Sky Irlmeier

Major: Event Management
Company/Organization: Blank Park Zoo
Company/Organization website:
Destination: Des Moines
Timeframe: Summer
Advisor/Coordinator Email:


• Assist the events team and Development Department with tasks related to special events and development • Assist in fundraising, planning and execution of special events such as Zoo Brew, Dreamnight, Zoobilation Gala, and Gators on the Green • Assist with Zoo event promotions, including social media and signage • Create and present an event-focused project throughout the summer • Maintain strong communication with Zoo staff and volunteers • Conduct and facilitate event recap meetings • Additional tasks as assigned by supervisor


During our annual gala, Zoobilation, I helped with the silent auction and helped us raise over around $90,000+ for the Zoo and our conservation/education efforts. Another great accomplishment is that we had an event called Dreamnight, which is for children/families with terminal illnesses or special needs and it turned out super amazing. It was rewarding to give something back to families and invite them to a night at the Zoo.

Learning experience

Greatest lesson I have learned so far is to always be as organized as possible. If you are not, then events tend to not run as smoothly and you have more issues that arise through out the night. Another thing I have learned is that you should always prepare for the unexpected. Even if you think it won't happen, it just might. You have to really be aware of that especially when you work at a Zoo.

What advice would you give?

My advice for future students is to always keep a positive attitude no matter the situation. Another suggestion is to learn time management skills early on because it can only benefit you.

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