Apr 12

Getting To Know SeaWorld Orlando Aquarist Jennifer Hite

by Staff

SeaWorld takes pride in the fact that each and every day our team members come to work, they make a difference -- Jennifer Hite is no exception. Working for SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment for more than six years has inspired Jennifer to dedicate her career and personal time to animals. She has been volunteering once a week, for the past two years, at Genesis Zoological and Wildlife Rescue in Auburndale, Fla.

How has working at SeaWorld inspired you?
Being an Aquarist, I enjoy helping people get up close and personal with animals that they normally wouldn't come anywhere near, such as reptiles and stingrays. Some of these animals have mysterious reputations because people don't understand them, but once they learn about them, they are fascinated. This carries over into my volunteer work at Genesis Zoological and Wildlife Rescue; I want to help create a sense of comfort for these animals, so that more people will help with rescue and rehabilitation efforts.

What’s most rewarding about volunteering?
The whole point of the sanctuary at Genesis, and why I volunteer there, is to provide a place for animals that have no home. A coyote was orphaned at a young age, and our vet determined that she wouldn't survive if she was released. I’ve gotten to see her grow, and helped build a large enough habitat for her to move into once she was full grown. Now she has a beautiful place right next to our wolf, and they actually play with each other through the fence.

How does someone get involved with Genesis?
Volunteers must be at least 18 years old and ready to work with animals. There are many different jobs available, so if interested, call (863) 965-8706 or visit their website.