Education Programs Specialist

Smithsonian’S National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute Washington , DC 20319

Posted 2 months ago

Department: Conservation Education and Volunteer Engagement

Function: To design and supervise education programs that meet the missions of Friends of the National Zoo (FONZ) and Smithsonians National Zoo and raise revenue for FONZ.

Status: Exempt

Organizational Relationships:

Reports to: Manager; Lifelong Learning

Supervises: Hourly and contract team members

Job Requirements:

Education: College degree in science, education, biology, museum education, or related field required; advanced degree preferred. Applicant may possess an appropriate combination of courses plus experience which provides knowledge comparable to that normally acquired through the successful completion of a 4 year course of study in education or in an appropriate subject field.

Experience: Minimum of two years experience in formal or nonformal education.

Experience in curriculum development and program implementation required. Experience working with children under 6 and families required. Supervisory experience preferred.


1.Excellent written and oral communication skills.
2.Experience in curriculum and lesson planning.
3.Detail-oriented with excellent organizational skills and the ability to prioritize tasks and meet deadlines.
4.Ability to supervise and mentor team members.
5.Computer proficiency in MS Office and ability to quickly become proficient in web-based systems. Experience working in and with Tessitura is a plus.
6.Customer-service oriented with the ability to interact with team/FONZ members.
7.Works well independently as well as in teams.
8.Experience in marketing and promotion to drive program growth.
9.Valid drivers license.
10. 1st Aid/CPR/AED certified or the ability to be certified prior to employment.

Availability: Some evenings/weekends required.

Duties and Responsibilities
1.Together with Assistant Directors and Team Managers, cultivate a flexible and collaborative department that thrives on teamwork, innovation, and delivering mission-driven education and volunteer programming.
2.Plan and supervise all aspects of a robust portfolio of childrens education programs (e.g. early childhood, homeschool, family programming, etc.) at the Smithsonians National Zoo. Manage educational and logistical aspects of programs including developing class themes and topics, reviewing and providing feedback on teacher lessons, mapping to standards (as appropriate), and ordering supplies.
3.Together with the Lifelong Learning Manager, develop and implement high quality Nature Play-based programming to engage early learners and their families at the Zoo.
4.Recruit, train, manage, and evaluate a year-round corps of childrens class contract teachers.
5.Promote programs and grow participant registration by developing and executing creative marketing strategies.
6.Manage program budgets and ensure that required budget/metrics reporting are submitted on schedule.
7.Manage all aspects of participant registration and communication via online registration system.
8.Together with the Lifelong Learning Manager, develop part-time educator and/or intern work schedules and delegate specific weekly responsibilities related to childrens classes.
9.In conjunction with education team members, execute short-term and long-term strategic plan goals for the department and its programs.

a. As assigned, serve on education team for existing, new, temporary, or renovated exhibits to develop complementary on-site school programs and oversee their facilitation (e.g. Experience Migration exhibit, opening in 2021).

b. Devise and launch high quality, original, and innovative educational programs that integrate best practices of informal and zoo education, communicate key messages, and address the needs of participants.
10. Represent NZP and FONZ internally and externally as an acknowledged leader in environmental and conservation education.
11. Support other department-wide initiatives in education and volunteer programming.
12. Perform other duties as assigned.

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Education Programs Specialist

Smithsonian’S National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute