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Franklin Institute honored at White House ceremony

(left to right) First Lady Laura Bush, Albert J. Hicks, III, Franklin Institute director Dennis Wint, and IMLS director Anne Radice The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was honored yesterday at a White House ceremony as a 2008 National Medal for Museum and Library Service recipient. The award is given annually by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), in coordination with the White House, to 10 museums and libraries in recognition of their extraordinary civic, educational, economic, environmental, and social contributions. IMLS is the primary source of U.S. federal funding for museums and libraries. U.S. Representative Chaka Fattah of Pennsylvania’s 2nd Congressional District congratulated the museum, saying, “The Franklin is the cherished destination and learning experience for every boy, girl, and parent in our region, usually more than once…and I look forward to my family’s next visit.”

Dr. Albert Hicks III’s (shown here with First Lady Laura Bush, Albert J. Hicks, III, Franklin Institute director Dennis Wint, and IMLS director Anne Radice ) passion for science was ignited at age 13 when his uncle encouraged him to join the Franklin Institute’s Partnerships for Careers in Technology and Science (PACTS) program. Hicks participated in science workshops, on topics such as biological science and chemical engineering, then in high school continued to participate in the program as an explainer. In college, he was in charge of the Franklin’s explainers and summer programs, creating daily agendas and supervising biological research on a local lake in Fairmount Park. Now in residency at Drexel’s College of Medicine, he credits the Franklin Institute’s PACTS program with giving him skills he needs as a physician. “The program developed my confidence in public speaking, improved my interpersonal skills, and enriched my love of science,” Hicks says.

About the image: (left to right) First Lady Laura Bush, Albert J. Hicks, III, Franklin Institute director Dennis Wint, and IMLS director Anne Radice

Photo courtesy IMLS