This interdisciplinary concentration prepares students in a liberal arts tradition for entry level positions leading to leadership positions in zoos and conservation organizations. Coursework in this concentration is strongly interdisciplinary, drawing upon biology, psychology, and environmental science classes. Students develop technical and quantitative skills including laboratory and field methods, statistical analysis, and professional communication. Hands-on experience is a key component of this concentration. The program includes a sophomore practicum and a junior-year internship; this provides real-world experience in zoo and conservation settings and connect students with ongoing projects at the Blank Park Zoo and the Ape Cognition and Conservation Initiative, both of which are Drake partners located in Des Moines.
Drake’s Zoo and Conservation Science concentration is distinguished by its fundamental interdisciplinarity, emphasis on field experiences, opportunities for research and independent study, and service learning approach in the practicum and internship sequence. (This concentration is available only to students majoring in Biology, Environmental Science, Psychology, or Neuroscience.) Graduates of the program will be well prepared to work in work in the areas of animal behavior, wildlife rehabilitation, and animal conservation, or to pursue graduate study in diverse fields of zoological and environmental sciences.
The concentration requires completion of at least 15 credit hour that are not counted toward any other major, minor, or concentration. (This is to ensure that the additional credential represents genuine added competencies). The distribution of credits among departments varies due to cross-listing of courses.