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 September 3, 2018 (Labor Day), January 21, 2019 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day), and February 18, 2019 (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:

August 27, 2018       (for September 3 Shadow Day)
January 14, 2019     (for January 21 Shadow Day)
February 11, 2019    (for February 18 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 22, 2019
All teams selected for further consideration will be contacted for an interview. Interviews will be scheduled in April 2019.  Teams accepted into the program will begin volunteering in May 2019, 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)

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 Intern 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 Intern 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 2, 2018.

Important Dates

Application Deadline: Nov. 2, 2018
Interviews: Nov. 27 – Dec. 13, 2018
Acceptance Mailed: Dec. 13 – 29, 2018
Parent Orientation: Jan. 2, 2019 7:00 pm
Training Classes: Jan. – April 2019
Second Interviews: May 2018
Internship Orientations: May – June 2019
Summer Internship: June – August 2019 (8 weeks)
Family Night: June 2019

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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