Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science, a free, three-day, grant-funded professional development opportunity for middle and high school science educators, with all room and board included.


The Hawai'i Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science have been postponed to Spring Break, March 2022. Applications for the 2022 Hawai'i Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science are open through January 30, 2022! Tentative dates and a description for the workshop are listed below.

Applications and registration for the San Diego-based 2022 Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science will be open by early February 2022. Please add your name to our notification list if you'd like to be notified when the 2022 Teacher Workshops application/registration opens.

Teacher Workshops Overview

Our free professional development workshops for middle school and high school science teachers began with 12 participants in the summer of 2006. A dozen high school life science teachers from all over Southern California were invited to the Beckman Center for Conservation Research, housed behind the scenes at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, to experience a week in the life of a conservation scientist. The pilot program focused on the conservation history and recovery of the California condor, and was designed to bring topics of conservation science into local classrooms.

Over a decade later, we have built a nationally recognized and fully accredited program with a stellar reputation for giving teachers access to unparalleled information and experiences. To date, we have trained more than 1,500 middle and high school science teachers and informal science educators from all 50 states and 22 countries. Participants spend their days in intensive study in the Conservation Education Lab and their evenings at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, engaging with staff members and acquiring invaluable new skills to take back to their home campuses. During the workshop, teachers work together to frame content standards in the context of wildlife conservation and explore ways to challenge students to apply textbook knowledge of life science to current biodiversity challenges. Participants engage in activities that focus on critical issues facing endangered species using a variety of advanced technical tools and techniques; all activities support the Next Generation Science Standards and can be implemented back in the classroom. Our generous grant-funded scholarships allow this residential program to include all meals, lodging and materials for free, as well as a $500 stipend to help offset any travel or childcare expenses, paid upon full completion of the program.

2020  TW Impact Maps




We welcome applications from both informal and formal educators who work with 6th-12th+ audiences. For formal 6-12+ educators, our emphasis is now on site teams of 2-3, with at least one science teacher “anchor”, and 1-2 non-science teachers interested in incorporating conservation in their subjects and engaging in cross-curricular projects centered on student action and wildlife conservation!

In 2018, we piloted workshops in three new locations: Hawai'i, Michigan, and Kenya. In 2022, we plan to deliver two workshops in Hawai'i, one on the Big Island and one in Maui. Applicants to these workshops are restricted to the islands of Hawai'i and Kauai for the Big Island workshop, and Maui for the Maui workshop. Our generous grant-funded scholarships allow these programs to include meals and materials for free, as well as a $250 stipend to help offset any travel or childcare expenses, paid upon full completion of the program.

Every year, we welcome participants from every state and country to our traditional workshops based out of San Diego. This year, out of an abundance of caution we are restricting applications and registrations to residents of Arizona, California, and Nevada (with a select few from Colorado). Teacher Workshops is a free, professional development program. We do offer a registration option for educators with access to professional development funds that can cover the cost of attending Teacher Workshops. Educators who wish to register (as opposed to apply for the workshop for free) and guarantee their spot will pay a $2,000 fee which includes all the same experiences and accommodations as applicants, minus the stipend. 

Program Time Commitment & Coursework

Accepted participants can expect to spend approximately nine hours completing online assignments via Google Classroom prior to their in-person dates.

For our traditional San Diego-based workshops, in-person dates include lodging, meals, conservation science modules, evening special experiences, and Safari Park exploration. A typical day starts with breakfast at 7 a.m., and wraps up for personal time by 8 p.m.

In-person dates for Hawai'i Teacher Workshops also include lodging, meals, conservation science modules, and a trip to Keauhou Bird Conservation Center! A typical day starts with breakfast at 8 a.m., and wraps up with dinner at 6 p.m.

In-person dates for Maui Teacher Workshops take place at the beautiful Maui Bird Conservation Center and include meals, conservation science modules, and more. We imagine a typical day will start around 8:30 a.m. and wrap up around 6 p.m., with more updates to come!


2022 Teacher Workshops 

Applications for Hawai'i and Maui Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science are open! Tentative dates are listed below. Applicants for these workshops will be notified in February 2022.

Click on the location you wish to apply/register to:

Apply here to Hawai'i Teacher Workshops in Volcano, Hawai’i Island - ONLY for Hawai’i and Kauai Island middle school educators.

March 17-20, 2022 Middle School Focus 

Apply here to Maui Teacher Workshops at the Maui Bird Conservation Center - ONLY for Maui island middle and high school educators.

March 12-15, 2022

Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science in Escondido, California

July 11–13, 2022 High School Focus

July 18-20, 2022 Middle School Focus

July 25-27, 2022 High School Focus

August 1-3, 2022 Middle School Focus

August 8-10, 2022 High School Focus

If you are interested in donating to this program, please contact Maggie Aleksic at maleksic@sdzwa.org.

Program Contact: teacherworkshops@sdzwa.org


Teacher Workshops in Conservation Science Alumni

If you have any questions about the curriculum or kit program that you learned about during Teacher Workshops, please email us at teacherworkshops@sdzwa.org and we'll get back to you ASAP. 

If your school or contact info has changed since you attended Teacher Workshops, please reach out to us with your new info so we can keep you in the loop about field trip and kit opening announcements. 

If you are interested in field trips at the Beckman Center or the Advanced Inquiry Program Master's degree, head on over to those pages to learn more!

You are our number one asset in making conservation impact. Thank YOU for all you do as educators to inspire a passion for nature in your students, now more than ever. If there is any way we can support conservation science in your classroom, please email us and let us know. And thank you for spreading the word about Teacher Workshops every spring!

Teacher Workshops Flyer