On May 5, 2015, the National Science Board (NSB) presented the Museum with its Public Service Award, a prize awarded for exemplary contributions to the public understanding of science.
"We are honored to receive this award from the National Science Board in recognition of the Museum's efforts to address the national crisis in science education, to increase the public understanding of science, and to prepare the next generation of scientists, science teachers and scientifically literate citizens," said President Ellen Futter.
Engineer Vint Cerf, chair of the NSB’s committee on honorary awards, emphasized the impact of the Museum’s award-winning exhibitions and educational programs.
“Each year, the American Museum of Natural History shares the excitement and wonder of science with millions of teachers, families, and other members of the public with its exhibitions and public programs,” said Cerf.
The Museum’s signature educational programs include Urban Advantage, a partnership with the New York City Department of Education and other science-rich cultural institutions that supports science investigations in public middle schools and hosts one of the largest science expos in the city.
Other model programs include the Science Research Mentoring Program, which offers under-resourced high school students the opportunity to learn laboratory skills and pursue research projects under the guidance of Museum scientists. Fiscal year 2015 also saw the launch of the pilot program BridgeUp: STEM, which promotes the use of computer science in scientific research and communication and focuses on promoting computer science to young women and middle-school youth in under-resourced schools.
Support for the Science Research Mentoring Program at the American Museum of Natural History is provided by Christopher C. Davis, The Shelby Cullom Davis Charitable Fund; The Pinkerton Foundation; the Bezos Family Foundation; the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation; the Solon E. Summerfield Foundation; Inc.; the Adolf and Ruth Schnurmacher Foundation; and an anonymous donor.
Complimentary test preparation and college admissions support for program participants is generously provided by Kaplan Test Prep.
BridgeUp:STEM is generously supported by a grant from the Helen Gurley Brown Trust.
Public support for the Urban Advantage program is provided by the Speaker and Council of the City of New York, and the New York City Department of Education.