A group of teenagers volunteer at the Audubon Nature Institute.

Audubon Nature Institute provides a safe and rewarding experience for all youth volunteers in our program. After careful consideration of local and federal COVID-19 regulations and recommendations, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our Jr. Aquarist, Jr. Ecologist, and YCC programs until further notice.

We are happy to share that we will be continuing with our Junior Keeper youth development program at Audubon Zoo. If you would like to be contacted when the application process for the junior keeper program opens, please share your interest below.

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Jr. Keepers

Smiling youth volunteers show off the training cart at the Audubon Zoo.

The Junior Keeper program at Audubon Zoo, provides a unique opportunity for the youth of our community to learn about animals, science, and the environment through hands on experiences  Junior keepers will enter our program as budding environmentalists and leave as the next generation of conservation heroes and leaders! We offer a wide range of opportunities to learn and grow within Audubon and out in our local community. We seek to provide our teens with the experiences and skills that will empower them to take action and become advocates for all wild places, both locally and globally.

Testimonials from past Junior Keepers

“...joining the Junior Keeper program is the best decision I have ever made. This program has solidified my early passion to care for animals as a career, given me unique and valuable learning opportunities, and has even shaped me as a human being. I have gained so much from this program: friends, a future career, knowledge, opportunities to practice leadership skills, the privilege of a speaking platform, lifelong mentors, and the chance to travel to different countries to assist with animal conservation...”

-Michael S.

“I’ve been fascinated by the zoo from a very young age. When I was younger, I went to the zoo almost every weekend, I went to Zoo Camp and wanted to work as a wildlife rehabilitator. My younger self would be so happy to see that I’ve been working as a youth volunteers at the zoo for almost four years now. Audubon has helped me develop my goals in life and has helped me work towards them. Volunteering allows me to educate people on the importance of wildlife conservation through one on one conversations with zoo guests. I now have a community where I can be around people who share the same values as me and are who are as passionate as I am. I have gotten the chance to meet adults who I can learn from and who are brilliant role models. Since I’ve become a volunteer, I’ve learned public speaking, leadership, the importance of communication, teamwork and so much more.”

-Shiloh S.

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