National Children’s Museum Unveils New Exhibit Highlighting Diverse Women in STEM Careers
December 1, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON — National Children’s Museum, a learn-through-play institution in downtown DC dedicated to sparking curiosity in the next generation of innovators through science, technology, engineering, arts, and math focused exhibits and programs, has partnered with the Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) and the IF/THEN Collection to open a new exhibit, The STEAM in Me, on Thursday that highlights diverse women in STEM fields.
National Children’s Museum was one of two institutions nationwide awarded with an ASTC grant to develop an exhibit featuring the work of Lyda Hill Philanthropies’ IF/THEN Collection Ambassadors. The purpose of the grant is to develop exemplary exhibits that can be replicated by children’s museums across the country who hope to inspire their communities by spotlighting diverse women in STEM. The experience design and materials are available in ASTC’s IF/THEN Project Library for other institutions to download and adapt for their own use.
“We are pleased to work with National Children’s Museum to bring the amazing women in STEM featured in the IF/THEN Collection to life in a way that connects with early learners,” said Christofer Nelson, President and CEO of ASTC. “With support from grants supported by Lyda Hill Philanthropes, the exhibit content created by the National Children’s Museum is already being replicated at museums, libraries, and cultural institutions around the country.”
The STEAM in Me exhibit has two corresponding experiences. The first experience is a series of six dream job spotlight posters, each of which features an authentic photo of a woman in her STEM profession; a zippy, age-appropriate description of her work; and a summary of how her unique identity and skillset helps change the world. The second experience is a life-size photo moment where visitors select words and images that describe who they are and how they change the world, ultimately creating their own STEM spotlight posters.
“To solve the world’s most complex problems, we need diverse, talented innovators who can approach issues from unique perspectives. Research has shown that children may lose interest in STEM subjects as early as twelve years old. Representation matters, and it is critical that all young visitors are able to see themselves in science, technology, engineering, arts and math careers,” says Crystal R. Bowyer, President and CEO of National Children’s Museum. “We are thrilled to partner with ASTC around the IF/THEN Collection to showcase the incredible innovation of these women in STEM, which will inspire the next generation of STEM leaders.”
Highlighted IF/THEN Ambassadors include:
Dr. Wendy Bohon, Geologist and Science Communication Specialist
Dana Bowles, Spaceflight Engineer
Jessica Cramp, Shark Researcher and Marine Conservationist
Ellie Maybury, Sports Scientist
Samantha Porter, Digital Archaeologist
Rae Wynn-Grant, Large Carnivore Ecologist
The STEAM in Me exhibit is included in the Museum’s price of admission. Visitors may purchase advance tickets and learn more about the Museum’s offerings at www.nationalchildrensmuseum.org.
Interested institutions can learn more about the IF/THEN Collection at www.ifthencollection.org/ and ASTC’s IF/THEN Project Library at https://www.astc.org/ifthen/project-library/.
About National Children’s Museum
STEAM adventure awaits at National Children’s Museum, located in the heart of downtown Washington, D.C.! With a mission to inspire children to care about and change the world, the Museum sparks curiosity and ignites creativity for children under the age of twelve and their families. Through playful science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) based exhibits, programs, and virtual offerings, the Museum reaches millions of people each year. Learn more and plan your visit at nationalchildrensmuseum.org.
About Association of Science and Technology Centers
Founded in 1973, ASTC is a network of more than 600 science and technology centers and museums, and allied organizations, engaging more than 110 million people annually across North America and in almost 50 countries. With its members and partners, ASTC works towards a vision of increased understanding of and engagement with science and technology among all people. www.astc.org
Follow ASTC on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram @ScienceCenters.
About the IF/THEN Collection
The IF/THEN® Collection is the largest free resource of its kind dedicated to increasing access to authentic and relatable images of real women in STEM. The digital library contains thousands of photos, videos and other assets that authentically represent women in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The Collection is part of the IF/THEN® Initiative, a national effort sponsored by Lyda Hill Philanthropies® to inspire young girls to pursue STEM careers while creating a culture shift in how the world perceives women in STEM. The Collection features 125 female STEM innovators selected by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and Lyda Hill Philanthropies® to be AAAS IF/THEN® Ambassadors, all serving as high-profile role models for girls.