Partner Highlights

Partner Highlight: Museum on the Move: Traveling Nano Exhibition to Reach a New Audience in Maryland

Sarah Zimmerman, Port Discovery Children’s Museum
Port Discovery logo

Nanoscience and technology was found in an unlikely location when Port Discovery Children's Museum partnered with The James and Anne Robinson Nature Center in Columbia, Maryland.  Part of Port Discovery’s mission states that we “extend our impact by taking our programs community and state wide”.  Museum on the Move, the museum’s newest outreach initiative, does just that. The Robinson Nature Center was chosen as the pilot location because of their existing relationship with the museum and unique venue.  The Nano mini-exhibition has been displayed at countless science centers and children’s museums, but never a nature center.  Port Discovery and Robinson were excited to bring a unique topic to the nature center. 

Partner Highlight: AmeriCorps VISTA Member Brings NanoDays to Montana State University’s Family and Graduate Housing

Suzi Taylor, Montana State University

An annual Halloween festival for children received an infusion of Nano when an AmeriCorps VISTA member based at Montana State University brought NanoDays activities to the university’s Family & Graduate Housing. Families from around the world live in MSU’s Family Housing complex, where children range from newborn to 18 and who hail from all backgrounds: single-parent families, low-income families, military families, etc. Many countries are also represented, including Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, India, China, Japan, Nepal, Lebanon and Brazil as well as families from around Montana and the U.S.

Partner Highlight: A “viaje” (journey) to remember: A foundation of trust built between Adventure Science Center and Conexión Américas inspires Nano Family Science Event

Kayla Berry, Musuem of Science and Larry Dunlap-Berg, Adventure Science Center

The Adventure Science Center, located in Nashville, Tennessee, is a premier attraction and learning center for visitors throughout Middle Tennessee and lives its mission to “ignite curiosity and inspire the lifelong discovery of science!” Learning does not solely take place inside the science center’s walls, it extends well beyond them and in many different forms. As a 2015 NISE Net Mini-Grant recipient, Adventure Science Center was able to leverage an established relationship with a local community organization, Conexión Américas, whose mission is to assist Latino families through programs that focus on social, economic and civic integration.

Partner Highlight: Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) and Chicas Youth Development Program: A Bilingual, Bicultural Collaboration Model

Veronika Nunez, OMSI

The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) has a history of fruitful collaboration with one of the most focused and dedicated local community organizations providing support to Latina girls and women in the state of Oregon: Adelante Mujeres. Adelante Mujeres, through the Chicas Youth Development Program (one of their many programs), helps participants to develop their potential as community leaders, adopt a healthy lifestyle, develop their cultural identity, and achieve academic success in their education, from school to their enrollment in college. Over the past few years, OMSI and Chicas Youth Development Program have collaborated in various ways, including OMSI’s participation during their STEM summer camp week.

Partner Highlight: "Making More of the MOST" Out of Museum and Community Partnerships at the Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science & Technology in Syracuse, NY

Kayla Berry, Museum of Science, Boston

During the summer months, youth often have more free time on their hands, and many families find themselves seeking ways to keep their children safe and engaged when not in school. Youth-serving and community-based organizations such as the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Scouts, YMCA, and public libraries provide countless benefits and opportunities to the youth they serve year-round. At the intersection of youth-serving and community-based organizations seeking to provide high-quality STEM learning experiences to their audiences and for science museums seeking to reach underserved audiences not currently engaged in nanoscale science, engineering, and technology, there presents a unique and rich partnership opportunity for local community organizations and science museums.

Partner Highlight: An Invasive Beetle Puts a Local Spin on Penn State’s NanoDays 2015

Jayatri Das, The Franklin Institute, and NISE Network Mid-Atlantic Regional Hub Leader

In her position as Program Director for Education and Outreach at Penn State University's Center for Nanoscale Science, Kristin Dreyer's initiatives reach a wide range of audiences. For NanoDays 2015, she planned three different events targeting children and families (through a festival-style NanoDays at a local museum), research colleagues (through a weekly café), and grade 6-12 teachers (through a teacher workshop). Working to leverage the intersection of these events, Kristin recruited graduate student volunteers who could commit to participating in all three events to achieve "bigger picture" broader impact goals.

Partner Highlight: More Than Meets the “I” at Brooklyn Children’s Museum

Marcos Stafne, PhD, Brooklyn Children’s Museum

How do you get a science center, technology museum, a national science network, a public library system, a 3D printing service and marketplace, a camera company, and a university research center to work together—you just have to pick up the phone and talk about nanotechnology.

Partner Highlight: Real-World Examples of NISE Net's Team-Based Inquiry (TBI) - Tulsa Children’s Museum Shares Their Evaluation and Capacity Building Project

Linda Allegro, Tulsa Children's Museum

Opening less than two years ago, Tulsa Children’s Museum's Discovery Lab hosted their organization’s first Nano Camps last summer. This newest camp program was supported by a NISE Net mini-grant and staff also participated in the 2014 Team-Based Inquiry (TBI) Cohort to help them evaluate and improve the program.

Partner Highlight: Real-World Examples of NISE Net's Team-Based Inquiry (TBI) - Maryland Science Center Shares Their Evaluation and Capacity Building Project

Abby Goodlaxson, Maryland Science Center

In 2014, Maryland Science Center was awarded a NISE Net mini-grant and was invited to participate in the 2014 Team-Based Inquiry Cohort, which was made up of 20 staff from 10 NISE Net partner institutions, providing cohorts with in-depth TBI professional development training both virtually and in-person. As part of their mini-grant project, Maryland Science Center created a new stage program presented on their museum's demonstration stage introducing audiences to nanoscale science and engineering, supported by a training session on nanotechnology for staff and volunteers.

NISE Net Partners Learn-by-Doing the MOS "Sharing Science Workshop & Practicum" with Grad Students in Boston

Carol Lynn Alpert

NISE Network partners flew in from southern Mississippi, Montana, California, North Carolina, Ohio, and New York to participate in the Network's "Sharing Science Workshop & Practicum," a professional development program in nanoscale informal science and education for early career researchers, with the goal of implementing their own professional development workshop at their institution in the coming year.