Job Opportunities

Join us because Riverbanks Zoo and Garden is a great place to work and grow!

It takes an incredible team of talented people to operate one of America’s best zoos. Be a part of what makes Riverbanks Zoo and Garden so remarkable! Riverbanks and Service Systems Associates offer a variety of full- and part-time job opportunities at the Zoo and Garden in an exciting and dynamic work environment.

Riverbanks Zoo and Garden — Administration, Animal Care, Education, Guest Services, Grounds, Horticulture, Housekeeping, Maintenance and Public Safety

An exciting multi-million dollar major expansion is underway at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden, promising a world-class guest experience at every turn. Come grow with us! Riverbanks is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Benefits of Employment with Riverbanks vary for full-time and part-time employees.

  • State health and life insurance plans.
  • State retirement plan.
  • State credit union eligibility.
  • Sick and vacation leave.
  • 50% discount in riverbanks restaurants.
  • 20% discount in riverbanks gift shops.
  • Employee of the month recognition program.
  • Employee activities and celebrations.
  • Employee membership.
  • Free guest passes each year.

Current Job Openings with Riverbanks (last updated on November 17, 2017)

Riverbanks accepts applications via an online submission process only for current open positions; walk-in applications are not accepted. To apply, click on the online application button for the position you are interested in below. All applicants will receive notice of receipt of their application by an electronic auto-response; however, only the top candidates for each position will be contacted via telephone. If you are not contacted for an interview, please be assured that your resume will be kept on file for one year should a similar opportunity arise.

Horticulturist - Habitat Horticulture - "PLANT KEEPER"

Full-time
Posted: 10/11/17
Grade 8
Salary: $12.62/hr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:
Under general supervision, performs horticultural duties for the purpose of beautifying and maintaining gardens, exhibits, animal habitats, plant collections, and/or public displays.  Must be eager to learn about our collection. The best candidate will demonstrate creativity and be able to work both independently and with a team on a variety of tasks and priorities. Works outdoors year-round in all weather conditions. Reports to the Director of Zoo Habitat Horticulture.

Education and Experience:
Associates degree in Horticulture, bachelors degree preferred, with two years experience in a horticultural area; or any equivalent combination of education, training, and experience that provides the required skills, knowledge and abilities.  Prefer professional horticulture experience and/or training.  Must possess or be eligible for a valid SC driver’s license.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Chief Operating Officer (COO)

Full-time
Posted: 10/18/17
Grade 17
Salary: $Commensurate with Experience/yr

Ambassador Commitment:

Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:

Given objectives set by the President & CEO, is responsible for the strategic and day-to day-operation of Riverbanks Zoo & Garden. Maintains Riverbanks’ mission as a guiding principle in all decisions and actions. Creates and promotes a work environment and culture that reflects the Zoo's values, and continually reviews and reinforces the mission and vision of the Zoo and Garden. Accomplishes this by mentoring, managing, and providing inspired, forward-thinking, innovative leadership to senior managers in the following departments/functions: Guest Services (includes Admissions, Attractions, Grounds & Housekeeping, and Public Safety), IT Administration, and Facilities Management which includes Maintenance, Project Management, Exhibit Design, Life Support Systems and Dive Program.

  • Coordinates the activities of a committed team of senior executives in assigned areas. Works with them to develop short and long range objectives, policies, protocols, training and procedures that are in alignment with Riverbanks’ mission and strategic plan.
  • Develops and oversees a budget of approximately $4.7 million, with a keen interest in maximizing resources for effective operations.
  • Regularly evaluates and facilitates improved operations in assigned areas to ensure the effective and efficient support of the institution’s strategic plan and annual operating budget.
  • Works collaboratively with the senior management team, who report to the President & CEO, to plan and achieve organizational goals.
  • Cultivates and maintains effective relationships with Riverbanks Park Commission Members, Society Board Members, employees, donors, volunteers, and community leaders.
  • Provides assistance to the President & CEO in finalizing operations recommendations and preparing and delivering monthly operations progress reports for the Commission.
  • Determines and implements strategies and best practices to increase attendance, build image, increase revenue, and provide outstanding guest services.
  • Sets direction for Riverbanks’ public image and implements strategies to support that.
  • Contributes to various organization-wide initiatives and projects.
  • Some travel required to attend meetings, professional development opportunities or conferences.
  • Reports to the President & CEO.

Education and Experience:

Bachelors degree in a related field with 5+ years of operations management experience in a Zoo/Aquarium or related industry with a working knowledge of Admissions, Attractions, Public Safety, Grounds and Housekeeping, IT Administration, Facilities, and Life Support Systems. 5+ years of staff management experience at a senior level. A strong history of progressive management experience in an executive capacity.

The best candidate will be a proven leader in crisis management and have a strong safety background. Must be able to work a flexible schedule, and adjust working hours to meet special deadlines and projects. Will be called to respond to emergencies. Must be a strategic and creative thinker with strong oral, written and presentation skills. Ability to lead and manage people to accomplish major projects. Relationship and negotiation skills a must.

Energetic and pro-active leader. Ability to work independently without close oversight, but also a team player who will productively engage with others at varying levels of seniority. Skilled at handling multiple projects simultaneously, while working effectively and efficiently under deadlines. Knowledge of plant and facility management (trades, permitting, codes, etc.) building control systems, communication systems, building design and construction. Conflict resolution and problem solving skills required. Dedication to excellence and to the consistent fulfillment of Riverbanks’ mission.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Educator - Public Engagement - "KNOWLEDGE KEEPER"

Part-time (Schedule varies, availability Monday – Sunday, weekend work required)
Posted: 10/18/17
Grade 5
Salary: $10.45/hr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:
• Deliver highly engaging and empowering interpretive programs.
• Use suitable interpretive techniques while educating guests.
• Maintain a high level of enthusiasm while performing scheduled interpretive programs on a regular basis.
• Help to maintain a positive work environment and to work cooperatively and collaboratively in a team.
• Assist with administrative duties as needed including maintenance and inventory of animal artifacts, program materials, monthly reports, etc.
• Assist in the development and implementation of event days.
• Assist in the development of interpretive programming.
• Assist in administering an evaluation system for interpretive programming.
• Maintain a professional demeanor within the workplace.
• Provide outstanding customer service to guests, volunteers and staff.
• Perform other duties as assigned.

Education and Experience:
Must be enrolled in or be a graduate of a Bachelors program in Education or Science related field with presentation experience, or any equivalent combination of training and experience which provides the required skills, knowledge, and abilities.  A strong base knowledge of science is preferred as it relates to animals and plants. Must be comfortable handling animals including but not limited to small mammals, reptiles and birds as well as animal artifacts.  Must be CPR/First Aid certified. Must demonstrate enthusiasm and a commitment to high quality programming and care for our guests. Must possess or be eligible for a valid SC driver’s license.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Maintenance Supervisor - "UP KEEPER"

Full-time
Posted: 10/25/17
Grade 14
Salary: $41,550/yr

Ambassador Commitment:

Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:

Under general supervision, is responsible for training, developing, planning, scheduling and overseeing the work activities of the Maintenance personnel. Determines and prioritizes daily maintenance work; adjusts staffing to accommodate emergency situations. Assists in the management, planning and implementation follow up of in-house construction and renovation projects. Coordinates work with contractors and zoo staff. Responsible for communicating and coordinating exhibit/building closures for repairs and maintenance to minimize guest experience impact. Responsible for tracking usage and down time data (routine or requested) to ensure operations are running effectively and in a cost effective mode. Monitors departmental activity, maintains standards and makes recommendations for changes and improvements as needed. Coordinates the selection of labor, materials and supplies for Riverbanks maintenance. Provides support to the Director of Risk Management and Facilities in areas such as preparing and analyzing records and reports, developing and monitoring the departmental budget and compiling budget data, and developing and reviewing plans and specifications for projects. Reports to the Director of Risk Management and Facilities.

Education and Experience:

Associate’s degree in Engineering preferred, with three to five years of general construction and maintenance experience. Three or more years of management, project management, or supervisory experience preferred, or any equivalent combination of education, training and experience that provides the required skills, knowledge and abilities. Must possess or be eligible for a valid SC driver’s license.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Maintenance Technician-HVAC - "UP KEEPER"

Full-time
Posted: 10/25/17
Grade 13
Salary: $17.32 - $20.32 (commensurate with experience) /hr

Ambassador Commitment:

Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities: 

Under general supervision, is responsible for diagnosing, maintaining and repairing various heating, air conditioning and refrigeration devices and systems.  Replaces or repairs various industrial equipment, heat pumps, air conditioning units, electric strip heat, gas boilers, domestic refrigerators, water coolers, cold generators, window units, ventilation systems, chill water units, and life support systems for various animals, fish, and reptiles.  Works as a member of the maintenance team on various projects, doing HVAC and general maintenance and construction tasks.  Is responsible for responding to after hours and weekend HVAC equipment outages per the direction of the maintenance supervisor.  Reports to the Maintenance Supervisor. 

Education and Experience:

High school graduate with vocational/technical school training in HVAC courses with three to five years of experience in troubleshooting, repairing and installing HVAC systems; or any equivalent combination of education and experience that provides the required knowledge, skills, and abilities. Must be certified to purchase and recycle refrigerant gases.  Must possess or be eligible for a valid SC driver's license.Must be available to work weekends and on call as needed.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Housekeeper - 1st and 2nd Shift - "CLEAN KEEPER"

Part-time
Posted: 11/2/17
Grade 3
Salary: $9.42/hr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:
Under general supervision is responsible for the routine maintenance and upkeep of Riverbanks facilities. Works to maintain a high level of cleanliness throughout Riverbanks Zoo and Garden by following cleaning routines and responding to non-routine cleaning issues. Reports to the Environmental Services Manager.

Education and Experience:
High school graduate or equivalent, with five to eleven months of experience in grounds maintenance, or any equivalent combination of training and experience which provides the required skills, knowledge and abilities. Must possess a valid S.C. driver's license.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Registrar – Animal Division - "KNOWLEDGE KEEPER"

Full-time
Posted: 11/2/17
Grade 13
Salary: $36,035/yr
 
Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities: 
Manages and ensures the maintenance and quality of animal records for use in the management and development of husbandry and breeding programs, preparation of scientific publications, and provision of data for cooperative ventures at both the regional and international level. Advises various staff on legal and logistical aspects of animal collection activities. Participates with various staff in implementing and reviewing animal collection management objectives. Serves as a liaison and information source to other departments and organizations. Reports to the Chief Life Sciences Officer.

Education and Experience:
Requires a bachelor’s degree in one of the Biological Sciences or data management disciplines, plus two years experience in a registrar-type position in a zoological institution. Or any equivalent combination of education and experience which provides the required knowledge, skills and abilities. Must enjoy working within a collaborative environment that is mission-driven, in alignment with the Zoo’s core values.

The ideal candidate will have a strong history of working with zoo/exotic animals in a professional setting. Knowledge of concepts, principles, and practices of professional museum and zoo registration methods and collection management standards. Must be proficient with inventory accession and record-keeping practices, and zoological nomenclature. Knowledge of laws regulating animal acquisition, disposition, exhibition, husbandry standards, and transportation within the U.S. and abroad is required.

Experience with computers and animal records software (e.g., ZIMS) and Microsoft Office programs. Ability to collect and collate information from a variety of sources into concise and accurate reports. Possess strong typing, administrative, communication, and organizational skills. Attention to detail is a must.
Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Veterinary Technician – “HOSPITAL KEEPER”

Full-time
Posted: 11/3/17
Grade 10
Salary: $29,411/yr
 
Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things. 
 
Responsibilities:
Under general supervision, is responsible for assisting the Senior and Associate Veterinarians and providing support in the evaluation and treatment of animals. Performs diagnostic tests and radiographs of animals, monitors patients, maintains records and hospital cleanliness. Will assist with surgical procedures on our collection animals and daily care of ICU and neonatal patients. Provides care to wild native birds of prey received through the BB&T Raptor Clinic, as well as injured wildlife found on zoo grounds. Conducts all in-house laboratory analysis and proper sample handling and processing. As directed, fills prescriptions, administers treatments and interfaces with keepers on proper administration. Maintains pharmacy and clinical supply inventory.

Education and Experience:
Associate's or Bachelors degree in Veterinary Technology and one to two years of experience in animal care. Must be licensed in the state of South Carolina within one year of start. Must possess a valid S.C. driver's license. Excellent written, oral and group presentation communication skills. Must be proficient in MS Office, Word, and Excel. Must be energetic and detail oriented. Be able to work a flexible schedule, which will include weekends and/or evenings and holidays.
Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Admissions Attendant - "GATE KEEPER"

Part-time
Posted: 11/6/17
Grade 2
Salary: $8.18/hr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:
Under direct supervision, provides an outstanding experience to Riverbanks’ guests and Society members. Works in various point of sale areas throughout the park, including ticket booths, information booths and entrance gates. Handles purchase transactions. Communicates with the public about Riverbanks exhibits, attractions, services, and policies. Reports to the Guest Services Manager and the Director of Guest Services.

Education and Experience:
High school diploma and 4-6 months of work experience in customer service or any equivalent combination of education, training and experience, which provides the required skills, knowledge and abilities. Cashier experience and strong customer services skills are required.  Must be available evenings and weekends.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Director of Animal Collections

Full-time
Posted: 11/17/17
Grade 16
Salary: $Commensurate with experience/yr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:

Under broad objectives, is responsible for the overall management and administration of all activities related to the animal collection, animal division staff and animal holding facilities.  Is responsible for the development, and periodic review and revision, of the Animal Collection Plan and various Animal Division policies and procedures.  Oversees the maintenance, health, and welfare of the mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, fish and invertebrate collections, and commissary departments, as well as the Animal Division Registrar and Animal Division Swing Keeper. Works closely with the Veterinary Staff.  Reports to the Chief Life Sciences Officer (CLSO).

Education and Experience:

Requires a bachelors degree in one of the biological sciences with a minimum of three to five years experience at the general or departmental curatorial level; prefer advanced degree in the biological sciences with three to five years direct experience as a general curator; or any equivalent combination of education and experience which provides the required knowledge, skills and abilities. Experience working in an AZA accredited institution strongly preferred.

The ideal candidate will be able to work independently without close oversight, but also be a team player who will productively engage with others at varying levels within the organization.  Must have strong communication and supervisory skills.  Must be able to work a flexible schedule and adjust working hours to meet special deadlines and projects. Must be dedicated to excellence and to the consistent fulfillment of Riverbanks’ mission.  Must possess or be eligible for a valid SC driver’s license.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Educator – Programs (Family and Garden) – “KNOWLEDGE KEEPER”

Part-time (Schedule varies, availability Monday - Sunday)
Posted: 11/17/17
Grade 5
Salary: $10.45/hr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:

Under general supervision, the Educator of Family and Garden Programs is responsible for the coordination, development and instruction of a variety of programs offered by Riverbanks Zoo and Garden. The position will focus primarily on family programs, which include early childhood programs, free programs in the children’s garden, and family events. This position will also assist with maintaining the vegetable garden, youth garden programs, and adult workshops, as needed. Riverbanks seeks educators who are creative, energetic, flexible and passionate about environmental education. This position is both educational and customer service based. Reports to the Coordinator of Family and Garden Programs.

Education and Experience:

Bachelor’s degree in an education or science related field. 2-3 years experience delivering and planning formal/informal education programs for a wide range of learners. Must have a background in both gardening and animal content. Must have excellent written and verbal communications skills. The ideal candidate must demonstrate enthusiasm for nature and science and creativity in developing programs that will inspire enthusiasm in others. Must be available to work at special events that may be on weekends and/or evenings. Must possess or be eligible for a valid SC state driver's license.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Educator – Programs (Schools and Outreach) – “KNOWLEDGE KEEPER”

Part-time (Schedule varies, availability Monday - Sunday)
Posted: 11/17/17
Grade 5
Salary: $10.45/hr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:

  • Facilitate and develop education programs for groups of various ages, toddlers through senior citizens, both onsite and offsite.
  • Manage groups while leading them through engaging educational programming.
  • Implement lessons and programs that are written in accordance to Riverbanks and South Carolina education standards.
  • Assist with and develop programs to help scout troops reach badge requirements.
  • Provide excellent guest service to school teachers, chaperones, parents, families, scout leaders, seniors, and the general public.
  • Conduct program evaluations and respond to feedback.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.
  • Work under the direction of the Coordinator of Outreach and School Programs.

Education and Experience:

Must be enrolled in or be a graduate of a Bachelors program in Education or Science related field with some teaching experience, or any equivalent combination of training and experience which provides the required skills, knowledge, and abilities.  Must have a strong base knowledge of science as it relates to animals and plants. Must be comfortable handling animals (small mammals, reptiles, and birds) and animal artifacts.  Must be CPR/First Aid certified.  Must demonstrate enthusiasm and a commitment to high quality programming and care of our guests.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Maintenance Technician – “UP KEEPER”

Part-time
Posted: 11/17/17
Grade 7
Salary: $12.35/hr

Ambassador Commitment:
Doing your part to support Riverbanks’ mission to foster appreciation and concern for all living things.

Responsibilities:

Under general supervision, is responsible for the repair and maintenance of a variety of Riverbanks’ structures, facilities, and equipment.  Assists with maintenance duty assignments such as but not limited to; painting, plumbing, carpentry, HVAC and electrical.  May, based on experience, operate medium to heavy equipment such as a forklift, backhoe, skid steer, snorkel lift, trencher, pickup truck, etc.  Participates in renovating, building, and repairing structures for the containment of zoo animals and for public use.  Assists with maintenance requests, projects and work orders. Runs errands, retrieves parts and supplies from warehouse and delivers to job site. Based on experience or job knowledge growth, may be assigned to perform some work orders independently.  Reports to the Maintenance Supervisor.

Education and Experience:

High school graduate with vocational/technical training in construction technology/engineering and one to two years of experience or any equivalent combination of training and experience which provides the required knowledge, skills and abilities. Must be able to work well alone or with a team on a variety of tasks and priorities. Hands-on experience in any construction trade is a plus. Must possess or be eligible for a valid SC driver's license.  Must be available to work weekends and be available for emergency call in as needed.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

SSA — Food Service, Catering, and Retail

Service Systems Associates (SSA) is the on-site provider of culinary and retail experiences at Riverbanks Zoo and Garden. SSA is an Equal Opportunity Employer and offers a variety of full- and part-time positions at Riverbanks throughout the year. Benefits will vary.

Current Job Openings with SSA (last updated on November 5, 2017)

Catering Operations Banquet and Event Server

Part-time (10–40 hours weekly depending on season)
Posted: 11/5/17

Description: Service Systems Associates at Riverbanks Zoo & Garden is now hiring outgoing, customer service oriented individuals. The Catering Operations Banquet and Event Servers report to the Catering Operations Manager and Assistant Manager. Position is part-time and include day, evening, and weekend hours. Scheduling is flexible within limits.

Compensation: Based on Experience.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Uphold the highest level of customer service.
  • Maintain a friendly and approachable attitude towards guests and staff.
  • Maintain a professional appearance and mannerism.
  • Assist with set-up of tables, linens, chairs, etc, for full service of events.
  • Provide excellent food and beverage service for events.
  • Ability to perform physical activities such as lifting 25–50 lbs, balancing, walking, and handling of delicate materials.
  • Maintain knowledge of policies and procedures.
  • Pay close attention to detail.
  • Maintain sense of urgency when on the service floor.
  • Maintain back of the house, front of the house and side work duties for overall productivity.
  • Maintain positive and professional attitude.
  • Seek council from management when needed.
  • Maintain clear and open communication between all staff members for overall event success.
  • Work well within a team and independently.
  • Must be able to take initiative, Ability to work well under pressure.
  • Follow Health and Safety practices at all times.
  • Complete all other duties as assigned.

Requirements:

  • High school diploma or GED certificate.
  • Customer Service or waiter experience.
Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Concessions Associate

Part-time (Weekends,holidays, and special event evenings required)
Posted: 11/5/17

Description: SSA currently has positions open for concession associates at Riverbanks Zoo. Ideal candidates will enjoy working with the public in a fast paced environment, have some customer service experience, and be committed to detail and maintaining a clean work environment. A positive attitude is mandatory in this position. Previous customer service experience is a plus. Position is seasonal and hours vary according to availability.

Please be sure to set your voicemail prior to applying.

Compensation: $7.50 Starting pay

Apply today! Submit an online job application.

Retail Sales Associates

Part-time (Weekday and Weekend availability.)
Posted: 11/5/17

Description: SSA is currently hiring for seasonal retail sales positions at Riverbanks Zoo. Candidates must be energetic and outgoing with the public, detail oriented and can work in a fast paced environment. Previous customer service or retail sales experience is preferred. Candidates must be available weekdays and weekends as work schedules could vary.

Apply today! Submit an online job application.
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