41 science centers across NC receive grant to enhance STEM education

Christine T. Nguyen—The North State Journal
Three models of pterosaurs are displayed at the Terror of the South room during the third annual Natural Selections event on Friday

RALEIGH — The North Carolina Science Museums Grant Program will award $2.44 million to 41 science centers from the Core Sound Waterfowl Museum to the Highlands Nature Center. The grant was awarded to continue the state’s investment in sustaining and advancing science museums across the country, and concentrates its criteria that promotes the priorities of state government to enhance STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics education), especially in low-resource communities. “These museums are critical resources for schools and communities in providing learning experiences in and out of the classroom that enhance science literacy,” Charles Yelton, the chief of Regional Networks for the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and lead administrator of the Grant Program, said. The awards, which ranged from $51,912.92 to $76,912.92, will be applied to the 2016-2017 fiscal year budgets of these science centers. The 40 most economically distressed counties (Tier 1) will receive the largest awards.Tier 1: Port Discover, Discovery Place Kids (Rockingham), Aurora Fossil Museum, Exploration Station, KidSenses Children’s Museum, Sylvian Heights Bird Park, Roanoke/Cashie River Center, Highlands Nature Center, NC Estuarium, Rocky Mount Children’s Museum and Science Center.Tier 2: Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation, Go-Science, Mt. Airy Museum of Regional History, FascinateU, Cowan Museum of History and Science, Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute, Dan Nichols Wildlife and Nature Center, Imagination Station, Catawba Science Center, A Time for Science, Schiele Museum of Natural History, Walter Stasavich Science and Nature Center/Love a Sea Turtle.Tier 3: Core Sound Waterfowl Museum, Greensboro Science Center, Museum of Coastal Carolina and Ingram Planetarium, Marbles Kid’s Museum, ScienceWorks/Children’s Museum of Winston-Salem, Iredell Museums, Hands On! Children’s Gallery, Carolina Raptor Center, Children’s Museum of Wilmington, Cape Fear Museum of History and Science, Asheville Museum of Science, Discovery Place, Western North Carolina Nature Center, North Carolina Museum of Life and Science, Discovery Place Kids (Huntersville), Charlotte Nature Museum, KidZu Children’s Museum, Morehead Planetarium and Science Center, North Carolina Botanical Gardens.