Sparsholt College in Hampshire has today launched The National Zoo Academy. This exciting move cements its longstanding reputation as the place to go for the best training and education for those seeking to enter or already employed in the zoo sector. 

The creation of The National Zoo Academy reflects the immense support from the Zookeeper profession for Sparsholt College in establishing the range and depth of Sparsholt’s suite of highly specialist zoo training and management qualifications alongside its work improving animal welfare and promoting conservation through its zoo-licensed Animal Management Centre. 

Sparsholt offers unique training to the zoological profession throughout the British Isles, Europe and worldwide. Its extensive Animal Management Centre was one of the first licensed zoos in a UK college or university. It provides leading-edge facilities to support extensive study programmes up to Master’s degree level through the active industry links of our teaching teams. 

Andy Beer, Director of Zoo Management Studies, said: “I am delighted we are launching The National Zoo Academy, a unique offer which we have developed and delivered for the zoo community in conjunction with The British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA). Our DMZAA (Diploma in the Management of Zoo and Aquarium Animals) developed in conjunction since 2002 with BIAZA. It was the first completely paperless distance learning qualification for zookeepers, marking another ‘first’ as it will be the first qualification to be benchmarked against the European Professional Zookeeper Professional Qualification Framework.” an initiative was completed in partnership with the European Association of Zoos and Aquariums (EAZA). 

“Adding to our pre-eminence in zookeeper training we will now be the only organisation able to offer certified, City & Guilds training for Zoo Licensing for Inspectors and Local Government Officers. Our Award in Zoo Licensing Inspection, Great Britain has been approved by the Zoo Expert Committee of Defra (Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs). This is recognition that our qualifications are the gold standard for animal care and zookeeper professional development and a fantastic accolade.” 

Speaking in support of the development of the National Zoo Academy, Douglas Richardson Head of Living Collections, Highland Wildlife Park (RZSS) and Vice Chair of BIAZA said: “The establishment of the National Zoo Academy is the next evolutionary step in educating tomorrow’s zoo professionals and Sparsholt is uniquley placed to drive this important national initiative.” 

To join the experts and experience Sparsholt, the home of The National Zoo Academy, come along to our next Open Event for Sparsholt College and University Centre Sparsholt on Saturday 17 November 2018, 10am-2pm. Book a place now. Or if you are interested in degree studies find out more here.