Corey: I learned about the opportunity to volunteer at Lone Pine while researching where I wanted to study abroad. As an animal behavior major, I hoped to get as much hands-on experience working with animals as possible to prepare for a career as a zookeeper. At the sanctuary I assisted keepers with food preparation, cleaning, and helping visitors. I was able to work with a wide variety of Australian natives including koalas, dingoes, kangaroos, wombats, and echidnas. It was an amazing experience that helped me learn so much about native wildlife as well as the hard work and dedication that goes into being a zookeeper.

As a budding zoologist, the opportunity to learn more about Brisbane’s unique fauna, flora, and people was a key component of Corey’s decision to come to UQ on exchange. Corey used his time after classes to perform work experience at The Australia Zoo. Many tasks involved diet preparation, enclosure cleaning, and assisting customers.

Corey: While similar to the work I did at Lone Pine, I appreciated working at the zoo as I felt it was great practice in customer service. Many of the tasks were focused on helping visitors have the best experience possible which I enjoyed doing. At The Australia Zoo, I was also able to meet my childhood heroes the Irwins on multiple times! It has been amazing to grow up watching the zoo on T.V. and then have the opportunity to work there with the chance of appearing on T.V. myself!