Research Intern, Fisher Center ( p/t unpaid)

Chicago, IL
Part Time

Lincoln Park Zoo’s Lester E. Fisher Center for the Study and Conservation of Apes offers opportunities for aspiring primatologists to gain valuable experience in a rigorous scientific environment and be part of a long-term program in behavioral primatology. Encouraging and training the next generation of primatologists is a key aspect of our mission, and since 2004, we have provided professional-development opportunities to more than 200 early-career primatologists from around the world.

Successful applicants will collect observational data on the behavior and space use of primates (chimpanzees and gorillas, or Japanese macaques) living at Lincoln Park Zoo. All data are collected using ZooMonitor software.

In addition to collecting observational data, interns have professional development opportunities including the chance to participate in the Center’s journal club and attend talks as part of the zoo’s LPZooU Seminar Series.

Every intern must commit to working two full days per week (10AM- 4:00PM, Mon-Thurs) for a minimum of 8 months. The distribution of time is flexible to accommodate personal schedules upon request.

We will be accepting 1-3 new interns this winter with a proposed start date of February 2023.


  • Record observational data on primates using an iPad mini and ZooMonitor software (requires passing inter-rater reliability testing).
  • Effectively communicate the data collection process and the aims of the Center to zoo guests.
  • Perform administrative duties, such as data organization, as assigned.


  • Learn how to reliably collect observational data on socially-housed captive primates
  • Increase your familiarity with contemporary behavioral and cognitive research
  • Develop an understanding of the scientific writing and reviewing process
  • Gain knowledge of behavioral ethograms and relevant software and tools
  • Gain experience in a professional business setting



  • Demonstrate understanding and passion for primatology and scientific research;
  • Demonstrate an understanding for the role of zoos in research and conservation efforts;
  • Possess strong organizational and communication skills (written and spoken); 
  • Interact courteously and respectfully with supervisors, fellow employees, volunteers, zoo visitors and the general public.
  • Interact positively and enthusiastically with the public about our research;
  • Work well in a team environment as well as independently;
  • Maintain a positive and flexible approach to daily responsibility;
  • Work within tight timelines and in a busy environment;
  • Read and understand written and oral instructions;
  • Willing to work in a loud and crowded environment;
  • Computer proficiency, including intermediate knowledge of Microsoft Office (Excel and Word);



  • Bachelor’s degree in biology, psychology, anthropology, or related field.
  • 18 years of age or older.
  • Proof of negative TB test in the last 6 months.
  • Proof of COVID-19 vaccine



This is an unpaid part-time internship.  There are no stipends for travel, housing, or other expenses.


Lincoln Park Zoo is committed to an environment that is inclusive and welcoming.  We celebrate the diverse qualities, perspectives, values and experiences of all people.  For Wildlife. For All.





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