Title: Associate Marine Mammal Trainer
Education: Bachelor’s in history and government, Associate’s of science in zookeeping technology
Bio: Hi my name is Emily, and I’m an associate marine mammal trainer here at CMA. My background was originally in zookeeping. After getting my bachelor’s degree in history, I went back to school for an associates degree in zookeeping technology. While studying for that degree, I started volunteering in the elephant barn at the local zoo and eventually got hired first as a seasonal animal keeper, then as a relief keeper for all the animal areas in the zoo. I worked primarily with big cats, bears, primates, small mammals, and some birds and reptiles. I then accepted a position as an elephant keeper at another facility where I helped care for one bull elephant and two females in a mostly free contact handling system. Although I liked the animals very much, I found that the free contact handling system was not for me, and decided to try for an internship with marine mammals at CMA, where one of my fellow elephant keepers had interned and volunteered. I moved out to Florida to do my internship, continued as a volunteer afterwards, and recently got hired on as staff working with these amazing animals!