Marine Animal Training Internship Program

If you are considering a career in the marine mammal field, our internship program is an excellent way to start. You will receive valuable experience that will assist you in achieving your future goals. Our volunteer-based internship program is designed for college students and recent graduates who are serious about pursuing a career working with marine mammals. The Gulfarium houses a variety of marine animals including bottlenose dolphins, California sea lions, Harbor seals, Asian small clawed otters, and African penguins. Interns will deliver formal microphone presentations, prepare diets, maintain cleanliness of all areas, record husbandry data, and observe training techniques.  (All Gulfarium internships are unpaid, voluntary positions)

Interns will:

  • Learn and practice public speaking techniques by conducting daily microphone presentations about the resident animal species. These presentations should be entertaining, accurate, and inspire conservation action.
  • Learn and execute proper food preparation procedures.
  • Complete daily exhibit cleaning and maintenance.
  • Assist with veterinary procedures
  • Practice effective communication between all staff and fellow interns
  • Learn techniques of operant conditioning by observing training sessions with all animals using positive reinforcement
  • Participate in weekly Trainer Lecture Series with accompanying quizes
  • Monitor animal areas and provide exemplary guest service
  • Perform other duties as assigned


  • Must have completed at least one year of undergraduate schooling
  • Commitment of 5 days a week for a three month period
  • Ability to work varied shifts/weekends/holidays
  • Ability to work in all weather conditions
  • Ability to lift 50 pounds 
  • Computer proficiency in Microsoft Word and Excel
  • Excellent teamwork skills
  • Good public speaking skills
  • Good swimming ability
  • Open Water SCUBA certification preferred, not required


Session Dates Application Deadline
Summer (May – August) February 15th
Fall (August – November) June 15th
Spring (February – May) December 15th

Application Procedure

All interested parties must submit the following:

  • Completed job application
  • Resume
  • College transcripts (official or unofficial are both acceptable)
  • One page essay with your answer to ONE of the following questions:
    • There are varying views on housing animals in human care. Please discuss the pros and cons and explain your stand on the issue. 
    • Working with marine animals can be very rewarding yet also demanding and competitive. Please discuss what you believe to be the rewards and challenges of working in this field as well as the strengths you possess to help you succeed.


Applications can be mailed to:

Gulfarium Marine Adventure Park
Attention: Marine Mammal Intern Coordinator
1010 Miracle Strip Parkway SE
Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548

Documents can be scanned and emailed to:

2018 finest of Emerald Coast Award Accredited by the Alliance of Marine Mammal Parks and Aquariums Accredited by the International Marine Animal Trainers Association Destin Area Chamber of Commerce Member Greater Fort Walton Beach Chamber of Commerce