Thank you for your interest in becoming a Zoo Support Volunteer at the Small Mammal Exhibit at the National Zoo.

Please fill this form out completely. If you wish to include a resume with your application, you can attach it to the application (PDF only, please!).

These positions are highly competitive and there are limited spaces available. Submission of an application is not a guarantee of placement.

The Smithsonian Institution and FONZ are committed to providing the safest environment for our staff and volunteers, as well as for our guests. Selected applicants will be interviewed by keeper staff, and those that are provisionally accepted must be cleared by the Health Unit and must pass a Smithsonian background check which includes fingerprinting as a requirement for approval as a Zoo Support Volunteer prior to beginning to volunteer.

If you are a current or former volunteer please log in before filling out this form. Go to to sign in with your email address and password or for a link to reset your password.

New User Details
Basic Information
Please note: if you are not accepted to a program, we will keep your application on file for three months, and then will delete it.

Home Address

Emergency Contact Address

General Medical Information
Have you ever volunteered with or worked for FONZ or the Smithsonian's National Zoo?
Have you ever held a volunteer position before?
Do you have any previous animal care experience? Explain briefly.

Background and References
Have you been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor in the past seven years, other than a minor traffic offense, which has not been pardoned or expunged from your record?
(Conviction of a felony or misdemeanor will not automatically disqualify you from employment)

Please list TWO references: one employment supervisor or teacher and one non-family member reference:

To ensure the safety of our volunteers, staff, and the animal collection, all provisionally accepted candidates must successfully complete an onboarding process that includes:

  • A Smithsonian background check
  • A review of volunteer policies, and your agreement to abide by those policies
  • Online and in-person safety training
  • Clearance from the Smithsonian's health unit (you must show proof of tetanus vaccination within the last ten years, and of TB testing within the last year)

Our commitment to safety means the completion of the onboarding process will be strictly enforced. Noncompliance with the onboarding process will result in volunteer status being revoked. Please check the box below to indicate you understand and will complete the onboarding process, and that all the information you have provided in this form is true.