Tennessee Aquarium
  • 14-Feb-2022 to Until Filled (EST)
  • Chattanooga, TN, USA
  • Intern

Dr. Keller has been the veterinarian at the Tennessee Aquarium since 1991 and is adjunct Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine located in Knoxville. Students will spend approximately 20 hours per week with Dr. Keller and the remaining time will be spent rotating through the husbandry departments. Additionally, students will spend time with the veterinary assistant/technician, Shelby Ferguson. Shelby has been at the Tennessee Aquarium since 2021 and is a graduate of the University of South Florida in St. Petersburg. She is also the aquarium's sea turtle caregiver.


As part of your 2-week externship, you will gain experience in the realm of aquatic biosecurity and quarantine. Students will also be involved with the husbandry and medical concerns of various freshwater and marine fishes, penguins, psittacines, native birds, reptiles, and mammals ranging from Flying Squirrels to North American River Otters and Lemurs (the Tennessee Aquarium does not house marine mammals of any kind).


Key Responsibilities

  1. Learn about quarantine and aquatic biosecurity practices
  2. Acquire knowledge of water quality parameters through time in our water quality lab
  3. Observe/assist veterinary staff with medical issues concerning aquarium animals
  4. Assist husbandry staff with daily care of various aquarium animals
  5. Learn about the ecology/life history of exotic species
  6. Other duties as assigned

Key Requirements

  • Currently enrolled in an accredited veterinary college as a final year student graduating within the academic calendar year
  • Background knowledge in aquatic animals preferred
  • Good written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • Ability to lift and carry up to 50 pounds

Temporary, $100/day stipend up to ten days; 40 hours/week for two weeks, weekend/holiday/on-call may be required.


Interested candidates are asked to apply online through the Aquarium's INTERNAL career site at tnaqua.applicantpro.com/internaljobs/. Please be prepared to upload a resume, cover letter and unofficial transcripts during the application process.


Application is open year-round; students will provide their availability.


Tennessee Aquarium
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