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HHMI Invites Museums to Compete for Grants


HHMI has invited approximately 800 museums and other centers for informal community science education nationwide to compete for grants totaling $12 million.

Sometimes the most effective science education occurs outside of the classroom. Recognizing that, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) has invited approximately 800 museums and other centers for informal community science education nationwide to compete for grants totaling $12 million. The grants from HHMI's Precollege Science Education program will help nurture and expand programs that stimulate enthusiasm for science, particularly among young people and families.

This is the fourth round of awards from HHMI to community-based science institutions. To date, the Institute has awarded 96 grants totaling $18.6 million through this program. It plans to award approximately 40 four-year grants ranging from $200,000 to $500,000 through the new competition, whose deadline for applications is September 29, 2000. HHMI will announce the new grants awards in July 2001.

Some museums
provide hands-on science experiences
for children of
many ages.

Successful proposals in the past have included programs:

  • to strengthen the science literacy of teachers, children and their families.
  • to enhance teachers' skills in teaching science.
  • to provide resources such as science kits and curriculum to support improved science teaching.
  • to involve families and communities in their children's science education.
  • to increase interest in science education and research careers among young people, particularly those underrepresented in science-oriented careers.
  • to foster collaboration among informal science education organizations and other community institutions such as schools.

Science museums and related institutions are adept at integrating informal and formal educational approaches to meet needs often not addressed by schools. They can reach a wide and diverse audience, especially families with children in inner city or rural areas that may not have an opportunity to engage in high-quality science education experiences.

A panel of distinguished scientists, museum program specialists and educators will review the proposals and advise HHMI staff, who then will make recommendations for awards to the Institute's Trustees.

HHMI's grants program supports science education in the United States and a select group of researchers in other countries. The program complements the Institute's principal mission of conducting research in cell biology, computational biology, genetics, immunology, neuroscience and structural biology with its own scientific teams. About 350 investigators are employed in HHMI laboratories at 72 academic medical centers and research institutions across the United States. Altogether, the Institute has awarded more than $1 billion in grants, primarily to enhance science education from preschool through postdoctoral studies. Additional information is available at www.hhmi.org.

For More Information

Jim Keeley
[ 301.215.8858 ]