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Employment Opportunities: Employment

Veterinary Internship

Full Time Temporary With Benefits

This is a one year position. The intern veterinarian will spend 8 months at the Aquarium of the Pacific providing veterinary services (examination, diagnosis, medical and surgical treatment) to the animal collection under the supervision of the staff veterinarian. The collection consists of pinnipeds, sea otters, penguins, sea birds, parrots, sea turtles, amphibians, fish and invertebrates. When the staff veterinarian is not present the intern veterinarian will follow existing treatment plans and protocols and consult with the staff veterinarian prior to any changes. It is imperative that the intern veterinarian understand AOP’s team approach to animal care decisions and the approval process before handling, moving, or treating an animal. The intern veterinarian will spend 4 months offsite at the Marine Mammal Care Center LA, located in San Pedro California, practicing marine mammal medicine and rehabilitation under the supervision of the staff veterinarian. MMCCLA is a nonprofit marine mammal rehabilitation hospital for sick and injured marine mammals that strand in Los Angeles County. The annual caseload varies between 350-600 animals, typically pinnipeds.

  • Hours: 40+ hours per week plus shared on call shifts, weekends, and holidays.
  • Compensation: $49,920/year plus benefits (insurance, vacation)
  • Employment period: July 15, 2020 to July 14, 2021
  • Application Deadline: October 31, 2019


  • Veterinary degree from an AVMA accredited university
  • Must have a license to practice veterinary medicine in the State of California
  • Demonstrated previous aquarium or zoo training (externships, internships)
  • Completion of a 1 year clinical veterinary internship desirable
  • Pass a pre-employment physical exam
  • Must be able to communicate effectively in English
  • Must adhere to veterinary medical ethics and maintain professionalism consistent with the position

Aquarium of the Pacific

Major responsibilities:

  • Provide veterinary services (examination, diagnosis, prescription, and surgery) to the animal collection under the supervision of the staff veterinarian.
  • Provide on call veterinary services as scheduled (after hours, weekends, holidays) shared with the staff veterinarian. Must be able to be onsite within 30 minutes of call.
  • Complete all pertinent records for examinations and treatments and ensure continuity of care (rounds) between shifts.
  • Assist the veterinarian and veterinary technician with hospital and equipment upkeep.
  • Actively participate in continuing education opportunities such as journal club, professional meetings, and aquarium educational lectures.
  • Fulfill the Aquariums mission statement through support and collaboration with other AOP departments (PR, Education, etc.)
  • Adhere to Federal and State regulations regarding veterinary medicine and adhere to AZA and Aquarium Policies.

Marine Mammal Care Center LA

Major responsibilities:

  • Provide veterinary services (examination, diagnosis, prescription, and surgery) to sick and injured pinnipeds under the supervision of the staff veterinarian and follow National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) guidelines.
  • Assist the staff veterinarian, husbandry manager, staff, and volunteers in procedures including, but not limited to: physical examinations; restraint; tube feeding; blood draws; tagging; administration of medication; food and fluids; anesthesia; bandaging and wound maintenance; surgical preparation; radiographs; euthanasia; necropsies, release examinations.
  • Perform in house diagnostic laboratory sample collection, processing and shipping.
  • Keep records as required by NMFS regulations and work cooperatively with NMFS stranding network partners and collaborators.
  • At times the veterinary intern may be required to assist with husbandry duties such as food preparation, animal feeding, pen cleaning, and any other duty required to meet the needs of the animals.
  • Check and maintain medical and surgical equipment, inventory, and order supplies if needed.
  • Obtain HAZWOPER certification and assist in emergency procedures associated with oil spill response if necessary.
  • Work and communicate professionally within a team environment including staff, volunteers, and veterinary students.
  • Communicate the mission and work of MMCCLA to the public while on or off site while maintaining the confidentiality of protected information.

Physical Demands

  • Ability to lift and carry up to 50lbs
  • Full function all range of motion in all major body parts
  • Ability to stand for long periods of time
  • Able to walk up and down ladders
  • Able to work with various laboratory chemicals
  • Able to work with venomous animals
  • Able to operate a variety of micro and large tools, syringes, surgical equipment.

Working Environment

  • Surfaces may be slippery
  • Wearing of personal protective equipment may be required
  • Work is physically demanding as many animals are quite large
  • Weekend, evening and holiday work may be required
  • Emergency cases and changes in planned shifts may require flexibility in scheduling
  • Sick and injured animals are unpredictable and serious injury and exposure to zoonotic diseases are an inherent risk of the job
  • Natural death or euthanasia of patients within rehabilitation standards are possible outcomes
  • Hot and cold environments
  • Outdoor and indoor environments in varying weather conditions
  • Wet and dirty surfaces and walkways
  • Elevated platforms
  • Aquarium habitats and open ocean environments
  • Uneven surfaces
  • Confined spaces
  • Underwater environments
  • Noisy work spaces

Interested or Qualified?

If you meet the requirements of this position, click on the link below to “APPLY NOW.” You will be directed to our web application process, the successful completion of which is required by all applicants. There are THREE simple steps to this process, which is administered by HireSelect.:

  1. You will complete a brief web application;
  2. You will attach or build your resume;
  3. You will complete the PCI aptitude assessment.

Upon completion of all THREE steps, your submission will be forwarded to our hiring team for consideration. If you are among the most qualified applicants, we will contact you within two to three weeks. If you do not hear from us within that time, feel free to reapply in the future as other opportunities arise. Thank you so much for your interest in the Aquarium of the Pacific! The Aquarium of the Pacific is an Equal Opportunity Employer.