- Middle School
LincUPtoLearn–Lincoln’s mentoring program that connects current students and alumnae–is taking place during the first two weeks of April, and last Thursday, Mary-Alice Trendell ’24, Holiday Horton ’24, and Dunedin Imbier-Maher ’24 visited Shareen Zaki Knowlton ’88, the Director of Education at Roger Williams Park Zoo. They experienced one of the many classes the zoo offers to members of the local community, learned about its conservation efforts, and got up close and personal with some of the animals and their caretakers. Mary-Alice and Holiday share their reflections on the visit in this blog post!
Holiday Horton ’24
For the LincUPtoLearn visit, we went to Roger Williams Park Zoo and learned about how they teach visitors and kids about rainforests, animals, the environment, etc. We went to a preschool class where we watched and got involved with teaching the little kids about binturongs. Then we went and saw the behind-the-scenes of the zoo work. We went to a place where they are breeding endangered bunnies in the hope to bring their population up, and we got to go down and see their very own hospital for the zoo animals. For the last part, we went into their new rainforest exhibit and learned a lot about the people who work there and the animals. It was all extraordinary.
My favorite part of the visit was to see all the different things that this zoo is doing to help the environment, like the bunny breeding. I also had no idea that they taught little kids about animals and what you could do to help them. What I have really learned is that they are more than just a zoo. I had no idea that they had their own hospital!!! They do more a lot more than you think.
What surprised me is that there is much more than the zoo. When you think of someone who works at the zoo, you think of a zookeeper. Right? Well there are many more than just that! There are a lot more than just zookeepers, there are education directors, admissions, graphic designers, teachers, and many more.
Mary-Alice Trendell ’24
First, we went to a Pre-K adventure class. Then we saw some animals, and asked Shareen some questions. Then we went to see pregnant bunnies with Lou, and he talked to us about breeding, what they do at the zoo, and what he does. He then took us down to see the on-site veterinary hospital and meet two of the vets. Then we had lunch and talked to Shareen more. Then we went to see their new rainforest exhibit, and Shareen talked to us about the process of making it. After that, we asked some more questions and then we had to go.
My favorite part of the visit was learning about what Lou does because what his job is seemed really interesting to me. I also really liked seeing the rainforest exhibit because it’s new and there were so many animals in there. The howler monkeys were very loud!
What surprised me the most was that the zoo does a lot of behind-the-scenes conservation work, like breeding endangered species. I was also surprised that we went with a lot of different people to learn about their jobs rather than staying with Shareen the whole day.
Stay tuned here, as well as on Instagram, Facebook, and Lincoln Connect, for more behind-the-scenes footage of LincUPtoLearn!
Are you an alumnae interested in participating in next year’s LincUPtoLearn? Reach out to Courtney Trafton, Associate Director of Advancement, at firstname.lastname@example.org.