016

To apply:
Please submit a Blank Park Zoo application by e-mail: zoohr@blankparkzoo.org or mail: Blank Park Zoo, Human Resources, 7401 SW 9th Street, Des Moines, IA 50315 or drop off in person during regular zoo hours.

 

 

Guest Services Associate
The Blank Park Zoo is seeking customer service oriented individuals to work in various areas around the zoo. Candidates will work a varied shift and perform a variety of assignments related to all guest service operations. Candidates work under the general supervision of the Guest Service Manager. 

Essential Duties:

  • Work in the entire guest service department including but not limited to: Admissions, Rides and Interaction areas:
  • Admissions – Cashier, Assist guests with questions
  • Rides – Cashier, assist guests with loading and unloading, operating ride
  • Interaction Areas – Cashier and administer rules for feeding areas such as Kids Kingdom, giraffe and parakeet
  • Birthday Parties – set-up, tear-down, animal presentation, greets guests, and serves as hospitality attendant
  • Assist guests with questions, problems, or emergencies
  • Ability to handle cash and balance drawers

Qualifications:

  • Cash handling experience preferred
  • Great customer service and communication skills
  • Enthusiastic and outgoing personality
  • Ability to communicate effectively with others  
  • Basic computer skills
  • Able to work weekends, holidays, special events, and evenings
  • Proven reliability
  • Ability to pass background check
  • Ability to work outside in all weather conditions
  • Some areas require the ability to stand for long periods of time

Pay Rate:
Hourly rate varies

Start Date:
approximately April 1, 2016

To apply:
Please submit a Blank Park Zoo application by e-mail: zoohr@blankparkzoo.org or mail: Blank Park Zoo, Human Resources, 7401 SW 9th Street, Des Moines, IA 50315 or drop off in person during regular zoo hours.

 

 

Retail Associate
The Blank Park Zoo is seeking customer service oriented individuals to work in the gift shop and retail outlets around the zoo. Candidates will work a varied shift and perform a variety of assignments related to retail operations. Candidates work under the general supervision of the Retail Manager. 

Essential Duties:

  • Ability to operate a computer to complete a sales transaction
  • Ability to handle cash and balance drawers
  • Assist guests with retail inventory
  • Stock shelves
  • Straighten inventory
  • Dust, vaccum and other cleaning in store
  • Assist guests with questions, problems, or emergencies

Qualifications:

  • Cash handling experience preferred
  • Great customer service and communication skills
  • Enthusiastic and outgoing personality
  • Ability to communicate effectively with others  
  • Basic computer skills
  • Able to work weekends, holidays, special events, and evenings
  • Proven reliability
  • Ability to pass background check
  • Ability to work outside in all weather conditions
  • Some areas require the ability to stand for long periods of time

Pay Rate:
Hourly rate varies

Start Date:
approximately April 1, 2016

To apply:
Please submit a Blank Park Zoo application by e-mail: zoohr@blankparkzoo.org or mail: Blank Park Zoo, Human Resources, 7401 SW 9th Street, Des Moines, IA 50315 or drop off in person during regular zoo hours.

 

 

Summer Safari Instructor
Reports to: Summer Safari Camp Coordinator

JOB SUMMARY:
The Blank Park Zoo is accepting applications for a Summer Safari Camp Instructor. Ideal candidates will be highly motivated, friendly, and child-oriented. Candidates must be available to teach summer camp beginning mid-May through mid-August. 

ESSENTIAL DUTIES:

  • Instructs students attending summer camps
  • Develops curriculum under the guidance of the Education Program Manager & Camp Coordinator
  • Orders and prepares materials necessary for daily instruction and activities
  • Responsible for the safety of summer camp participants
  • Supervises teen volunteers that assist with classes
  • Communicate with parents on a daily basis

EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS:
Must be currently enrolled in, or graduated from a college or university majoring in education, environmental interpretation, theater, biology, zoology, psychology or related field

SKILLS/EXPERIENCE/QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Knowledge of the principles of biology, zoology, or environmental interpretation
  • Ability to plan, organize, and develop educational materials and presentations
  • Ability to effectively communicate with people of all ages
  • A strong desire to work with and teach children
  • Ability to talk with large groups of people
  • Ability to work in a team environment
  • Ability to work outside in all weather conditions

REQUIREMENTS:

  • Possession of a valid driver’s license
  • Proof of current vehicle insurance
  • Capable of lifting 50 pounds
  • Must be available to work Monday-Friday between the dates of mid-May to mid-August
  • Must be available to work a flexible schedule between the hours of 7am – 6pm
  • Ability to pass a background check
  • Must be 18 years or older

TO BE COMPLETED UPON HIRING:
Background check

Pay:
$9.00/hour 

Application Deadline: March 1, 2016

To Apply:
Please send cover letter, resume, and zoo application to zoohr@blankparkzoo.org (please specify position you are seeking in subject line of e-mail) or mail to: Blank Park Zoo, Human Resources, 7401 SW 9th Street, Des Moines, IA 50315 or drop off in person during regular zoo hours.

 

 

Seasonal Education Animal Presenter
Reports to: Education Program Manager

JOB SUMMARY:
Ideal candidates will be highly motivated, enthusiastic, and strong public presenters. The position works with a collection of small animals and bio facts to teach the zoo visitors and community about life science and the environment. Candidates must be available to work May through August with some opportunities before May and after August. Evenings and weekends are required.  

ESSENTIAL DUTIES:

  • Travels the state conducting education programs. This includes public speaking to small and large groups, handling a variety of small animals and driving distances.
  • Develops presentations for Zoo visitors
  • Learn animal handling procedures and assist with care of education animal collection
  • Interact with the public in the zoo’s Critter Corner and other education stations
  • Supervises teen volunteers that assist with programs

EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS:
Must be currently enrolled in, or graduated from a college or university majoring in education, environmental interpretation, theater, biology, zoology, psychology or related field

SKILLS/EXPERIENCE/QUALIFICATIONS:

  • Knowledge of the principles of biology, zoology, or environmental interpretation
  • Ability to plan, organize, and develop educational materials and presentations
  • Ability to effectively communicate with people of all ages
  • A strong desire to work with and teach children
  • Ability to talk with large groups of people
  • Ability to work in a team environment
  • Ability to work with all animals used during our education programs and special events
  • Ability to be approved to drive a zoo vehicle
  • Ability to drive distances to conduct programs
  • Ability to work a flexible schedule including evenings and weekends
  • Must be 19 years or older

REQUIREMENTS:

  • Possession of a valid drivers license
  • Proof of current vehicle insurance
  • Capable of lifting 50 pounds
  • This position requires travel throughout the state of Iowa

TO BE COMPLETED UPON HIRING:
Background check

Hours:
Must be available to work weekends and evenings

Dates of position:
Beginning and ending dates are flexible within the period of April – October 

Pay Rate:
$9.00/hour

Application Deadline: March 1, 2016

To Apply:
Please send cover letter, resume, and zoo application to zoohr@blankparkzoo.org (please specify position you are seeking in subject line of e-mail) or mail to: Blank Park Zoo, Human Resources, 7401 SW 9th Street, Des Moines, IA 50315 or drop off in person during regular zoo hours.


 Internship Opportunities  

Summer 2016 Conservation Internship
Application Deadline:  March 1, 2016

The Blank Park Zoo is now accepting applications for a 2016 summer conservation internship. This internship is for college credit and is open to a college student with an interest in wildlife conservation. It is nonpaid; housing and transportation are the responsibility of the intern. 

Interns are required to be here for eight weeks, starting May 18 – August 12.

The Conservation Intern will assist BPZ Conservation Manager with general wildlife conservation tasks, while learning about various conservation principles including (but not limited to) the following:

  • In-situ conservation (in the wild)
  • Ex-situ conservation (within zoos)
  • Conservation messaging to various audiences
  • International wildlife conservation organizations
  • Zoos and Aquariums Committing to Conservation (ZACC)
  • Conservation fundraising
  • Green zoo operations
  • Conservation education
  • Conservation marketing, social media
  • Event planning
  • Pollinator conservation

Requirements:

  • College student in good standing, studying zoology, ecology, conservation biology, or related field
  • Proof from university that the internship will be for college credit
  • Successfully complete a background check
  • Capable of lifting 50 lbs.
  • Willing and able to work in all weather conditions
  • Available to work 8 -16 hours per week, Monday – Friday, 9:00am -4:00pm, for a minimum of 8 weeks and a maximum of 10 weeks, may include some weekends
  • Experience with Publisher and Excel preferred, but not required
  • Must be comfortable with public speaking
  • Must have excellent writing skills
  • Select and execute a project with the help of the Conservation Manager, which will be presented at the completion of the internship.
  • Complete BPZ intern courses 

To apply:
Please send a Conservation Intern Application, resume and cover letter to: Christine Eckles, Volunteer Manager, 7401 SW 9th St, Des Moines, IA 50315 or email: cneckles@blankparkzoo.org. 

The Conservation Intern Application can be found here


Application Deadline:  January 15, 2016

 


Summer 2016 Animal Care Internships
Application Deadline:  March 1, 2016

The Blank Park Zoo is now accepting applications for the 2016 summer animal care internships. Internships are open to hard working, motivated candidates considering a career in zoo keeping.    Internships are nonpaid; housing and transportation are the responsibility of the intern. 

Internships are available in the Aquatics, Avian & Reptiles, Small mammal & Kids Kingdom (domestic), Education, and Large mammal/hoof-stock areas. Please see area descriptions for more information.  Summer intern dates are as follows: May 18– August 12, 2016.

Animal Care Interns will be introduced to general animal husbandry practices, including:

  • Daily cleaning and disinfection protocols
  • Animal observation and record keeping
  • Proper diet preparation
  • Exhibit maintenance
  • Public & volunteer interactions
  • Introduction to behavioral enrichment and training
  • Animal restraint and handling
  • Veterinary procedure participation
  • Problem solving

Requirements: 

  • 18 years or older, currently enrolled or recently graduated, from college 
  • Preference is given to those who are in the zoology, ecology, conservation biology, or related field
  • Must be a positive, effective team member and be able to establish professional working relationships
  • Test Negative for TB, test will need to be done and paperwork turned in by the first day.
  • Successfully complete a background check
  • Capable of lifting 50 lbs.
  • Willing and able to work in all weather conditions
  • Available to work 40 hours per week from May 18 – August 12, including weekends and holidays.
  • Previous animal care experience preferred, but not required.
  • Select and execute a project with the help of animal care staff, which will be presented at the completion of the internship.
  • Complete BPZoo intern courses.

To apply:
Please send an Animal Care Intern Application, resume and cover letter indicating department of interest to: Christine Eckles, Volunteer Manager, 7401 SW 9th St, Des Moines, IA 50315 or email: cneckles@blankparkzoo.org. 

Animal Care Intern Applications can be downloaded here


Application Deadline: March 1, 2016


Additional Information about Areas

Aquatics
Candidate must have interest in all types of aquatic animals. Species in this area include California sea lions, harbor seals, penguins, otters, amphibians, and marine and freshwater fishes. Interns will be expected to observe Pinniped training.  Interns, who have demonstrated appropriate public speaking skills, may be asked to help deliver the demonstration script. Coursework in aquatic ecology, animal behavior, or previous experience working with the listed species is highly desirable.

Birds & Reptiles
Animals in this department are located throughout the zoo in mixed species exhibits.  Motivated interns will gain knowledge about husbandry, training, and enrichment for a diverse group of birds and reptiles. This includes 50+ species of birds, from Finches to Ostrich and 6+ species of reptiles, Geckos to Aldabra Tortoise. Coursework in ornithology and/or herpetology is preferred.  

Small Mammals & Kids Kingdom
Primary responsibilities include husbandry, observations and enrichment in our Contact Area working with Nigerian Dwarf Goats, Llamas, Miniature Zebu and Prairie Dogs.  Proven individuals may have the opportunity to assist with the daily care of Bennett's Wallaby, Red Panda, and Golden-Headed Lion Tamarin.  Interns must be able to work independently, as well part of a team.  Experience with domestic livestock or corresponding coursework highly preferred.

Large Mammals/hoof-stock
Prefer reliable, enthusiastic candidates looking to gain experience working with exotic ungulates in a protected contact environment. While working closely with keeper staff, intern will gain knowledge in ungulate husbandry, training and enrichment. Species in this section include giraffe, black rhino and Bactrian camels.

Education
We are looking for an enthusiastic person who enjoys working with animals and kids of all ages. Interns will work with our Education Specialists to learn about husbandry for over 35 species of program animals including mammals, reptiles, birds, amphibians and invertebrates.  Interns will also learn how to properly handle animals and present them to visitors at the zoo or offsite.  Experience or coursework with small animals and public speaking is preferred but not required.

 

 

Special Events Intern
Department: Development
Reports to: Special Events Manager

Description:
Blank Park Zoo is looking for a responsible, energetic, self-starter who is highly motivated to assist with event planning efforts. The Special Events Intern is responsible for providing direct support to the events team for the 2016 summer season. The individual will assist with the logistical planning, coordination and implementation of public and private events at the Zoo. The position offers hands-on experience and the opportunity to gain new skills.

Responsibilities:

  • Assist Events Manager, Events Coordinators, Volunteer Manager and Development Department with tasks related to special events and development
  • Assist in fundraising, planning and execution of special events such as Zoo Brew, Dreamnight & Adventure Days Festival
  • Attend committee, department and staff meetings
  • Create and present an event-focused project throughout the summer
  • Represent Blank Park Zoo at community events
  • Conduct and facilitate event recap meetings
  • Additional tasks as assigned by the supervisor

Qualifications:

  • Must be currently enrolled in, or graduated from, a college or university majoring in public relations, communications, event planning or a related field
  • Possession of a valid driver’s license
  • Proof of current vehicle insurance
  • Capable of lifting 50 pounds on a regular basis

Start Date:
Position open until filled, requires 3 month commitment.

Hours:
40 hours/week. Evenings and weekends required. Position requires that the individual works each Zoo Brew (Wednesday evenings throughout the summer – 14 total). Ability to work in a variety of weather and temperature conditions. Schedule will be coordinated with the supervisor.

Compensation:
This is a paid position.

To Apply:
Please send cover letter and resume by February 12, 2016 to zoohr@blankparkzoo.org or the address below:

Blank Park Zoo
Attn: Special Events Manager
7401 SW 9th Street
Des Moines, IA 50315

 


Job Application

 

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