JOB EXPERIENCE PROGRAM
Our 2023 session is underway! Applications for the next session will be available soon for hosts and visitors.
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. All IZE members (including Individual level, Associate level, and staff employed full-time or part-time 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.
For the 2024 JEP season, applications for Hosts will be made available in late April with a May 31st deadline. Hosts may be contacted in June to discuss their application. Hosts will be notified in late June of their application decision.
Visitor applications will open in early July and will be due in mid August. Visitors may be contacted in late August to discuss their application. Visitors will be notified at the end of August of their application decision.
Matchmaking will occur in late August & early September with Hosts & Visitors being notified of their matches by mid-September. At that point, Hosts & Visitors can begin to create travel arrangements.
Look for announcements in IZE emails and on our social media channels.
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.