Refurbished with the help of a $2.2 million grant from the Monsanto Fund, the MySci Resource Center houses educational classrooms, meeting rooms and a warehouse of educational science materials. With its opening, the science education center becomes the nerve center of the ISP, WUSTL’s signature effort to strategically improve teaching and learning within the K-12 education community in the St. Louis region.
MySci has been a cornerstone of the ISP’s work for the past eight years. The warehouse will help ISP transform the existing MySci program into a multifaceted approach that will both deepen the science content available within the MySci curriculum and broaden the reach of the MySci brand within the education and public community.
“Kids learn science by doing science — not just reading about it in a textbook and then looking at vocabulary terms,” says Victoria May, assistant dean of Arts & Sciences and executive director of the Institute for School Partnership. “So you want them to have the materials and supplies to explore and make sense. This warehouse is going to help us expand and improve what ISP has already been doing for STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in the community.”
Officials from Washington University, Monsanto Co., and the Monsanto Fund were on hand for the center opening, including May; Chancellor Mark S. Wrighton; Henry S. Webber, executive vice chancellor for administration; Jan Holloway, senior vice president, chief of staff and community relations for Monsanto Co.; Deborah Patterson, president of the Monsanto Fund; and Angela Kinlaw, principal of Barack Obama Elementary in the Normandy School District, a school that has been involved with the MySci program for several years.
Wrighton donned goggles and a lab coat to open the festivities and gave an entertaining and enlightening science demonstration. The WUSTL chancellor is a chemist by training and demonstrated to students from KIPP Inspire Academy and other area schools the magic of chemistry and how fun science can be.
More than 250 friends and stakeholders of the ISP, including area teachers, students and community partners as well as Washington University Faculty Fellows, attended the opening.
Leslie Gibson McCarthy is a senior news director in the Public Affairs Office.
For more information on MySci and the science education center, visit the WUSTL Newsroom: http://news.wustl.edu/news/Pages/24937.aspx.
To learn more about the ISP and its community outreach efforts, visit http://schoolpartnership.wustl.edu.