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Dolphin Quest Marine Scholar

Start Your Career Early

Dolphin Quest Hawaii’s Marine Scholar Program is designed to inspire students to pursue a career within the marine mammal or conservation field and prepare them to succeed in the professional world! Participants will shadow our staff and will learn all aspects of daily operations at a dolphin interaction facility. Selected Marine Scholars will commit to at least two 4-hour shifts per month during the school year (Oct– May). Space within this program is limited.

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Dolphin Quest Marine Scholar Program Description


This opportunity is available to local resident students attending high school, ages 14-18.

The candidate must meet the following criteria:

  • A strong willingness to learn and a positive attitude towards daily operations
  • Good academic record
  • An interest in pursuing a position within the marine mammal or related field
  • The ability to contribute to a team atmosphere
  • Reliable transportation to and from the DQ facility
  • Obtain written permission from parent or guardian
  • Obtain one letter of recommendation
  • Able to attend orientation and fulfill program time commitments
  • Comfortable in deep water and being outdoors for long periods of time


Dolphin Quest’s Marine Scholar program is a hands-on learning experience, where participants work alongside the Dolphin Quest Hawaii Crew. Marine Scholars spend time learning all aspects of the Dolphin Quest environment that may include, but is not limited to, items listed below.

  • Learning and applying Dolphin Quest values* (see below)
  • Animal identification
  • Observing dolphin behavior, interactions and programs
  • Introduction to basic training theory
  • Nutrition preparation
  • Note taking
  • Guest services interaction
  • Fish room cleanup
  • Preparing animal enrichment
  • Maintaining facility and animal environments
  • Providing support to the training team
  • Shadowing other departments

The duties of the individual scholar will vary based on the effort put forth and their individual learning curve. They will also learn how to participate and succeed in a professional environment. Scholars may be invited to take part in professional development organized by the leadership team.

*Dolphin Quest places a high priority on actualizing our core values:

  • Character and integrity
  • Open communication
  • Outside-the-box thinking and creativity
  • Loyalty and dedication
  • Personal and professional growth
  • Lots of fun and enjoyment
  • Animal health and well-being
  • Conservation and global stewardship
  • Excellence and professionalism
  • Sensational service


The program fee for those accepted into the program is $398 and non-refundable. Full and partial grants are available to students by reaching out to Allyson at [email protected] and will be selected upon review.


  • Download the application in PDF format
  • Applications are accepted from May 1 – September 1. 
  • Send completed applications or additional program/grant inquiries to Allyson Boss at [email protected].
    •  *Please download file, rename the file using your full name and save to your computer before sending.
  • Correspondence regarding this program is expected to take place between the student and DQ Coordinator. Parents are encouraged to mentor their children in this role and can be copied on correspondence. 
  • Please note that previous participation in the program does not guarantee space in subsequent year’s program due to the limited space. Students must reapply each year.
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