Lincoln-Way West senior accepted into King Conservation Science Scholars ProgramThursday, May 18, 2017
On Tuesday, May 16, 2017, senior Allison Caskey of Lincoln-Way West was notified of her acceptance into the King Conservation Science Scholars Program at Brookfield Zoo. The program offers a hands-on experience for teens to learn about animals and conservation, network with others, and make a difference in their communities while preparing for college and future careers. While enrolled, students attend interactive workshops, participate in research studies and activities at the zoo, and attend career and college readiness courses.
Because of the number of hours required to complete the program (120), typically, seniors are not accepted. The program actively recruits incoming freshmen through juniors, but Caskey’s application must have stood out. “They typically do not allow students who will become seniors to participate, which speaks well of Allie,” says Caskey’s AP Environmental Science teacher, Gary Henderson.
The highly competitive process selects approximately 10% of applicants. Of the roughly 300 students who apply to the program, 150 are offered interviews. From the 150 interviews, only 30-40 students are chosen to participate.
Caskey hopes to break up the hourly requirements by securing 60 hours in the fall semester, and 60 more in the spring. “They encourage outside participation, so to be spending a lot of my summer downtown with the Chicago Zoological Society is pretty exciting,” she says.
In terms of college, Caskey is keeping her options open, but is aiming toward a career in science. “I’m looking at University of Chicago right now…I’ve been really set on medical for a long time, but with this opportunity, I’m leaning toward environmental engineering.”