Conservation Science Scholars Program
Annual Requirements


All Scholars Students will be required to complete 120 hours of service annually in addition to an individualized portfolio. The makeup of these hours varies slightly between a student's first year of participation and subsequent years (see details below). 

Additional hours to meet the 120 hour requirement can be earned through volunteer interpretation, assistance with special events on our offsite, or participation in additional workshops throughout the year. 

Portfolio
Each student is expected to spend at least 10 hours creating an individualized portfolio that summarizes and illustrates experiences over the course of the year, information and skills learned and examples of participation, growth and development by way of art, photos, writing samples, etc.

Year One
During the first year of participation in the Scholars Program, teens are expected to complete 120 hours of service through the following:

Workshops** (~2-3 hours each)

  • 5 Foundation Courses
  • 2 Science 
  • 1 Conservation Education 
  • 1 Team Building
  • 1 College or Career Readiness
  • 1 Behind the Scenes Tour


Volunteer Service

  • At least 60 hours of volunteer interpretation at Brookfield Zoo or sponsored offsite activities
  • At least 2 special events at Brookfield Zoo or sponsored offsite activities (examples include craft experiences for youth for Boo at the Zoo, dressing up as a costume character for Holiday Magic, etc.)


Year Two and Beyond

All teens who successfully meet the program requirements from first year and who are still eligible for participation in the program are encouraged to continue for a second, third or fourth year without having to reapply. Program requirements for the second year require 120 hours of service through:

Workshops** (~2-3 hours each)

  • 5 Science 
  • 2 College
  • 2 Career Readiness
  • 1 Behind the Scenes Tour


Volunteer Service

  • At least 30 hours of volunteer interpretation at Brookfield Zoo or sponsored offsite activities
  • At least 2 special events at Brookfield Zoo or sponsored offsite activties (examples include craft experiences for youth for Boo at the Zoo, dressing up as a costume character for Holiday Magic, etc.)

 

Optional Projects
Teens who are interested in engaging in a hands-on way while building leadership skills can choose to create and execute projects individually or in small groups. These can take the form of research projects at the Zoo in areas such as conservation science and animal behavior or through community action projects in students' neighborhoods. All hours spent on creating and participating in such projects will count towards a student's hour requirement.

**Workshops will be held at Brookfield Zoo as well as various partner organizations within the Chicago area. Locations will be selected based off of participants' home addresses to ease in transportation difficulties.