Interns assist staff in animal and plant management, public education and visitor services and gain valuable educational career building experiences within Como’s unique zoological and botanical environments. Click here for more information.
Here are some of the ways you can be involved as a volunteer at Como. Please note that current opportunities vary based on availability and seasonal needs. Current volunteer position openings are noted on the application form.
- College Internships – Education, Horticulture and Zoo internships are available throughout the year. Click on the link above for position applications and requirements.
- Visitor Greeter – Welcome and assist visitors in finding attractions and special activities. Share information about the day’s schedule.
- Interpreter (Public Education) – Welcome visitors and help our guests enjoy a fulfilling zoo and conservatory experience by sharing information about animals, plants and the relationships among all living things.
- Day Camp Assistant– Have fun with children as they learn about plants and animals. Assist teachers during weekday morning or afternoon sessions during the Summer.
- Education Assistant– Work side by side with Como’s Education staff assisting with classes and special events. Work may be with children or adults.
- Gardener Aide– Assist gardener staff in seasonal cultural care of the ornamental landscape & gardens throughout the Como Campus.
- Horticulturist Aide– Assist horticulturist staff in production and cultural care of plants throughout the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory and greenhouse facilities.
- Special Events Assistant– There are several ways to be involved if your schedule doesn’t allow for a longer term commitment, but you are interested in helping 3 or 4 times a year.
- Commissary Assistant– Assist zoo keepers with diet preparation, general housekeeping and other assigned tasks or projects. This position requires a weekly commitment of at least six months and will require an interview with a keeper.
- Group Opportunities– Groups are key in helping us address seasonal grounds maintenance and many are involved in making our events successful, too.
- Free training
- Valuable experience
- Gift shop and café discounts
- Newsletter subscriptions
- Invitations to special volunteer recognition events
How to Become a Volunteer
Join our volunteer team in just 2 easy steps:
- Click here to complete our online volunteer application.
- Wait to hear from us. We respond to all volunteer application requests.
Contact us by email at ComoVolunteers@ci.stpaul.mn.us or call 651-487-8252.
Youth Volunteer Opportunities
There are several ways youth can be involved with Como’s mission. Our two largest programs are the Nature Walk program and the Youth Engagement Program.
The Nature Walk Program is a summer volunteer opportunity especially for youth with a strong interest in the natural world and a passion to share their knowledge with others. The program is open to students going into 7th grade through incoming 12th graders. Interested students are able to apply from January 1st-March 1st.
The Youth Engagement Program (YEP) at Como Park Zoo and Conservatory is a program for any youth entering 9th – 12th grade in the fall of 2019 who have a desire for gaining knowledge in the conservation field. YEP will offer youth a unique environment to learn from professionals in their respective field, have fun and give back to the community. Como asks that youth who join YEP come with an open mind and the desire to be engaged.
YEP will include two 5 week sessions with a culminating event after the conclusion of the second session. Three weeklong sessions will be offered this summer. Applicants can apply to any or all of the three sessions. We may gather at Como on certain days, but often will be taking field trips into the community. The application period is open until April 30th. You are encouraged to apply and share your excitement with friends who may also be interested in joining.
Click here to apply for the Youth Engagement Program
Other Youth Volunteer Opportunities
Day Camp Assistants– 16 years or older
For those students who loved their own experience as a camper, they can help us create that same experience for our summer campers. Volunteers will help the camp instructor with getting projects set to go before camp, help keep campers together when out on the zoo grounds or in the conservatory, prepare snack, etc. Basically serving as another set of hands to help keep campers safe, engaged and having fun! This position is available throughout the summer, June – August.
Interpreting or Special Events as a team
Do you have a student who is passionate about plants or animals, enjoys talking with people, would like to help us by spreading their enthusiasm for Como campus but they’re not quite old enough to volunteer on their own? We welcome youth ages 12 and older to get trained with a family member to get trained to interpret in an area. The interpreter role requires a once a week or every other week commitment. Looking for something a little less frequent? A family team could join us as special event volunteers, working at a table to facilitate games or activities during our monthly weekend themed events.
Fundraising or awareness raising in the classroom
Our partners at Como Friends have several ways students can try to help further our mission with their peers. Check out their Kids for Como page!
Other questions or ideas?
None of these feel like a good fit for you? Give us a call or send us an email and we can see if we can come up with a way to have you join us!