This program offers interns hands-on experience in Georgia Aquarium’s AT&T Dolphin Coast gallery. Interns are exposed to animal care and training activities related to Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Interns work directly with the animal trainers to support the daily care of the collection. Interns are provided the opportunity to interact with and learn from the Animal Training staff about animal conditioning of dolphins for both shows and guest interaction programs. Through observation and mentoring Interns learn area responsibilities that directly benefit the animals which include: diet preparation and feeding, water sampling, commissary clean-up, exhibit/area maintenance, behavioral observations, environmental enrichment, data recording and data entry, assisting trainers with animal training and handling and other duties as assigned. Throughout the internship participants partake in departmental development curriculum including: natural history, theories of animal behavior, food fish handling, safety and a diverse 9-week lecture series presented by intern mentors. Each intern must demonstrate proficiency in every module by completing written exams, tests and quizzes. Interns will also be provided the opportunity to become CPR/First Aid Certified, if needed.
This internship involves substantial physical labor, and therefore interns must be able to climb stairs and ladders and should be capable of lifting at least 50 lbs. All interns are supervised or overseen by approved Aquarium staff at all times during their program, but can benefit from demonstrating the ability to work independently and as part of a team. This internship also requires a regular schedule of 5-days per week and includes weekends and holidays (hours vary based on the department’s needs). Previous animal care experience is not necessary. This is an experience-based, unpaid internship.