Page 1




u c at i o n

& Wo

r k


r c e


v e lo p m e n t

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo & Cleveland Zoological Society

“Schools alone cannot prepare the children of Cleveland for the complex challenges of a 21st-century global economy. Delivering a quality education in today’s rapidly changing world requires the contribution, commitment and support of the entire community.”

– Eric S. Gordon, CEO, Cleveland Metropolitan School District

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo • Cleveland Zoological Society | 3

Our Region’s Future From scientific innovations in medicine at our region’s world-class hospitals and universities to the important work being done by local innovators, preparing the next generation of science thinkers and innovators is important to the future of Northeast Ohio. Zoos, museums and science centers have an important role to play in helping shape the minds of our region’s students, laying a foundation for scientific inquiry and helping develop tomorrow’s leaders.

Northeast Ohio companies are national and international leaders.

4 | Zo o E d u c a t i o n & Wo r k f o r c e D eve l o p m e n t

STEM Workforce Pipeline Our world is changing rapidly. Innovation, globalization, technology and the pressure to compete economically have reshaped education. Today’s students need a broad and diverse skill set to compete with their peers around the world. Creating a competitive STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) workforce is particularly important to regaining our nation’s competitive advantage.

• According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of jobs requiring STEM skills in the U.S. labor force is growing at a rate of nearly 5%, faster than any other segment. How will we meet the growing demand for highly educated, skilled labor? • The National Science Board reports that many STEM professionals are baby boomers, expected to retire in the next 10-15 years. Who will replace this aging workforce? • The National Education Longitudinal Study found that of students participating in a 12-year analysis, those indicating an interest in science-related careers as eighth graders were almost twice as likely to complete a degree in life sciences and more than three times as likely to complete a degree in physical science or engineering. How do we engage students in positive experiences with science at an early age?

What’s the good news? Zoos, museums and science centers play a unique role by introducing students to inquiry-based science that captures their imaginations, encourages scientific exploration and helps remove barriers to the pursuit of science learning and STEM careers.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo • Cleveland Zoological Society | 5

Living Classroom At Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, science comes alive through a comprehensive study of wildlife. With more than 3,000 animals from all over the world, the Zoo is a living, breathing classroom. These rare and sometimes endangered species are powerful agents for engaging young minds. The Zoo has a long history of providing top-notch education programming for our community. The continuum of learning opportunities in STEM helps build workforce capacity in scientific thinking and critical analysis, and is available to students in Preschool through Graduate School and beyond. The Zoo’s approach also emphasizes collaboration and a sense of personal responsibility, all while encouraging respect for animals and our shared environment.

An inquiry-based approach helps students to: • Make observations • Pose questions • Research and examine facts • Analyze data with the help of tools • Propose answers, explanations and predictions • Communicate solutions

6 | Zo o E d u c a t i o n & Wo r k f o r c e D eve l o p m e n t

Innovate and Build Capacity

The Zoo and Zoo Society are committed to being the region’s foremost providers of informal science learning opportunities. The Zoo offers almost thirty programs that serve students and visitors of all ages.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo • Cleveland Zoological Society | 7


Connections to Africa

Goal: Remove barriers to Zoo education programs by providing free transportation to underserved schools.

Goal: Reinforce STEM concepts K-8 while helping students to understand the complex relationship between humans and wildlife.

Strategy: The Zoo owns and operates two school buses that transport students to the Zoo daily. Extend the reach of this program by offering grant-funded transportation vouchers to eligible schools.

Summer Day Camp Goal: Instill students with an interest in conservation and science in a safe and nurturing learning environment. Strategy: Nine, week-long sessions are available to students age 5-14. Students participate in age appropriate activities, including arts and crafts, conservation challenges, tours and group discussion.

Online Resource Library

Advanced Inquiry Program Goal: Create lasting science teaching capacity within our schools, ultimately reaching thousands of students and introducing inquirybased teaching in the classroom.

Strategy: Using specially designed toolkits, Zoo Educator stations and exhibit interpretives, teachers lead students through a scientific comparison of the habitat needs of people and wildlife in Africa and Ohio.

Strategy: In partnership with Miami University, provide graduate level courses in science (inquiry, sustainability, animal behavior, biomimicry, etc...) for area teachers.


Career Day

Goal: Teach personal responsibility, teamwork, a sense of ethics and communication skills to area teenagers (age 13-17), helping prepare them for college and entrance into the workforce. Strategy: Provide leadership training to teenagers actively engaged in science learning, project development and conservation activities.

Professor Wylde’s Animal Show

Goal: Connect Zoo visitors (students, teachers and families) with interactive online Zoo resources that enable the exchange of ideas and knowledge.

Goal: Connect students with wildlife, while reinforcing that everyone can make a difference when it comes to wildlife and wild places.

Strategy: Provide one easy-to-access website with inquiry-based science lesson plans that address State of Ohio Academic Content Standards, a digital database of Zoo animal photos and videos and supplemental materials to be used with the Zoo’s distance learning program.

Strategy: Provide an entertaining and educational theatrical program, which includes live, trained animals, to empower the audience to take conservation action.

Goal: Expose teenagers to a variety of Zoo careers rooted in science. Strategy: Offer a series of career day events that provide area teens with the opportunity to interact with Zoo professionals and learn about the work going on “behindthe-scenes” at the Zoo.

8 | Zo o E d u c a t i o n & Wo r k f o r c e D eve l o p m e n t

Partners for Workforce Development Join the Cleveland Zoological Society and Cleveland Metroparks Zoo as we strive to improve Zoo access and experiences for underserved students and teachers throughout our region. Help us remove barriers to education by providing transportation vouchers and a blended scholarship program for area classrooms and students with an interest in STEM learning.

Field Trip Program Participants Transportation for Underserved Audiences (Existing ZooBus & Bus Vouchers)

Scholarships for Underserved Children













Enhancing the Zoo and Zoo Society’s public/private partnership ensures a sustainable future for Zoo Science Education programs — and a bright outlook for workforce development in this region.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo • Cleveland Zoological Society | 9

Why Zoos Matter With 180 million annual visitors nationwide, zoos across the country reach a vast audience and provide far more than just exposure to animals. Leading zoos raise awareness, promote action and educate students of all ages and walks of life. Beloved by children and adults for 130 years, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo is a nationally recognized conservation park. This reputation is a result of the thriving public/private partnership enjoyed by Cleveland Metroparks Zoo and the Cleveland Zoological Society. Each year, the Zoo / Zoo Society: • • • •

Attracts 1.3 million visitors Delivers $100 million in economic impact Serves 45,000 households (the largest membership base in Northeast Ohio) Educates 80,000 - 100,000 students, including 25,000 of our region’s underserved children

Contact Us Zoo Education & Workforce Development Committee Dennis Burnside, Mohr Partners, Co-Chair Mike Vaughn, The Lubrizol Corporation, Co-Chair Virginia D. Benjamin, Calfee Halter & Griswold LLP Michael A. Cogan, Northern Trust Bank Randolph E. Corbin, Charter One Bank James Even, Eaton Corporation Gretchen Farrell, Lincoln Electric Thomas Fistek, Parker Hannifin Corporation Ned Hill, PhD, Cleveland State University James W. McGill, Eaton Corporation Al Mistysyn, The Sherwin-Williams Company Greg Mulach Shelly Peet, Nordson Corporation Al Pytel, Key Bank Rob Rogers, Findley Davies Vicki Searles, Cleveland Metroparks Zoo

Steve H. Taylor Director Cleveland Metroparks Zoo (216) 635.3331

Elizabeth T. Fowler Executive Director Cleveland Zoological Society (216) 635.3342

We create compelling experiences that connect people with wildlife and inspire personal responsibility for conserving the natural world.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo Cleveland Zoological Society Cleveland, OH 44109 (216) 661.6500 /

Zoo Education and Workforce Development  

Zoos, museums and science centers have an important role to play in helping shape the minds of our region's students, laying a foundation fo...