School Programs Manager
Year zoo career began:
Thaisa Bell serves as the School Programs Manager at Nashville Zoo, where she offers programs for school groups (both outreach and onsite), is a liaison between local schools and the Zoo, and also oversees the teen volunteer and college internship programs. Thaisa has been a member of Nashville Zoo’s education department for 18 years, where she was initially hired as an Education show staff member in 2003.
Thaisa grew up loving animals, and attended Ohio University knowing that she desired a career working with wildlife, but was unsure of the specific path until a seasonal position with Columbus Zoo’s Show Staff opened her eyes to a new passion—educating others about wildlife. This seasonal position, and the mentorship she received there, would later lead her to apply for the Education Show staff position at Nashville Zoo.
Thaisa is frequently asked by students of all ages how to get started working in animal care/conservation education, etc., and her typical reply is: seek out volunteer and internship opportunities because it is a great way to get experience, network, and get your foot in the door. Her favorite animals are owls and sloths (all kinds), both of which she has had the privilege of working closely with. When she is not at the Zoo, Thaisa enjoys being outdoors, gardening and doing home improvement projects.