Internship Programs

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Become a Sea Life Park Intern

Sea Life Park Hawai'i offers several types of un-paid internship opportunities near Honolulu, including: Marine Mammal Care & Training, Seabird Care & Rehabilitation, Veterinary Technician, and Educator Experiences. Many interns receive course credit for their internships. We will be happy to work with your college or university to develop a program tied to your academic goals.

Our internships are ideal for students who love marine animals and want hands–on experience working with them. Internships may also involve individual research projects. Those working within the marine mammal departments will also have the opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge of animal training through a unique phase training program. This allows individuals to familiarize themselves with the training techniques and terminology used at Sea Life Park Hawai'i. All of our animal related internships require our interns to participate in food preparation for the animals of the park, so applicants must be comfortable working with frozen fish.

Internship Opportunities


Marketing & Sales Experience
Interns will gain experience and assist the Marketing Manager & Group Sales Manager with the assembly of marketing campaigns and materials and administrative duties for all Sea Life Park local promotions & group events. Marketing interns will assist in the coordination of print advertisements, online advertisements, and photo and content upload to Sea Life Park’s Facebook page when needed. Interns will provide assistance where needed for film shoots, group events, and administrative tasks.

Photo & Video Experience
Interns will gain experience operating both photo and DVD equipment to produce images of guests during their interactive programs and luaus. Interns will capture photos and videos of guests with dolphins, sea lions, sting rays, and even sharks! Interns will have the opportunity to be trained by an experienced team; while learning how to edit photos, videos, and maintain equipment.

Aloha Experience
Aloha interns will get to work primarily with dolphins. These interns have the opportunity to assist with dolphin training, husbandry, interactive programs, and observe some of our younger dolphins learning new behaviors. If your main focus is dolphins and learning about guest interactions, this is the internship for you!

Lagoon Experience
Dolphin Lagoon interns will work with dolphins and sea lions involved in our shows, exhibits, and interactive programs. These interns get to assist in training, husbandry, and interactive sessions with dolphins; as well as learn basic showmanship and show production skills during the daily Sea Life Park Hawai'i Dolphin Lagoon Show. Interns also assist in the daily training, care, and educational presentations with our sea lions and penguins.

Hawaiian Experience
Interns in the Hawaiian Experience get to assist with husbandry, training, and shows involving our dolphins, sea lions, and penguins. Interns may also assist with basic husbandry of our Hawaiian monk seal, and help trainers during our sea lion interactive program. If you are interested in shows, and have a love for sea lions this is the internship for you!

Educator Experience
Education interns will work with our in-house and outreach education programs. In our classroom, interns have the opportunity to assist with program instruction and curriculum development at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. Interns also participate in park activities, the development of educational and interactive displays, and community programs. This experience allows interns to participate in a wide variety of activities, as well as learn all of what Sea Life Park Hawaii has to offer.

Veterinary Technician Experience
Interns will work with a large variety of marine mammals, as well as penguins, sea turtles, reef fish, and seabirds. In our veterinary department, interns assist our staff with the husbandry and treatment of all animals housed in the park. Interns also help with lab procedures, sample processing, and record keeping.

Wings Experience
Interns work with a large variety of healthy and rehabilitating seabirds. At our Seabird Sanctuary, interns assist in the husbandry and treatment of non-releasable species of seabirds. At our Seabird Rehabilitation Center, interns help our veterinary staff with seabird medical treatments, husbandry, and reintroduction into the wild.

Internship Program Candidate Requirements

Candidates must:

  1. Be at least 18 years of age
  2. Be enrolled in or have graduated from a university or college
  3. Commit to the full internship time period
  4. Be able to financially support her or himself (Internships are un-paid, but lunches are included daily).
  5. Have strong swimming skills and be physically able to work in in-water interactive programs with marine mammals and other species
  6. Be comfortable with public speaking
  7. Be comfortable handling frozen fish

Accepted applicants must:

  1. Attend all required seminars and training courses
  2. Commit to a minimum of 40 hours per week (including nights and weekends)
  3. Be able to lift 50lbs.

Applications Submissions

Application Packets must include:

  1. Application
  2. Two letters of recommendation
  3. College transcript(s) – an unofficial copy is fine
  4. Statement of interest
  5. CV or resume

Statement of Interest
Please include a 1–2 page typed statement of interest that explains your reasons for applying, your background information, your interests, your academic and field related experiences, and your personal goals for the Sea Life Park Hawai'i internship.

Submission Instructions
To apply for a Sea Life Park Hawai'i Internship Program, download and complete the application below, attach all required materials, and mail to the address below or to: .
Download Internship application

Education Supervisor
Sea Life Park Hawai'i
41-202 Kalaniana'ole Highway #7
Waimanalo, Hawai'i 96795

**Be sure to save a copy of your application. Your application will not be processed unless your transcripts, letters of recommendation, resume, and statement of interest are included. Due to the high number of applicants, you may not be accepted into your first internship choice.

Internship Availability Dates

Period Dates Application Deadline
Summer 2017 May 16-August 15, 2017 February 17, 2017
Fall 2017 August 8, 2017-January 9, 2018 May 12, 2017
Spring 2018 January 2-May 25, 2018 September 29, 2017

Internship Acceptances

Applicants will be notified through email of their acceptance into the program within two weeks after the application deadline. The selection process is completed by scoring all components of your application (application, letters of recommendation, transcripts, statement of interest, and resume) on a matrix. Those applicants with the highest combined scores will be selected.

Please note that we typically receive more than triple the number of applications for the summer period, so chances of being accepted are greater in the fall and spring sessions.

Important Information

Housing is not included and interns must cover their own living expenses. If accepted, the contact information of all new incoming interns and that of the current interns will be distributed so that the new interns may contact one another to find roommates; and contact the current interns to see if they can assume their rentals. Generally with roommates, expect to pay between $600–1000/month.

One free hot or cold lunch will be provided from our restaurant for the interns on each scheduled day.
Food preparation for our animals is a component of this internship and all animal care and vet tech interns are required to participate. Interns need to be able to lift 50lbs.

Medical Insurance is not provided by Sea Life Park Hawai'i. Should any incidence occur you will be responsible for payment or insurance coverage.

Internship FAQ

Do I need experience?
Certain internships require you to have basic knowledge of the subjects you will be learning about; however, you are not required to have previous experience for most of our internships.

Who should apply?
Anyone wishing to start a career in Animal Training, Education, or Veterinary Practice should apply. Each area, with the exception of education, will have a chance to take part in food and diet preparation in addition to working in their areas. Please keep in mind that food preparation is a vital role in working with animals, so be prepared to work with frozen or thawed fish. All applicants must meet the minimum requirements stated on the website.

Does it cost anything to be an intern or will I get paid?
The internship is unpaid. There is no program fee, but you will be expected to provide your own housing, food, and transportation.

How many hours a week am I expected to be at Sea Life Park Hawai'i?
You will be expected to be in your area 5 days a week, which is about 40 hours a week. Interns must be able to meet the time requirements for the entire length of the internship. If you need to leave early due to school, you must get approval prior to the start date of the internship.

Can I get school credit?
If you wish to get academic credit, we will work with your college or university to assist you with this process.

How do I get around?
Interns are responsible for acquiring their own transportation. Many interns choose to use the public transportation system called "The Bus" to get around. Sea Life Park Hawai'i is in the town of Waimanalo.

Below are the approximate travel times from various locations on The Bus:

Waimanalo: 15-25 minutes
Kailua: 30-45 minutes
Downtown Honolulu: 45-90 minutes (depending on transfer)
Waikiki: 45-60 minutes
Hawai'i Kai: 15-20 minutes

Routes 22, 23, and 57 service Sea Life Park. Please be aware that fish prep starts at 6:00 am and that some bus routes from certain locations don't run so early. Schedules for The Bus can be found at Interns that live in Waimanalo may be able to reach the park by bike. As there are no bicycle lanes, travelling this way may be risky. Some interns decide to buy a car together for transportation.

What will the temperature be like in Hawai'i?
On O’ahu, the average temperature in the summer ranges from mid to upper 80’s and the minimum is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperatures are a bit lower in the winter with highs in the 70’s and lows around the mid 60’s. It can be very humid and rain very hard sometimes. If you are coming for the fall or spring intern session, please note that it rains more often in the winter months.

How much does it cost to live in Hawai'i?

Housing expenses are quite variable depending on the individual preferences. Interns frequently share housing so the cost is approximately $600-$1000 a month.

Food Costs
Interns are responsible for their own food. You will receive one meal for each of your scheduled days, in which you will be at the park for your internship. Please be aware that food costs in Hawai'i are considerably higher than you may be used to.

Health Insurance
Sea Life Park Hawai'i does not provide health insurance for interns. Please look into obtaining insurance during your internship session. Try to get or stay on your parent’s policy, get a travel plan through your current provider, or sign up for an individual plan in Hawai'i.

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