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updated: 2/22/2013 4:38 PM

Zoo institute seeks to better engage youth

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Associated Press

A new educational institute at Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo is launching several initiatives to better engage young people in science learning.

The Hurvis Center for Learning Innovation and Collaboration has created an iPad app called Observe to Learn, which becomes available this week. It allows users to learn more about the behavior of animals in their backyards, local zoos or nearby parks.

It's designed to complement programs at informal learning institutions and schools. It's also available in Spanish.

In another new initiative, the Hurvis Center is accepting applications from Chicago-area high school students for two free programs designed to get them interested in possible careers at zoos, aquariums and museums. One of the programs is a four-week apprenticeship offering a chance to work alongside a Lincoln Park Zoo scientist.

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