Volunteer & Internship Opportunities

Volunteer Opportunities:

At the Aquarium of Niagara, we value our volunteers! 

We have many exciting volunteer opportunities available, in nearly every area of the aquarium.  Volunteers may prepare animal diets, provide enrichment for our animals, or interact with and educate our guests, plus much more! 

Please note that while most volunteers love helping our animals, your safety and the safety of our animals is paramount. There is no guaranteed animal contact or interaction. Working with our animals is considered a privilege, which comes with intensive training and a considerable amount of dedicated time. In fact, volunteer contact with our birds and mammals is uncommon.


  • Volunteers are required to give a minimum of 4 hours (one shift) per week.
  • Volunteers must commit to being available at least 4 consecutive months each year.


Some schools may offer academic credit for your volunteer work.  Work-study may be available to students who can meet the volunteer requirements, or can complete an approved work-study project.

Community Service:  At this time, we cannot facilitate community service hours, which do not meet the above requirements and the volunteer requirements for the organization and department.



Education Volunteers and Docents
The education department enriches the aquarium guest-experience by providing information about our animals in as many ways possible.  Education delivers Discovery Cart programs, school programs and outreach, touch tank programs, and daily public talks. Volunteers and interns may help with the delivery of these programs.

  • Volunteers needed daily from 8:00 am – 4:30 pm, full or half day shifts available.
  • Ages 15 years and older.

For more information or questions, please call 716-285-3575 ext. 225.

Fish, Invertebrates, and Birds (FIB) Volunteer
This department, known as FIB, works behind the scenes to care for the Aquarium’s aquatic displays, including our colony of Humboldt penguins. Volunteers and Interns will help to prepare animal diets, water quality, maintain clean and healthy areas, and assist with enrichment.

  • Volunteers and interns needed daily from 7:30 am- 4:00 pm, full or half day shifts available. 
  • Ages 18 years and older.

Marine Mammal Care (MMC) Volunteer
This department works with our rescued marine mammals. Volunteers will help with preparing the diet for the animals, observing the animals and shows, as well as keeping their areas clean and healthy and assisting with enrichment.

  • Volunteers are needed daily from 7:30 am- 5:00 pm. Full and half day shifts available.
  • Ages 18 years and older

Internship Opportunities:

Learn from the pros! -Work with our talented and knowledgeable team, in an AZA accredited facility!

Our internships provide specialized experiences to recent college graduates and advanced students interested in an aquarium-related career.

Please review the requirements for each internship opportunity.  If you are unable to meet the requirements, please consider a volunteer or work-study role with us! Some schools may offer academic credit for our various programs.  Internships are unpaid.

Qualifications for internships:

  • Minimum of a college junior in a biological or environmental science, psychology, education, or another related field

*Recent graduate preferred

  • Must be available to work at least 30-40 hours per week
  • Must be able to complete a 10-14 week term
  • Interns are needed daily from 7:30am- 5pm. Full and half day shifts available. Schedule may be somewhat flexible. 

Fall Semester Deadlines:

  • Deadline to apply: Thursday August 1, 2019
  • Orientation: Saturday August 17, 2019 (all day)
  • End of term party: Friday December 6, 2019 (after hours)



Education Internship
Opportunities available year-round

Duties may include, but are not limited to assisting with the following:

  • Deliver educational programs in public spaces throughout the Aquarium
  • Assist with children’s programs such as field trips and day-camps
  • Outreach and offsite programs including fairs, festivals as needed
  • Administrative assistance as needed

For more information or questions, please email [email protected]

Fish, Invertebrates and Birds (FIB) Internship

Opportunities available year-round

While interning with the FIB department you are expected to work alongside staff members to maintain and care for all fish, invertebrates, and birds housed at the facility. Interns will assist in daily care, on-going research, and other departmental projects.

Duties may include, but are not limited to assisting with the following:

  • Water Quality Testing: Monitoring pH, specific gravity, nitrogen cycle analysis
  • Health Maintenance: Specimen checks, visual inspection vitamins, temperature control
  • Feeding Routine: Food preparation, raising live food, assisting with small and large feedings
  • Tank Maintenance: Filtration systems, setting up systems, partial water changes, cleaning and general upkeep

For more information or questions, please email [email protected]


Marine Mammal Care (MMC) Internship

Opportunities available year-round

A full-time internship with the Marine Mammal Care department is designed for college students and recent graduates. The internship will be instrumental in gaining increased experience with California sea lions, harbor seals and grey seals. Selected interns will work closely with the marine mammal staff and will be trained.

This department works with our rescued marine mammals. Duties may include, but are not limited to assisting with the following:

  • Health Maintenance: Visual inspection, behavior observations, vitamin distribution
  • Feeding Routine: Food preparations, weighing and cleaning of food fish, veterinary procedures
  • Assisting in the weighing and measuring of the animals
  • Training Techniques: Understanding operant conditioning observing training demonstrations
  • Record Keeping: Recording food and vitamin intake, maintain health records and training progress sheets
  • Husbandry and Maintenance: Equipment maintenance, cleaning holding and living areas,  cleaning food preparation room, filtration procedures
  • Water Quality Testing: Chlorine monitoring, pH analysis

For more information or questions, please email [email protected]