Students from McCurdy Elementary enjoy visiting the Bradbury Science Museum recently. Courtesy/BSMA
In partnership with the Bradbury Science Museum Association (BSMA), Enterprise Bank (EB&T), recently provided transportation for 796 students to visit the Bradbury Science Museum during Spring 2019.
The BSMA/EB&T partnership has enabled students from northern New Mexico Title 1 Schools to travel to the museum and visit Los Alamos.
“Providing students from Title 1 schools with a field trip to the Bradbury Science Museum has been an amazing experience,” Ryn Herrmann, said. “Exposing northern New Mexico students to the many STEM exhibits at the museum can spark an interest in science, technology, engineering or math, and our hope is these students will become inspired to receive an education in these fields and possibly even work at Los Alamos National Laboratory,” Herrmann explained. “We thank Enterprise Bank and Trust for giving us the opportunity to bring these students to Los Alamos!”
During the field trips, students enjoy working in teams to solve engineering problems and then tour the museum galleries looking for the many ways engineering has an impact on their everyday lives.
“This year we have been providing students with additional hands-on experiences beyond a normal museum visit by offering school groups a choice of a theme based on either the Manhattan Project or engineering,” Mel Strong, Bradbury Science Museum Community Educator said. “The engineering theme includes an introduction to the field engineering, an engineering challenge and an exploration of LANL engineering examples on display in the museum. The Manhattan Project theme includes watching the film Racing Towards Dawn, hands-on experiences with WWII-era communications – such as Morse Code, encrypting and decrypting messages – and exploring the historical people, artifacts, and events of the Manhattan Project on display at the museum,” Strong added. “The additional hands-on component makes the experiences more meaningful and enjoyable than simply browsing the exhibits. We will have even more themes developed for next year’s visiting school groups, and so far, the response from both the teachers and the students has been very positive.”
Students from McCurdy Elementary were just one of many field trip groups who visited the museum recently, and Sheila Cantrell, a McCurdy Elementary teacher expressed her thanks for the field trip.
“My sincere thanks for being invited a second year! It is always difficult for us to plan field trips due to limited funding, and the bank’s generosity allowed many of my students, who have never experienced a museum, to have a very thoughtful and wonderful day learning about engineering. I hope we can bring a whole new group of eager learners to the Bradbury Science Museum next year.”
The BSMA/LANB partnership began in 2017 and continues as the BSMA/EB&T Field Trip Scholarship Partnership.
“Enterprise Bank is committed to continuing the longstanding LANB tradition of community engagement and supporting our students by providing access to the extraordinary resources our state has to offer, like the Bradbury Museum,” Liddie Martinez, President- Los Alamos Region and Director of Community Engagement said. “It has been a privilege to assist in expanding their learning environments and to watch them engage in STEM activities with classmates to develop real world solutions to pending problems,” Martinez said. “I’ve had the pleasure of watching them laugh and have fun while working through an engineering problem, and it is as wonderful to see them learn from those ideas that did not quite work out as much as to celebrate their successes.
The BSMA is the 501(c)3 non-profit partner to the Bradbury Science Museum with the mission of promoting STEM education opportunities for people of all ages; and providing field trips for low-income students throughout northern New Mexico is one example of the BSMA’s STEM education outreach efforts. To learn more about the BSMA, visit www.bradburyassociation.org.