For the greater good

October 4th, 2010 - Posted in Annual Conference by Christine Ruffo

To be holistically engaged in science-and-society matters of regional, national, and/or global relevance requires new approaches to mission, vision, values, and strategy. In the October 4 session, “Science and Society: Illuminating What Matters,” panelists discussed how institutions can start to transform themselves with bold new aims, and perhaps more importantly, what the consequences are of not pressing forward for the greater good.

Here, panelist Emlyn Koster, president & CEO, Liberty Science Center, Jersey City, New Jersey, gives his thoughts on the important role science centers should play in illuminating the larger issues of science and society.

Having the evidence

October 4th, 2010 - Posted in Annual Conference by Wayne MacPhail

Karen Wise, vice president of the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, California, talks about how the evidence for the profound issues of our time lies within the walls of museums like hers. This interview was recorded on October 3, immediately after an ASTC Annual Conference session, “Transforming Natural History Museums: Our Relevance and Future,” at which Wise and other natural history museum administrators discussed the challenges internally and externally when natural history museums change themselves, their offerings, and their role in society.

One minute, one poster

October 4th, 2010 - Posted in Annual Conference by Wayne MacPhail

New to the annual conference this year, ASTC’s Poster Showcase featured projects that address ASTC’s strategic priorities: science and society leadership, impact and communications, professional development, and alliances and partnerships. We asked a few of the many poster session exhibitors in the Exhibit Hall to explain their work in about 60 seconds. Here’s how they did.

Lively science

October 4th, 2010 - Posted in Annual Conference by Christine Ruffo

The Live Demonstration Hour, a perennial ASTC Annual Conference favorite, delighted its audience once again. Here are some highlights from this year’s show, held October 3:

More videos are available on ASTC’s YouTube channel.

Videos by Wayne MacPhail. Photos by Christine Ruffo.

Empowering and inspiring youth

October 3rd, 2010 - Posted in Annual Conference by Emily Schuster

What makes a successful youth program? At the session “Making the Most of a Youth Development and Employment Program” at the ASTC Annual Conference on October 3, representatives from U.S. and U.K. science centers and museums described how they’re empowering youth to gain meaningful work experience, take on high levels of responsibility, increase their STEM knowledge, and grow within their institutions and communities.

Led by the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI), Queens, the science centers worked together with Geo Education & Research to create a shared assessment toolkit to develop resources and track annual progress of their Science Career Ladder youth programs. (To request a copy of the toolkit, e-mail Preeti Gupta, NYSCI’s senior vice president for education and family programs, at pgupta AT In addition to NYSCI, partners include COSI, Columbus, Ohio; Discovery Science Place, Tyler, Texas; Pacific Science Center, Seattle; Thinktank, Birmingham Science Museum, England, United Kingdom; and the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, New Haven, Connecticut.

The ASTC-led Youth Inspired Challenge (YIC), launched September 16, will document the impacts of these types of youth programs, resulting in greater investment and support for them. The YIC challenges ASTC members to engage youth, ages 10–19, in a total of 2 million hours of STEM-centered youth development programming over a three-year period. Click here to learn more.

Photo by Christine Ruffo

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