Congratulations to our newest group of Teen Volunteers, who graduated from their training class last month. These youths join a vibrant group of seasoned Zoo Teens who conduct face painting, craft, and information stations around the Zoo, enhancing our guests’ experience while educating them about important wildlife and conservation issues. This is no summer job; the Teens commit to volunteering their time for at least 6 hours per month for an entire year. They are an integral part of our Howl-o-Ween event, dressing in costumes and hamming it up for over 10,000 visitors over three nights. At Zoo Lights, they manage Santa’s Workshop so every child has the opportunity to share his or her holiday wishes with Santa. At both events, they sell items (glow products and photos with Santa) to raise funds for conservation. Each spring, the teens discuss and then vote on where to contribute their hard-earned funds. In 2014 they donated a total of $8,500.00 to field conservation projects around the world! Many teens choose to extend their commitment beyond their required year, and some have been a valuable part of the Zoo’s education team for 5 years or more. Do you know someone who is passionate about wildlife and conservation, and wants to share that passion with others? Encourage them to apply to be a Teen Volunteer at the Zoo next spring! Teens 13-17 are eligible for the program; applications are available online starting in February. Teen volunteers do NOT work with animals or behind the scenes. For more information about the program, click here!