Several science centers on the coast are among 53 statewide to be awarded $2.4 million through the North Carolina Science Museums grant program.
In its sixth year, the grant program awards funds based on criteria that advance the goal of enhancing science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM, education opportunities for the public, particularly in low-resource communities, officials said.
“Science museums and educational centers spark curiosity and foster a love for scientific inquiry, helping to cultivate the next generation of innovators and problem solvers,” state Department of Natural and Cultural Resources Secretary D. Reid Wilson said in a statement. “Reliance on high quality science is essential to our ability to meet our state’s big challenges in the future.”
The awards, ranging from $14,804 to $75,000, will be applied to the 2023–2024 fiscal year budgets of these science centers.
“We have more science museums in North Carolina than any other state and this funding supports them as they advance science education,” said Darrell Stover, head of the North Carolina Science Museums Grant Program at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences.
Bertie County’s Roanoke/Cashie River Center in Windsor was awarded $75,000.
The Carteret County-based Core Sound Waterfowl Museum and Heritage Center on Harkers Island was awarded $51,687.
Three New Hanover County locations received awards. Airlie Gardens was awarded $26,996, Cape Fear Museum of History and Science was awarded $20,705 and The Children’s Museum of Wilmington received $21,528.
Sturgeon City Environmental Education Center in Jacksonville was awarded $36,804.
Port Discover hands-on STEM center in Elizabeth City was awarded $60,000.
Another round of grant awards is scheduled for the next fiscal year. To apply for the next grant cycle, visit ncmuseumgrant.naturalsciences.org.