Costa Rica Wildlife Rescue Internship Online

Support wildlife rescue, rehabilitation, and release in the Rainforest…

from anywhere on Earth

Loop Abroad is proud to offer this remote internship to support the outstanding rescue, rehabilitation, and release work of the Toucan Rescue Ranch in the rainforest of Costa Rica.

Even if you’re stuck at home, you can be learning from this outstanding team of veterinarians and husbandry workers who care for confiscated, sick, and injured animals brought to the Ranch from government agencies. The Toucan Rescue Ranch has special expertise in toucan, owl, and sloth rehabilitation. As a multi-species rescue facility, they care for a wide variety of wildlife such as spider monkeys, wild cats, weasels, and an otter!

Your tuition sponsors the staff, medicine, and supplies needed during this time that the the Ranch is closed to visitors and has lost more than 50% of its operating income.

Dr Janet Sandi and Dr Ana Villada, your instructors

During this internship, you’ll be joining the rescue team by video call. You’ll learn about important past cases from Dr. Janet Sandi and Dr. Ana Villada and observe their wildlife clinic live!

“Sharing our clinical experiences through this internships gives us hope and energy to keep going. Remember that NOTHING is what you expect when working with wildlife!” –-Dr. Janet Sandi, Animal Care Coordinator

Dr. Sandi is the Animal Care Coordinator and has a broad exotics background including work at a sloth sanctuary, the Dallas aquarium, and private consulting with the zoo in San Jose, Costa Rica. Dr. Villada also has an international background. She graduated as a veterinarian in Mexico, studied Conservation Medicine in Australia, and is the vet supervisor of a diverse team of interns and vet medicine professionals.

Throughout the internship, your veterinarian instructors will be covering these special veterinary topics:

  • Release case histories of sloths, owls, parrots, foxes, and tamanduas
  • Training each species to be ready for life in the wild
  • Evaluating animals for release, with a focus on sloths and the Saving Sloths Together program
  • Treating sloth electrocution cases, an unfortunately common occurrence because of power lines built across the rainforest canopy
  • Orthopedic surgery on wildlife with example cases
  • Hand raising techniques for baby sloths and parrots as taught by the Ranch Founder Leslie Howle
  • Enrichment and husbandry of rainforest wildlife

Each week, there will be four video calls. On Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, you’ll be learning from the veterinarians about special veterinary topics in preparation for the weekend.

On Saturdays, you’ll observe the husbandry team live to learn how they provide the right diets, enclosures, and enrichment to keep animals healthy and prepare them for release. Finally, on Sundays, you’ll observe live in the veterinary clinic while veterinarians explain each case.

In addition to observing the clinic, you’ll be expected to contribute about 13 hours of time on independent projects assigned to students including research and creative tasks to support the Ranch’s work.

Students who complete this internship will earn a Certificate in Costa Rican Rainforest Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation from Loop Abroad.

Students may apply from anywhere in the world. You must be fluent in English and have internet fast enough for video call (minimum 1Mbps) and a computer with video playback, microphone, and sound. No experience with zoos or veterinary medicine is required.

Toucan Rescue Ranch

The Toucan Rescue Ranch is internationally recognized for its success in wildlife rehabilitation and release. Founded in 2004, they proved their expertise as the only facility in Costa Rica to have success with parent raised captive bred emerald toucanets and keel-billed toucans. Recognizing their accomplishments, the Costa Rican government began sending more confiscated and injured animals of a whole variety for rehabilitation. Toucan Rescue Ranch now has a 16-acre headquarters and 25-acre Release Site for their wildlife rehabilitation work.

The Toucan Rescue Ranch has cared for hundreds of animals over 170 different species of Costa Rican wildlife and is currently home to the following species:

  • Emerald toucanet
  • Great green macaw
  • Collared aracari
  • Spectacled owl
  • Hoffman’s two-toed sloth
  • Brown-throated three-toed sloth
  • Black-handed spider monkey
  • Neotropical river otter
  • Oncilla
  • Deby’s wooly opossum
  • Mexican hairy dwarf porcupine
  • Ocelot
  • Kinkajou
  • Bat falcon

Internship Dates And Deadlines

SessionDatesMeeting timesEnrollment Deadline
Summer 2021Tue June 8 to Sun July 25Tue and Wed 7-9pm ET + Sat and Sun 1-230pm ETJune 6

Each session has a minimum of 8 students and is limited to a maximum of 20 students so all Wildlife Rescue Interns are able to ask questions and get one-on-one mentorship. Enrollment is rolling and this offering will close as soon as it fills.

Internship Tuition

Since COVID-19 has disrupted many students’ travel and educational plans, we are heavily discounting tuition to help pre-veterinary students meet their goals.

6-week internship: $2,000 $1495

There are no additional readings, technology subscriptions, or course materials you have to purchase to participate in this internship.

The Gilman Scholarship could fund $5000 of your tuition. See the official website and read about Loop Abroad students who have received this scholarship. If you are a US citizen receiving a Pell Grant and currently enrolled in college or university, we encourage you to apply for this scholarship. Applications are open now for scholarships for programs starting between May 1, 2021 and April 30, 2022. The deadline is Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 11:59pm Pacific Time (PT).

Enroll Now

Enroll Now

Scholarships

 

There are lots of ways to help fund your online and travel programs with Loop Abroad, and we are here to help!

Scholarships are a terrific way to cover some or all of your tuition for a Loop Abroad program. When you look for scholarships for pre-vet programs, you need to look at all your options!

Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship:

The Gilman Scholarship could fund $5000 of your tuition and the next deadline is March 9 at 11:59 pm Pacific Time! 

The Gilman Scholarship was designed to help students of limited financial means have the opportunity to study abroad – online or in-person. Nearly a third of applicants are awarded the scholarship! This is a great opportunity to help cover your tuition.

Students can receive up to $5,000 for travel or virtual programs. The scholarship can be applied to any of our online programs, to our semester programs, or one of our 2-week programs.

Along with their application, students must submit two essays, the Statement of Purpose Essay, and the Community Impact Essay. Students must also upload their transcripts (unofficial or official). For more information on the application guidelines, please click here.

See the official website and read about Loop Abroad students who have received this scholarship. If you are a US citizen receiving a Pell Grant and currently enrolled in college or university, we encourage you to apply for this scholarship. The March 2023 Deadline application will open in mid-January 2023 for applicants whose in-person programs or internships start between May 1, 2023 to April 30, 2024. This cycle encompasses Summer 2023, Fall 2023, Academic Year 2023-2024, and Spring 2024 programs or internships. The application deadline is Thursday, March 9, 2023 at 11:59pm Pacific Time, and the advisor certification deadline is Thursday, March 16, 2023.

Loop Abroad Dr. Erica Ward Scholarship

Focused elephant imageLoop Abroad is offering one FULL TUITION scholarship to cover one travel program (up to 2 weeks) of your choice.  Applications are now open and are due MARCH 1st. We’re proud to add this to the list of scholarships for pre-vet programs.

Who can apply: This scholarship is open to all students age 18 and over. You do not have to be a US Citizen. You do not have to be currently in school. 

You do not have to complete an application to Loop Abroad in order to be selected for the scholarship. The scholarship winner must be able to complete the Loop Abroad enrollment paperwork, requiring a doctor’s signature, and must meet all safety requirements of program enrollment.

Note: if you have already applied to Loop Abroad and been accepted, you can still apply for this scholarship. If you have made any payments toward tuition and later receive the scholarship, your payments will be refunded.

Criteria for selecting the scholarship recipient: 

We will consider financial need, commitment to conservation and/or animal science, academic performance, and ability to be a positive team member as factors in our decision. We are not looking for the applicant with the highest grades or the most animal hours. We are not looking for the applicant with the saddest story. We are looking for a student who embodies Loop Abroad’s values of teamwork, commitment to a cause, and hard work, and for a student who would not be able to otherwise afford Loop Abroad tuition (whether because of household income or recent change in circumstances).

Scholarship details:

This scholarship covers tuition to one Loop Abroad program with a duration of 1 to 2 weeks in the summer of 2023. It is not transferable to other individuals or future semesters. It does not include airfare, travel or medical insurance, passport, college credit fees (optional), visa (if required), or any optional incidentals during your program. Please understand that a full tuition scholarship does not make travel completely free: passport, airfare, and other expenses depend on the program location.

Once a scholarship winner is chosen, the winner will need to complete full application paperwork for Loop Abroad. The winner must then also complete the enrollment paperwork, which includes waiver forms and a medical form signed by a doctor indicating that you are able to safely participate in a travel program.

The scholarship winner agrees that Loop Abroad may publicize the awarding of the scholarship, including the recipient’s information such as name and current university. The scholarship winner will be subject to all regular rules of participating in a Loop Abroad program.

How to apply:
To apply, you must complete the following three steps:

  1. Apply for the Loop Abroad Dr. Erica Ward Scholarship here. The application requires a copy of your proof of household income (such as last year’s tax return).
  2. Follow @LoopAbroad on Instagram (instagram.com/loopabroad) and make an Instagram post about the program you’re hoping to join, tagging @loopabroad and #loopabroad in the post. You do not need to mention that you have applied for a scholarship.

Dr. Erica Ward holding a black dog and an elephant at the background and an elephant dogWhy is it called the Erica Ward Scholarship? Dr. Erica Ward is our Academic Director. We believe that she embodies the values we are seeking in our scholarship applicants: she is passionate, dedicated, hard-working, and driven to make the world a better place. Dr. Ward consistently strives to find ways that Loop Abroad can support projects in need and help its students and alumni have fulfilling academic opportunities. We have decided to name this scholarship after her to honor her continued commitment to her values and purpose. (PS – She isn’t dead. Please don’t write your essay about honoring her legacy. She is very much alive and still working here. If you are a finalist for the scholarship, she will read your essay.)

Details:
The scholarship will be credited toward tuition for the winning student toward the Loop Abroad program of their choice.

The scholarship is non-transferable. If the student cannot attend, the scholarship will be void – it is not a cash prize and cannot be paid as such. Applicants must be over the age of 18. Citizens and residents of any country may apply.

ALL PARTICIPANTS IN LOOP ABROAD TRAVEL PROGRAMS MUST BE VACCINATED AGAINST COVID-19. All participants are subject to other COVID requirements, such as providing a negative COVID test taken within the 2 days prior to travel. If you are unable to meet these requirements, you may use your scholarship toward a Loop Abroad online program of your choice within the 2023 calendar year.

Loop Abroad reserves the right not to grant a travel scholarship for the 2023 year if there are no qualified applicants who have applied by the deadline.

 

The Gilman-McCain Scholarship:

Young lady holding a blue parrotThe Gilman-McCain Scholarship is a congressionally funded initiative of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State and named after the late senator John S. McCain from Arizona.

This scholarship is open to US citizen undergraduate students who are child dependents of active duty service members and receive any type of Title IV federal financial aid. Students can receive awards of up to $5,000 for 2+ weeks of international travel or online programs. The scholarship can be applied to any of our online programs,  semester programs, or 2-week travel programs.

The deadline for this scholarship is March 9, 2023.

Freeman-Asia Scholarships:

Smiling woman hanging on a ropeThe Freeman Awards for Study in Asia (Freeman-ASIA) provides scholarships for U.S. undergraduate students with demonstrated financial need to study abroad in East or Southeast Asia. This scholarship is open to both US citizens and permanent residents who are undergraduate students at a two-year or four-year college or university.

Recipients can receive up to $3,000 in awards for summer programs. This scholarship can be applied to our Thailand programs for 2+ weeks.

In order to apply, students must fill out an online application. Read the scholarship instructions here and the eligibility requirements here.

All student applications for Academic Year 2023-2024, including the following terms: Summer 2023, Fall 2023, Academic Year 2023-2024, Spring 2024, and Calendar Year 2024, are expected to open in February 2023.

The Fund for Education Abroad:

Loop Abroad scholarships student checking heartbeat of the tigerThe Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) invests in promising students with financial needs who wish to study abroad. Potential applicants who meet our eligibility requirements may participate in any international education program that meets their academic objectives.

This scholarship is open to US citizens or permanent residents currently enrolled as an undergraduate at a college or university in the US. Scholarships range from $1,250 – $10,000.

Along with their application, students must submit a financial aid form (filled out by the financial aid office at their school), one recommendation letter, and a copy of their unofficial transcript.

Applications for Spring 2023 (programs from January- May) are due by September 15, 2022 at 12pm (noon) EST. Students may review the scholarship and application instructions here.

Scholarships of note that you can apply for through the Fund for Education Abroad include:

  • The Hiliary Echo Douglas Memorial Scholarship – for students studying abroad in Southeast Asia
  • Boston Area Study Abroad Association Scholarship – for students with schools in Massachusetts, Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, or Connecticut.
  • Rainbow Scholarship – For LGBTQI students that participate in a high-quality, rigorous education abroad program.
  • Malú Alvarez Global Access Scholarship- Five scholarships for semester-long programs to be awarded for study in any country.
  • NAFSA Tamara H. Bryant Memorial Scholarship- These funds are awarded to African-American undergraduate students in the United States who hope to study abroad.
  • Gateway International Group Education Abroad Scholarship- Scholarship awarded to those who are first-generation college students, or those whose home or college of study is in Kentucky.

Smiling woman holding small wildcat

NAFSA scholarships

NAFSA is the world’s largest nonprofit association dedicated to international education and they have a long list of scholarship databases (including scholarships for pre-vet programs) that might help make your program possible!

SeniorCare.com Aging Matters Scholarship

SeniorCare.com continues to bring more awareness to the key issues we face as an aging population. For the 8th consecutive year, we will be awarding an annual college scholarship to an individual that best demonstrates to us why “Aging Matters” to them. A $1500 scholarship will be given annually to a selected college student that currently cares for an aging loved one, works within the senior community, or intends to pursue a career that will have an impact on the elder population. Any existing student (or incoming freshman), in good academic standing, at a 2 or 4-year accredited college can apply for this scholarship. The recipient will demonstrate a unique and admirable understanding and desire to show us that “Aging Matters” to them.

All applicants can get more information and apply online here. Applications are due May 15, 2023.

"From handling wombats and pygmy possums to learning how to suture and perform necropsies, this was a once in a lifetime experience and I am so grateful for my time down under."

Alexandra H., Australia Veterinary Service 2018

University of California Davis