Differences Between the Level 1 and Level 2 Internship

Have you ever wondered how you get a job as a marine mammal trainer? 

Hello, my name is Cristina and I have been a trainer and intern coordinator at DPMMR for about 2 years now, and in that time we have expanded the internship into two separate levels; one focused on foundational skills and another focused on advanced concepts. When we came up with the idea of a level 2 internship, it was surrounded by the thought that this extended internship would be almost like a seasonal apprentice trainer position and the duties definitely reflect this. 

The level 1 Animal Care & Training Internship is designed to give participants practical hands-on experience with marine mammal care, including participation in all aspects of the daily care & training of our Atlantic bottlenose dolphin population. Level 1 Interns can expect to work alongside our Level 2’s and animal care staff as they progress through a detailed training practicum, providing foundational skills that they may use in the Level 2 internship and or their first paid job in this field. These practicums focus on building a strong foundation in psychology, operant conditioning and training techniques and the duties focus on day-to-day operations such as the educational briefing, deep cleaning, and husbandry assisting. 

The level 2 internship dives deep into the understanding of training principles and practical application. Participants of DPMMR’s level 1 internship may apply and be accepted to participate in the level 2 internship up to a year after completion of the first level as a prerequisite. This extended internship will build off of the knowledge and training learned in level 1; including but not limited to- creating and implementing a behavior pyramid for a novel behavior, learning how to prepare husbandry materials, talking guests through interactions with our dolphins, and having the opportunity to earn a bridge to use under staff supervision. Level 2 interns also have the responsibility of training and clearing level 1 interns on certain tasks, building their leadership and organizational skills. This advanced internship has a strong emphasis on hands-on training and gives participants the opportunity to gain necessary problem solving skills needed to obtain an entry level position within the animal care field. 

So, if you are interested in a career working with marine mammals, choosing to participate in an internship such as the level 1 and level 2 will help get you there. DPMMR accepts intern applications year round for any one of our 4 intern sessions: Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter. You can visit our website to apply and learn more about our programs. We look forward to seeing your application! 

Posted by DPMMR Staff at 10:45