Volunteers are the heart of our mission to save animals

Volunteer PROGRAM

About the Program

For individuals ages 16 years and older

Volunteers are ambassadors for Woodland Park Zoo and an important part of our zoo team. We seek individuals who are excited about engaging with the zoo’s mission to save wildlife and inspire everyone to make conservation a priority in their lives.

The primary focus of our volunteers is engaging with zoo guests by offering assistance and information, facilitating extraordinary zoo experiences and helping at a variety of special events. Once in the program, volunteers also have the opportunity to apply and interview for positions in other aspects of the zoo's operations including horticulture, education and leadership roles within the Volunteer Program.

Our program offers all volunteers opportunities to continuously learn more about conservation and animals, and to make an impact every day through this active role in the zoo community.

Current WPZ Volunteer VIC Access


Volunteer Program Requirements

The Woodland Park Zoo Volunteer Program requires interested individuals to:

  • Be at least 16 years old
  • Demonstrate commitment to the highest standards of customer service
  • Have enthusiasm for people, animals and conservation
  • Commit to the Volunteer Program for a minimum of one year
  • Meet the minimum service requirement of 70 hours per year
  • Attend one Volunteer Program info session
  • Successfully complete zoo ambassador training and mentorship

Read more about volunteer training, activities and positions


Learn More and Apply!

Thank you for your interest in our program! Our next recruitment season will begin in December 2024.

You must be at least 16 years old and attend a virtual info session to apply for the Volunteer Program. During this info session, you will learn about volunteer expectations and benefits, training requirements, and current volunteer opportunities. You will have the chance to see what sparks your interest, ask questions, and decide if our program is right for you! Applications are only available after attending a virtual info session.

2025 Info Session Dates

We will announce the 2025 info session dates on December 1, 2024. Please fill out this form to sign up for an email notification on or before December 1, 2024

Sign Up for Notifications

Woodland Park Zoo is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodation in attending the info session and/or application process, contact Volunteer Program staff at volunteer@zoo.org.


Teen Ambassador Program


New Volunteer Program!

Join us as a part of a new volunteer cohort program for high school students at the Woodland Park Zoo!

Through this upcoming summer program, teens will have the opportunities to bring a youth voice to inspiring conservation actions, connecting with guests about wildlife and conservation, and fostering community with fellow teens. The Teen Ambassador program is geared towards high school students that want to create empathy connections between our guests, animals, the environment, and communities.

Applications are closed

If you are interested in this program, updated information and applications will become available in Spring 2025.


Accessibility and Accommodations

At the Woodland Park Zoo, we are committed to creating an environment that fully includes and supports all individuals, recognizing the diverse needs of our community. We strive to seamlessly integrate accessibility and accommodations into every aspect of our services, programs, and employment opportunities, ensuring that everyone can participate fully and equally.

For any assistance, information, or support you may need to engage fully in the Teen Ambassador Program—from the application process to interviews and beyond—please do not hesitate to contact our Volunteer Program Staff at volunteer@zoo.org. We are here to ensure that your experience is as inclusive and accessible as possible.

For more information on what a shift as a Teen Ambassador could look like, click here to check out our Social Story to learn more! Some details may be subject to change.



Service Projects

Service Groups are accepted on a limited basis, please email corpengagement@zoo.org to request information.


Contact Us

Volunteer Program

If you cannot find the answers to your questions about volunteering or need additional help please contact program staff at volunteer@zoo.org or 206.548.2450 (email preferred).

Our Mission

Woodland Park Zoo saves wildlife and inspires everyone to make conservation a priority in their lives.

Land Acknowledgment

Woodland Park Zoo recognizes that these are the lands of the Tribal signatories of the Treaty of Point Elliott. We acknowledge their stewardship of this place continues to this day and that it is our responsibility to join them to restore the relationship with the living world around us.

5500 Phinney Ave. N., Seattle, WA 98103   |  206.548.2500  |   zooinfo@zoo.org

Association of Zoos & Aquariums
Seattle Parks & Recreation
Humane Certification