assistant curator of aquatic life


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Position Title: Assistant Curator of Aquatic Life
Department: Aquarium


 This position is responsible for assisting the Curator of Aquatic Life in the supervision and coordination of the Aquarium’s daily workload and goals to meet the long-range goals.

Essential Job Functions:

  • Assists in budget preparation and long-range planning
  • Oversees daily maintenance of the aquarium collection and displays
  • Develops, schedules, and directs staff, interns, and volunteer divers as needed under Curator’s supervision
  • Reviews protocols and advises curator to ensure daily operations meet applicable standards
  • Assists with exhibit maintenance and projects as needed, including SCUBA diving and veterinary procedures
  • Develops and seeks out opportunities for staff to engage in professional development
  • Reviews and schedules various exhibit and animal maintenance tasks
  • Negotiates and actively curates positive relationships with vendors and suppliers
  • Fosters positive relationships between the Aquatic Life Dept. and other departments at the Pittsburgh Zoo
  • Fosters positive relationships with industry partners and other zoological institutions
  • Supervises computerized department records
  • Manages employee issues under supervision of Curator
  • Assists Curator in completing annual employee evaluations in a timely manner
  • Maintains animal inventory under supervision of Curator
  • Purchases needed equipment, supplies, and various items
  • Seeks out opportunities for professional self-development
  • Attends senior staff meetings as required or in the absence of the Curator
  • Assists the curator in preparing annual reports
  • Represents the department and zoo in a constructive manner interacting with vendors, colleagues and public
  • Utilizes leadership and organizational skills to foster a positive and supportive work environment

Other Functions:

  • Performs all other duties as assigned and directed.

Performance Factors:

  • Attendance and Dependability: The employee can be depended on to report to work at the scheduled time and is seldom absent from work. The employee can be depended upon to complete work in a timely, accurate, and thorough manner and is conscientious about assignments.
  • Communication and Contact: The employee communicates effectively both verbally and in writing with superiors, colleagues, and individuals inside and outside the Zoological Society.
  • Relationships with Others: The employee works effectively and relates well with others including superiors, colleagues, and individuals inside and outside the Zoological Society. Exhibits a professional manner in dealing with others, and works to maintain constructive working relationships.
  • Provides excellent customer service in the areas of guest relations and park beautification:
    • Answers visitor inquiries or finds someone who can;
    • Is knowledgeable of the location of exhibits, restrooms, concessions, rentals, etc.
    • Disposes of litter and waste throughout the park and zoo facilities.


  • BS degree in Aquatic Biology, related area or equivalent experience is required.
  • Minimum of six years of public aquarium experience is required with at least one year of employee supervisory experience.
  • Extensive knowledge of a variety of aquatic animals and their care requirements in a public aquarium setting.
  • Proficiency with the application of various LSS designs including ozone to enclosures containing aquatic animals.
  • Experience managing dive programs within a public aquarium setting, with the ability to attain SCUBA Diving Instructor Certificate. At least 100 hours of diving experience in a variety of aquatic environments including public aquariums.
  • Leadership and organizational skills conducive to a positive work environment.
  • Proficiency with personal computers and Microsoft software;
  • Valid PA driver’s license required or the ability to obtain one

Physical Requirements:

This position works in an office setting and curatorial areas equally; may require occasional lifting up to 50 lbs.  Must be available to work nights, weekends, and holidays.  Local, national, and international travel is required as needed.


Submit resume and pay rate requirements to:

Zoological Society of Pittsburgh
Human Resources Department
One Wild Place
Pittsburgh, PA  15206