IZE is thrilled to announce the return of our Job Experience Program (JEP)!   


JEP is a unique professional development experience that allows members to learn directly from each other at locations around the world.  JEP creates opportunities for us to gain insights from other educators and exchange best practices in order to spark innovation in conservation education.   


IZE facilitates the matches between interested Visitors and willing Host institutions. Hosts provide the opportunity for Visitors to shadow their education staff and participate in education programming.  Visitors pay their own expenses to participate in the program.  


IZE Institutional Members may volunteer to serve as a JEP Host site.  IZE Individual Members and staff employed at Institutional Members are eligible to apply as Visitors for the JEP. A Host institution may send an employee to another Host site during the same year. The Visitor’s home institution need not also serve as a Host site.  


The list of Hosts varies each year. Typically there are opportunities to travel to most of the IZE regions.  


The JEP travel season runs from September through May. Exceptions for travel outside of that period may be made. Applications for Hosts are made available in October for the following year. Applications for Visitors are made available in January. Matchmaking occurs in February, with Hosts and Visitors notified in March. This schedule allows at least six months for travel arrangements and other preparations to be made.  

Look for announcements in IZE emails and on our social media channels.   

See the IZE JEP Host Guideline and FAQs_2023 and the IZEA JEP Terms & Conditions_2023 for more details about expectations and requirements.  

For questions, please contact us at or contact Dave Johnston, IZE Regional Representative for North America and JEP Champion, at djohnston@wcs.og. 


Individual staff members benefit from gaining practical experience at another IZE member facility.  Their home institutions benefit from the shared learning brought back by the participating staff.  Host institutions benefit from the ability to share their best practices with colleagues from another facility.   

Hosts say they especially appreciate:  

The ability to talk candidly and information share with someone from an aligned and leading zoo was fantastic. Not only did [our visitor] gain experience here but we benefited from having her fresh eyes on our campaigns and operations. It was encouraging to hear that we have a lot of similarities as well as learning how we are approaching some issues differently.” 

“The participant could interact with a number of the education departments and was personable and easy to engage with. Their presentation of [the organization’s] programmes and the thinking behind them was useful as well as their final comments on our programmes.” 

Examples of what Visitors say is the most valuable experience:  

Meeting with the host and learning about all the different conservation programs they are involved in with their education department.”  

“Following the primary school education tour, experiencing the operation and the teaching method which is very useful for me.”  

“Different countries, same issues. We all have very similar conservation issues and the way we address them through education can be shared and adapted to use anywhere!”





To read about JEP experiences in 2019, click here.

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