The Lomas Barbudal Monkey Project accepts up to 6 volunteer field assistants per year to work as part of our research program on social learning in wild capuchin monkeys. Because the training process requires 3-6 months, we only accept applicants who are willing to work for a minimum of one year.

If grant support is available, field volunteers are typically provided with room and board and (sometimes) a very small stipend that should be sufficient to cover their living expenses. Volunteers are required to provide their own health insurance and pay for their necessary vaccinations.

Fluency in English and basic Spanish skills are prerequisites for the job; prior field experience and/or work with primates are desirable but not absolutely required.

Transportation costs to the field site from the volunteer’s home country up to a certain maximum allowable amount may be reimbursed following the successful completion of the one year minimum appointment (again, depending on the level of grant support we currently have).

There is no specific application deadline (it is a rolling deadline), and hence there is no specific notification date of the success of the application. When volunteer slots become available, they are filled with the top candidates in the current applicant pool. Applicants should feel free to contact the project with inquiries regarding the probability of obtaining a position, as the time comes when they need to make decisions about other opportunities.

Prior to applying for a volunteer position, we request that potential applicants read the detailed guide – [click here] describing the working and living conditions at the field site, available on this site.

If these conditions are acceptable, then the applicant should assemble an application packet including the materials described in this pdf: Instructions for assembly of application packet [click here to read text in file “JobApplicationInstUCLA”]

How to apply for a position as a field assistant on the Lomas Barbudal Monkey Project:
An application packet should contain the following materials:

  • Letter of interest, explaining career goals and suitability for this project, plus a time frame during which the applicant is available to work
  • CV/resume detailing relevant experience
  • Transcript of college courses taken (unofficial copy OK) (summary of coursework and grades, for institutions outside the US)
  • Contact information (including email addresses) for 3 or more people who would be willing to write letters of support: We prefer that this list includes:
    one academic reference in a relevant field (e.g. primate behavior, animal behavior), one person who has supervised the applicant’s research or work in the past; one person who has lived with the applicant in a cooperative living situation, preferably in the field.