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Education Specialist

Tulsa Zoo
Tulsa, United States Posted: June 04, 2024

Safety-Sensitive: This is a safety-sensitive position.  Candidates, regardless of whether they are a medical marijuana licensee, must receive a negative result on a 10-panel, pre-placement drug screening to include THC, prior to beginning work.

  • Tulsa Zoo Management, Inc. (TZMI) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with the mission of “Connecting, Caring, Advocating for Wildlife, People, and Wild Places.”
  • A dynamic group of passionate individuals brings the zoo to life each day, 365 days per year, caring for animals, greeting guests, educating the public and managing the facilities.
  •   Each member of the team is integral to the success of the zoo as a key asset in the City of Tulsa and the Northeast Oklahoma region, delivering recreational opportunities, providing unplugged family time and conserving animal species for future generations.
Position Summary:
  • The Education Specialist supports the Education department through all aspects of interpretive, formal and informal programming including daily husbandry of the education ambassador animals, developing and teaching camps, classes, on-grounds interpretive programs, school and off-site programs and managing the programs and daily operations of the Tulsa Zoo Nature Exchange (NEX).
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
  • Other duties may be assigned in keeping with the mission of Tulsa Zoo Management, Inc. (TZMI).
  • Develops and teaches assigned formal and informal education programs at the Tulsa Zoo including school programs, library programs, off-site programming, teacher professional development, etc.
  • Completes animal husbandry routines, including enrichment/training, administering medications, and record-keeping for ambassador animal collection.
  • Maintains all supplies and records associated with the animal collection.
  • Assists with daily operation of the NEX, including opening and closing procedures, interacting with traders, managing inventory, and managing the facility.
  • Assists with maintaining the NEX trader database and recommends upgrades and maintenance as needed.
  • Adjusts work schedule as needed to accommodate any programming times that are outside the typical assigned work schedule.
  • Ensures participants’ safety through practicing professional classroom and zoo-visit management, enforcing all policies, and maintaining order at all times.
  • Assists with the coordination and supervision of volunteers and seasonal, part-time, and contract staff.
  • Oversees the care and use of the Education department technology and all formal programming equipment, including the care and upkeep of the outreach van.
  • Handles animals in the education ambassador animal collection in both public and non-public situations.
  • Oversees the HDC classrooms and their storage areas by maintaining inventory and ensuring orderliness, cleanliness, and safety.
  • Provides assistance with the non-living collections as needed.
  • Works cooperatively with other TZMI departments.
  • Develops and maintains professional relationships with personnel from outside organizations and facilities.
  • Stays current with information and skills pertaining to education, the environment, animals, and any other field pertinent to this position.
  • Maintains necessary certifications as required.
  • Maintains necessary testing/vaccinations as required (TB, rabies, etc.).
  • Recognizes signs of pest infestation in animal areas and combat pests/nuisance wildlife as directed.
  • Maintains area compliance with all local, state, federal and international regulations and standards are met (USDA, AZA, etc.)
  • Responds to emergency calls after normal operating hours.
Supervisory Responsibilities:    
  • This position currently has no supervisory responsibilities.
  • To perform the job successfully, an individual should demonstrate the following competencies as they relate to TZMI core values:
  • We are enthusiastically committed to be part of the Tulsa Zoo community.
  • We will all work together as one Zoo Team to support the Zoo’s mission.
  • We will value and appreciate everyone and create a safe, understanding, and welcoming environment for all.
  • We will all be accountable for achieving excellence.
  • We will earn the trust of one another, acting honestly and treating each other with respect.
  • To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.
  • The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.
  • Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Education and/or Experience
  • Bachelor’s degree in education, biology, zoology, environmental science, or a related field from college or university
  • One to three years related experience working in an interpretive education setting
  • Equivalent combination of education and experience is acceptable
Language Skills
  • Ability to read and interpret documents such as safety rules, operating and maintenance instructions and procedure manuals
  • Ability to write routine reports and correspondence
  • Ability to speak effectively before groups of customers, employees of TZMI and the general public.
Mathematical Skills
  • Ability to add, subtract, multiply and divide using whole numbers, common fractions and decimals.
  • Ability to perform these operations using units of American money.
Computer Skills
  • Microsoft Office – including Word, Excel, PowerPoint (or Prezi)
  • Past Perfect (or similar museum database system)
  • Internet Browser(s)- Explorer, Chrome, Safari, etc.
  • Other Skills, Abilities or Qualifications
  • Must possess a valid driver’s license and be insurable on TZMI’s insurance carrier
  • Ability to work a flexible schedule including evenings, weekends and holidays
  • Must have a valid drivers’ license and be insurable by the insurance carrier
  • Familiarity with a variety of teaching methods and knowledge of age-appropriate cognitive and physical abilities required
  • Experience in interpretive education, including program development and implementation, preferred
  • Working knowledge of the natural world preferred
Research skills are required
  • Experience working with small invertebrates, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals in public and non-public situations preferred
  • Ability to communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing
  • Ability to work with both adult and teen volunteers
  • Proficient in public speaking and creative thinking
  • Capable of self-motivating and working without direct supervision
Physical Demands:  
  • The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.
  • Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
  • This position involves substantial standing; substantial walking; moderate sitting; substantial reaching with hands and arms; minimal climbing or balancing; substantial stooping, kneeling, crouching or crawling; substantial talking or hearing; moderate lifting up to 50 pounds
Work Environment:
  • The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job.
  • Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
  • This work environment involves moderate work in outdoor weather conditions; moderate work with loud noise level.

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