What is a Utica Zoo Docent?
A zoo docent is a volunteer, teacher, interpreter or guide who is dedicated to educating the public about the environment, wildlife, conservation, and the Utica Zoo. They dedicate at least 40 hours of volunteer service a year.
What does a docent do?
*Assists with education classes both on and off zoo grounds
*Promotes the zoo’s mission by acting as a zoo ambassador and educating the visiting public on important conservation topics through the use of bio-facts, live animals, exhibit interpretation and other educational tools.
*Leads guided educational tours
*Helps during special events
*Participates in animal enrichment activities
*When certified, handle ambassador animals for programs and animal socialization
*And many more…
How do I become a Docent?
Anyone looking to become a docent must be at least 18 years of age, and must apply online. We also recommend that anyone looking to become a Utica Zoo Docent have at least a two-year college degree. References will be required, and if the application is accepted all applicants must submit to a background check. Once cleared, all new docents are required to attend a Docent Training Course. The Docent training course will cover very important information that all of our docents are required to know, and maintain knowledge of.
To apply click here: Volunteer Application Form
There is a $40 volunteer onboarding fee which covers training, a docent shirt, and fees for online volgisitics.
Docent Training Course: class location inside the zoo will be announced upon registering
Spring 2021 – Courses offered in January and May – Register for details
Looking to get your kids involved with the Utica Zoo? Want them to learn about what happens behind the scenes at the zoo? Sign them up to join the Utica Zoo Crew! Great for kids aged 12-17! Visit our Zoo Crew page for details!
Are you a college student interested in pursuing a career in environmental or formal education? Gain experience this summer at the Utica Zoo! Our hands on education internship offers students the opportunity to teach people of all ages about the importance of the natural world and promote positive conservation practices.
Summer education internships are full-time (32-40 hr/wk). These positions are unpaid and interns are expected to have their own housing and transportation; Housing is also available through our local community college if needed. Proof of a negative Tuberculin test is required (must be within 6 months of the start of the internship).
Interns are required to participate in daily education presentations and will also be assisting with zoomobile programs, zoo camps, and birthday parties. Preference is given to students with public speaking experience and/or students enrolled in environmental science, ecology, outdoor/environmental education, elementary education, or any science education program.
For more information or if you have any questions, contact the Utica Zoo Education Department at 315-738-0472 ext. 36
For Animal Care Internships, please Click Here.