In 1997, TCWR established an internship program for students desiring more experience in the care of exotic cats and animals. Intern applicants are college graduates with degrees in the fields of zoology, biology, animal psychology, veterinary sciences, and other animal related areas.
Internships are available for 6 months and TCWR provides housing, a small stipend, and learning experiences for 12 students at a time. Several colleges (and zoos) across the country recommend Turpentine Creek as a model in exotic animal care; and typically over 100 students from across the country apply for these 12 positions each 6 month period. Some of the universities represented by our interns include Texas A & M University, University of Illinois, University of Nebraska, Humboldt State University, University of Florida, Ithaca College, University of California, Colorado State University, and Brigham Young University.
As of August, 2011, over 1,200 students have applied for our prestigious internship program, and more than 300 college graduates have completed a six month internship at TCWR. Many of these interns have ultimately gone on to work in zoos and other establishments throughout the U.S. and abroad and many have continued their pursuits of education in veterinary medicine.
This internship program has also provided a means of recruiting needed expertise. Six of the college graduates who have interned at TCWR have returned as permanent employees. TCWR staff now includes two zoologists and four biologists.