http://www.jbzoo.org

John Ball Zoo

Camp Counselor

May 2017 • Grand Rapids, MI

What I liked

I love this job, every day is interesting, and I’m learned so many new things. The past 3 summers here have been an exciting adventure every time!

What I wish was different

Advice

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Zoo Guide

May - November 2019 • Grand Rapids, MI

What I liked

John Ball Zoo is an amazing place to work. Not only is the atmosphere awesome but so are all of the staff members. I loved the flexible work schedule, outdoor environment and chance to work with and learn about 100s of animals. Even if working at the zoo is not your long term goal, it is a great opportunity to widen your knowledge and perspective about the world and animals.

What I wish was different

Honestly, there really isn't anything I didn't like. The pay could be a little better, but as a seasonal position it is very comparable to other seasonal jobs.

Advice

Don't be afraid to put yourself into a job that pushes you outside of your comfort zone. While I am great at talking to people, I knew nothing about animals going into this and the major part of my job was educating about animals and conservation. Doing something new and different is a great recharge opportunity and will benefit you in any job you have in the future.
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LVT

August 2016 • Grand Rapids, MI

What I liked

I like how ever day is different and I enjoy working with all of the different species of animals.

What I wish was different

I wish we had less meetings

Advice

If you really want a career like mine keep trying. It may take years to get into a zoo but anyone can do it if they try hard enough.
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Experiences

April - August 2018 • Grand Rapids, MI

What I liked

The friendly family like coworkers

What I wish was different

The schedule being let out late

Advice

Be open to an different opertunities offered to you
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Animal Care Intern

May - August 2017 • Grand Rapids, MI

What I liked

This was an amazing internship that gave a lot of hands on experience. I was able to rotate through all areas of the zoo including animal care, education, and nutrition/diet prep. I was also able to work with a large variety of animals, from chimpanzees to frogs. It was a great experience and I took a lot away from it.

What I wish was different

I honestly wouldn't change anything about this experience. I meet wonderful people and was sad to go at the end of the summer.

Advice

Be confident in your self and make connections with people. The people who are already in the business are the best to learn from and can even help you in your future job search.
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Food and Beverage Runner

May - August 2018 • Grand Rapids, MI

What I liked

Good hours, work well around schedule, very friendly and sociable coworkers

What I wish was different

Advice

Be prepared to work but is a lot of fun in the long run
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Experiences Facilitator

May 2018 • Grand Rapids, MI

What I liked

Being outside was great. It was also cool working on the ropes course and the zip line.

What I wish was different

I wish there was more communication between management and the employees. There were several times where I heard important news from the customers instead of my manager.

Advice

Have patience with people. This job involves dealing with a lot of parents and kids.
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