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Volunteering at Penn Vet


Volunteers play a crucial role in supporting our organization. There are many ways you can contribute your skills and passions.


 Ryan Hospital Volunteer Program

Penn Vet's Ryan Hospital for companion animals is committed to making a positive contribution to the Philadelphia community. One way community outreach and support is accomplished is by offering a competitive volunteer program for interested, driven, and dedicated individuals.

Why Volunteer?

Volunteers are a valuable asset not only to the community-at-large, but also to our team of veterinarians, students and staff. Each volunteer accepted into this prestigious program gains access to the inside world of academic veterinary medicine. Our volunteers are a valued and respected part of the team.

Make a Difference - Volunteer Today

Penn Vet is one of the nation's most respected veterinary schools. Recently designated as one of the nation's first veterinary trauma centers by the American College of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care (ACVECC), Ryan Hospital stands out among its peers with respect to its expertise and level of compassionate care.

Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Ryan Hospital specializes in delivering the most advanced care available to an array of companion animals. We treat more than 30,000 patients annually from dogs and cats to lizards and ferrets, offering more than 20 specialty areas.
Requirements for the Ryan Hospital Volunteer Program

Applications are reviewed in May, September, and December for the summer, fall and winter semesters. 

If you choose to download the Volunteer application, please fill it out and mail it to:

Volunteer Program
Ryan Veterinary Hospital
Penn Vet
3900 Delancey Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104

  • Volunteers are required to be at least 18 years of age and be available to work a minimum of eight (8) hours per week.
  • Volunteers accepted into the program must carry their own health insurance.
  • Duties may include assisting the medical staff with patient needs as well as stocking, cleaning, delivering and retrieving medications and supplies.

Please Note: Students whose aim is to apply to professional school, must complete two semesters of service as a Ryan Hospital volunteer before requesting consideration for recommendation letters.

Penn Vet Working Dog Center

The Penn Vet Working Dog Center serves as a national research and development center for detection dogs.  They are trained to find victims of disasters, detect explosives, conduct search & rescue missions. Some of our dogs are trained as diabetes alert dogs and others are trained for ovarian cancer detection.  These dogs literally save lives.

If you are local to the Philadelphia region, or interested in helping remotely, there are a number of volunteer opportunities available at the Working Dog Center.

Our efforts to breed, raise, and train the next generation of working dogs depends on the hard work, dedication, and creativity of our volunteers. Volunteers are a valuable asset to the Working Dog Community. We are eager for you to be part of our team. It’s fun and rewarding.  More importantly, with your assistance, we are able to provide the energy and direction to advance the research and training projects vital to the future of working dogs.

We appreciate the assistance of volunteers on special events and facility improvement projects as well.  If you have a special talent such as marketing, advertising, or construction that you wish to use towards the mission of the Center, we also welcome your application. Each individual can play a part in helping our working dogs.

Interested in volunteering?

New Bolton Center Foal Sitting Program

Every year, New Bolton Center's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit helps at-risk mares deliver their foals. Typically, this period occurs between February and April. If you are interested in volunteering as a foal sitter for this service, please check back in November for more information on this opportunity.