Junior Zoo Crew 

Please read all information on this page before beginning your application.

Junior Zoo Crew (JZC) is a hands-on educational program in which selected teens spend a three-week session assisting in the Children's Zoo, educating zoo guests, and learning what it takes to work at an AZA accredited facility. Applicants MUST be at least age 14 by May 31th, and no older than age 17 on the final day of the session to which they are accepted.

Important Dates

  •  April 12th: application period closes at 4:00 P.M.
  • May 14, 15 or 16: All accepted crewmembers MUST attend an evening training WITH a parent/guardian.
  • Session 1: June 10th - 29th, with mandatory trainings on June  4th & 5th.
  • Session 2: July 1st - July 20th, with mandatory trainings on June 4th & 26th
  • Session 3: July 22nd - August 10th, with mandatory trainings on June 4th & 17th

Ready, Set, Go!

READY: Apply

NEW applicant process:

  • Submit the online application at the bottom of this page, which includes uploading a letter of recommendation
  • Attend an interview at Idaho Falls Zoo
  • Receive an acceptance or denial email to the JZC program within 14 days of interview

RETURNING crewmember process:

Please remember, returning applicants are not guaranteed reacceptance into Junior Zoo Crew each summer.

  • Submit the online application. Letters of recommendation are NOT required for returners
  • Receive an acceptance or denial email within 14 days of submitting your application

Each year, ALL accepted teens must: 

  • Submit a new medical reference (reference form provided after acceptance)
  • Attend ALL assigned trainings
  • Pay tuition fee(s); see below
Junior Zoo Crew teens


A tuition fee is charged for each three-week session a teen is accepted to participate. Tuition for each session is $72.00 for Tautphaus Park Zoological Society members, and $90.00 for non-members (pre-tax). ALL FEES ARE NONREFUNDABLE. Instructions for paying tuition are provided after acceptance to Junior Zoo Crew. 

SET: Train

Each year, ALL crewmembers must attend mandatory training sessions. The first training is held in mid-May, and requires a legal guardian to attend with their teen. Further training dates are dependent upon the session to which a teen is accepted.

GO: Work it!

Junior Zoo Crew members are assigned three shifts per week. On their nine assigned days, crewmembers arrive at the zoo at 9:15 A.M. and are dismissed at 3:00 P.M. A a lunch break is provided mid-day (participants must provide their own food). Saturdays and/or holidays may be required.

Junior Zoo Crew is a significant commitment. Please apply only to sessions you KNOW you are able to participate from start to finish. In an effort to accommodate participants' other summer plans, Junior Zoo Crew sessions have been shortened to three weeks each. As such, crewmembers may not request days off during their session(s).

apply here

Crewmember Perks

  • Free admission to the zoo for you (not your family/friends) during your session  
  • Experience working with animals
  • Training with zoo staff
  • Meeting peers with similar interests
  • Accumulating volunteer hours
  • Interacting with people of all ages and backgrounds while improving public speaking skills


Contact the volunteer coordinator at kfarley@idahofallszoo.org or (208) 612-8453