Students

Youth Programs

We are engaging the next generation of leaders in science, engineering and biology.  Discover ways to become involved with our industry-leading programs, tailored for students 11 to 17 years old.

Our exciting Job Shadow Program allows students in grades 6 to 12 to gain a glimpse into the aquarium world. Students get the opportunity to observe jobs that keep the Aquarium afloat, like that of an aquarist, an educator or a mammal behaviorist. This school year, the program will be offered on October 9, 2017 (Columbus Day), January 15, 2018 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day) and February 19, 2018 (Presidents’ Day).

How to apply:

1) Complete the application form below.
2) Write a 300-word essay describing why you are interested in participating and what you hope to gain from the experience.
3) Secure a letter of recommendation from an adult, non-family member (preferably a current teacher).
4) Submit the form, essay and recommendation letter to:

South Carolina Aquarium
Attn: Ashley Zalabak
100 Aquarium Wharf
Charleston, SC 29401

Application dealines:

October 2, 2017      (for October 9 Shadow Day)
January 8, 2018      (for January 15 Shadow Day)
February 12, 2018    (for February 19 Shadow Day)
Parents will be contacted by phone or email one week before the Shadow Day if the student is selected to participate. Contact Ashley Zalabak with questions at azalabak@scaquarium.org or (843) 579-8531.

Application Form

Our Splash Program is designed for 13- to 17-year-old students to volunteer with a parent or guardian as Exhibit Guides at cart stations and in our galleries. These volunteer teams spread the Aquarium’s mission with special emphasis on education and conservation while simultaneously providing exemplary customer service. Teams can participate in either our summer or year-round Splash Program.

How to apply:

1) Write a typed, one-page essay expressing why you and your parent/guardian would make a great volunteer team. Indicate the program for which you are applying (summer or year-round), and include contact information for both of you.
2) Provide a letter of recommendation from a non-relative adult (like a teacher, scout leader, coach or pastor). Make sure your reference includes his/her daytime phone number in the letter.
3) Submit the essay and recommendation letter to us by either mail or email:

South Carolina Aquarium
Attn: Volunteer Services
100 Aquarium Wharf
Charleston, SC 29401
volunteer@scaquarium.org

SUMMER SPLASH PROGRAM

Application deadline:

Friday, March 23, 2018
All teams selected for further consideration will be contacted for an interview. Interviews will be scheduled in April 2018.  Teams accepted into the program will begin volunteering in May 2018, after attending mandatory orientation and training(s).

Commitment:

Students and parents invited to participate in the summer Splash Program are committed to volunteer for a minimum of one shift a week for 10 weeks. (Shifts available: Monday – Friday, 8:30am-1pm and 12:30-5pm; Saturday – Sunday, 8:30am-12pm, 11:30am-2:30pm and 2-5pm)

YEAR-ROUND SPLASH PROGRAM

Application deadline:

Essay and letter may be submitted at any time.
All teams selected for further consideration will be contacted for an interview. Teams accepted into the program will begin volunteering after attending mandatory orientation and training(s).

Commitment:

Students and parents invited to participate in the year-round Splash Program are committed to volunteer for a minimum of one shift a week for one year. (Shifts available: Monday – Friday, 8:30am-1pm and 12:30-5pm; Saturday – Sunday, 8:30am-12pm, 11:30am-2:30pm and 2-5pm)

Our Aquateen program is an intensive seasonal opportunity for 16-and 17-year-old students to volunteer as Exhibit Guides at the Aquarium during the summer. As Exhibit Guides in the Education department, Aquateens interact with guests at the Aquarium’s various exhibits, including the Touch Tank, educational carts and animal handling stations. The goal of an Aquateen is to convey the mission of the Aquarium with special emphasis on fun, education, conservation and providing an exceptional guest experience. To be eligible, students should be 16 or 17 years old at the time of the program and have a strong interest in science and the environment.

How to apply:

1) Complete the application form below.
2) Write an essay describing experiences you have had with customer service and public speaking and any strengths or skills that uniquely qualify you for the program.
3) Provide a resume with a summary of your experience, skill set and accomplishments.
4) Include a letter of recommendation from a non-relative adult, such as a teacher or job supervisor.
5) Submit your materials to us by either mail or email:

South Carolina Aquarium
Attn: Meghan Galipeau
100 Aquarium Wharf
Charleston, SC 29401
mgalipeau@scaquarium.org

Application Deadline:

April 30, 2018
All students selected for further consideration will be contacted for an interview. Interviews will be scheduled in May 2018.  Students accepted into the program must attend orientation and training classes held at the Aquarium in May and June of 2018. The program starts in June and continues through August of 2018. Contact Meghan Galipeau with questions at mgalipeau@scaquarium.org or (843) 579-8621.

Commitment:

Students selected should plan to volunteer at least two, four- to five-hour shifts per week from June through August. Shifts can be in the morning or afternoon and may include weekdays and weekends.

Internship Opportunities

Every year, ten eleventh grade students are selected to form an elite group through the Aquarium’s competitive and award winning High School Internship Program.  This once in a lifetime opportunity offers Charleston area students real life work experience in a unmatched work environment.

The South Carolina Aquarium High School Intern Program is an opportunity to become a paid intern for 11th grade students in the Charleston area who qualify for free or reduced school lunch. Each spring, students attend training classes to learn about animals, ocean science, career development and team building skills. Ten students are then chosen to continue on as paid summer interns, working with marine educators and biologists throughout the summer.  Students may participate in the High School Internship program only once.

The High School Intern Program is made possible by donations from generous partners including: Alcoa Foundation, Boeing South Carolina, Google, SCE&G, and VWR Charitable Foundation.

Requirements
  • Be a current 11th grade student
  • Have a strong interest in animals and the environment
  • Qualify for free or reduced school lunch

Two references from teachers must be submitted; one must be from a science teacher. Two teachers must complete a reference form. Reference forms must be submitted in order to be considered for an internship. All applications are due by November 3, 2017.

Important Dates

Application Deadline: Nov. 3, 2017
Interviews: Nov. 28 – Dec. 14, 2017
Acceptance Mailed: Dec. 14 – 30, 2017
Parent Orientation: Jan. 3, 2018 7:00 pm
Training Classes: Jan. – April 2018
Second Interviews: May 2018
Internship Orientations: May – June 2018
Summer Internship: June – August 2018 (8 weeks)
Family Night: June 2018

All application materials must be completed and sent to:

After receiving your application and teacher references, an Aquarium team member will contact you to set up an interview. Applicants who are accepted will participate in training classes at the Aquarium from January – April. Classes will meet once a month on Saturdays from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Participants will be evaluated on interest, commitment and progress shown during the training classes. In April, participants will be interviewed again by Aquarium team members. Based on these evaluations, 10 participants will be chosen for paid internships with our education staff. Internships will be 20 hours/week, $9/hour, and will last for eight weeks during the months of June – July.

Mail to: South Carolina Aquarium, Attn: Ashley Zalabak / HS Intern Program, 100 Aquarium Wharf, Charleston, SC 29401

Application Form   Teacher Reference Form

The South Carolina Aquarium has various opportunities for students to engage in meaningful, hands-on learning through our college internship program. This practical learning gives students the chance to gain real-world experience and learn job responsibilities. Current positions are listed below.

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