Volunteer

Join our team of dedicated and passionate volunteers at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center!  Volunteers are helpful in many ways in a variety of capacities. In the process they may learn new skills, grow team dynamics, work towards personal goals, and contribute in a fun and meaningful way.

Volunteering at the AWCC was an amazing way to spend the Summer. I learned so much from the awesome people who work there about the resident animals and their wild counterparts. It was really fun to meet people from all over the world who are interested in animals too. I loved getting to share everything I learned with our visitors. I can’t wait to come back next summer! Monica, Docent Volunteer

Monica

Docent Volunteer

Docents

We are looking for dedicated volunteers interested in learning about our organization, mission, and wildlife that are eager to share their knowledge with others.

Docents support AWCC by helping visitors develop an understanding and appreciation of the wildlife we care for, their wild counterparts, and the awe-inspiring environment surrounding the sanctuary. To meet this goal, docents engage guests by offering educational opportunities and answering questions as guests view wildlife. Docents also have the opportunity to learn and present our free daily programs to guests.

For our Docent Program, AWCC is divided into service areas that each contain a variety of wildlife life. Docents select service areas based on their interests. During a day of service, docents will be tasked with making rounds in their service area, helping with free daily programming, or assisting with other education department needs. Using educational tools and biofacts, docents engage guests while enjoying time in the sanctuary. Docents receive a naturalist-led training about wildlife living at AWCC focusing on their areas of interest. Service days vary in length to suit the schedule of the docent and Education department and vary in frequency.

The best candidates for the docent program are those that are able to volunteer weekly.

Our volunteer needs vary through the year due to fluctuating visitor numbers and seasonal changes on site. Our highest volunteer need corresponds to our highest visitation during the summer months. However, we have docents on our team year-round.

We are currently accepting applications for docent volunteers year-round. To apply to be a docent, fill out the application and email it along with your resume to volunteer@alaskawildlife.org. Please title the subject line “Volunteer Application_Docent.

Monica-kobuk-docent-photo

An AWCC docent hosting a program with Kobuk the black bear.

Benefits:

  • Gain valuable hands-on experience
  • Contribute to furthering AWCC’s mission
  • Receive discount of 10% on gift store purchases while volunteering
  • Free admission to AWCC

Requirements:

  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • No experience necessary
  • Be able to work independently as well as part of a team
  • Comply with AWCC policies and procedures
  • Record of current Tetanus and COVID-19 vaccinations

Extended Stay Volunteers

The extended stay volunteer program is a unique experience that gives participants the short term and rigorous opportunity to join our team, learn about AWCC operations, and gain valuable career skills. These dedicated volunteers are interested in learning about our organization, mission, and wildlife. They add value to our programs, don’t mind a little dirty work, and desire to share their knowledge.

This opportunity is unique amongst our volunteer programs as it gives participants the short-term and rigorous opportunity to join our team, learn about AWCC operations, and gain valuable career skills. Extended stay volunteers will likely have duties in both our education and animal care departments including tasks such as presenting daily talks and tours, assisting with school programs, preparing diets, and cleaning habitats. Tasks in this program are given on a scale of responsibility starting with a training and orientation that includes learning about the animals in our care and shadowing staff. Tasks and opportunities from this point on vary, with new tasks and challenges assigned based on the volunteer’s ability to complete what is asked of them proficiently.

Volunteers in this capacity believe in our mission and desire to help us further it. This opportunity is ideal students looking to explore possible career paths, who are pursuing options to earn credit for an internship, or who have fellowship support through university or scholarship programs. These volunteers may apply to be under direct supervision of either our education or animal care staff. Those interested in pursuing careers strictly in areas such as animal care or veterinary work may be placed under the animal care department. Those interested in careers that include education or interacting with the public such as naturalists, rangers, outreach coordinators, and environmental educators may be placed under the education department. Please include your department preference in your application.

Our volunteer needs vary through the year due to fluctuating visitor numbers and seasonal changes. There are no specific start and end dates for this program, but availability is limited based on the terms of consecutive volunteer programs.

We are currently accepting applications for extended stay volunteers year-round. To apply for to be an extended stay volunteer, fill out the application and email it along with your resume to volunteer@alaskawildlife.org. Please title the subject line “Volunteer Application_Extended Stay.”

Grece Volunteer Page

An extended stay volunteer gets to feed Arnold a fireweed snack.

Benefits:

  • Skill building and career training
  • Hands on opportunities
  • Contribute to furthering AWCC’s mission
  • Live on site during full time service
  • Team member discount in gift store

Requirements:

  • Must be able to commit to a minimum 2 month full-time volunteer schedule
  • Minimum age for participation is 18 years old
  • Record of current Tetanus and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • Valid drivers license
  • Ideal participants are in a phase of career exploration

I loved the diversity of roles I had the opportunity to fill. Working with different departments as well completing an individual project made every day exciting and unique.

Chrysanthe Frangos

Summer 2022 Volunteer

Scouts

The AWCC is happy to work with scouts completing service projects for badges and awards.

Scouts and participants in other youth serving organizations working to earn badges and awards including Gold award, WoHeLo, Eagle Scouts, and more can reach out to AWCC regarding service project opportunities.

In the past scouts have furthered AWCC’s mission by completing projects such as building hutches and shelters for animals in our care. We have capacity for similar building projects as well as opportunities to facilitate activities, events, and temporary exhibits.

Scouts and Hutch

To inquire, please email volunteer@alaskawildlife.org with details about your group and project ideas or requirements.

Youth engage in service projects for a number of reasons; to connect more deeply to their community, contribute to causes they believe in, to grow personally and professionally, and so many others.
Lily

Director of Education

One-Time Groups/Corporate

Are you looking for a project for your company volunteer day?

AWCC provides meaningful opportunities to engage your team in volunteerism at our sanctuary. Group volunteer projects are a great way to boost team moral while giving team mates the opportunity to bond and develop trust. Some projects occur annually while others vary from year to year based on AWCC needs. Projects also range in need level, some projects require no special gear or materials, team members can simply show up to participate. Other projects may be seeking materials donation or sponsors to help complete them.

If you are ready to take your group out of the office and outdoors for a volunteer project, whether your group is new to volunteering or regularly serve your community, AWCC has a variety of exciting projects to help you build a stronger team invested in community service.

Benefits:

  • Have an engaging team building opportunity for your company or organization
  • Perfect for team building with new staff or completing annual community service goals
  • Have a fun and rewarding group experience with stories to bring back to the office
  • Create a deeper connection to our environment and community
  • Enjoy visiting AWCC after your volunteer project is complete

Requirements:

  • Group is represented by a program lead to coordinate details with AWCC staff and disperse details to participants
  • Participants at least 18 years of age
  • Program availability based on AWCC’s project needs
One time group plant a tree
A Group of one time volunteers help construct a North American porcupine habitat.

To inquire please email volunteer@alaskawildlife.org with details about your group and project ideas or requirements.

Animal Care Volunteers

An exciting opportunity we can now offer at the AWCC, our animal care department is accepting volunteer applicants specifically looking for experience in animal welfare and care. Volunteers in this position will have the opportunity to work with a professional staff, gaining insight into a competitive field for a lifelong career. Volunteers in this capacity will need to be able to offer a more consistent schedule since duties often require extensive observation, training, and implementation.

Daily duties will vary depending on season, but typically a volunteer in animal care can expect to be tasked with commissary duties (diet preparation, etc.), as well as browse collecting, shoveling, and other various husbandry tasks. As consistency and proficiency develop, additional tasks and opportunities may arise.

Benefits:

  • Skill building and career training
  • Hands on experience
  • Contribute to furthering AWCC’s mission
  • Team member discount in gift store
  • Possibility of on-site housing for full-time, long-term volunteers

Requirements:

  • Must be able to commit to a consistent schedule with a minimum time frame of 2 months
  • Minimum age for participation is 18 years old
  • Record of current Tetanus and COVID-19 vaccinations
  • Valid driver’s license
Ollie the Volunteer feeding moose

To apply for an Animal Care Volunteer position, fill out the application and email it long with your resume to volunteer@alaskawildlife.org. Please title the subject line “Volunteer Application_Animal Care.”

The best part was getting to learn the personalities of the animals and interacting with them on a daily basis!
O. Landauer

2020 AC Volunteer

Volunteer feeding muskox

An animal care volunteer bonding with two of our muskox orphans.

Volunteer feeding muskox

A docent holds one of his favorite tools for interpretation at AWCC – a wood bison skull.

Highway Clean Up Volunteers

Two docents scrub antlers to help us prepare for our Paint An Antler event.

Highway Clean Up Volunteers

Volunteers help keep our sanctuary and surrounding areas clean by picking up along the highway near our entrance.

I ended up staying 1 month longer because I couldn’t bear to leave! B. Rosenberg, 2021 Animal Care Volunteer

Discover the WILD of Alaska and come meet the locals! Walk on the Wild Side Tours are available year-round. Moose Encounters & Bear Encounters begin June 1st. Book early as tours sell-out quickly.