Museum Tech Academy
In Springfield, Illinois, 90 students ages 12–17 are learning about and conducting research in archeology and natural sciences (geology, botany, zoology) using information technology and field-based experiences.
The Museum Tech Academy provides enrichment in archaeology, natural sciences, and information technology for 90 low-income Springfield-area students in grades 7 through 12. This three-year, after-school and summer program engages students in the full process of scientific research from problem formulation to the presentation of results in a variety of media. Inquiry-driven activities in the Illinois State Museum's exhibitions, collections ranges, laboratories, and Technology Learning Center;Bonnie Styles and Museum Tech Academy students explore the Digital River Basin exhibit in the Illinois State Museum's new natural history hall.Saturday field trips; and summer field experiences with the Center for American Archeology introduce students to rich content and career paths in the sciences and technology. Students can explore areas of interest in information technology, natural sciences, and archaeology, and related career and college options with ISM and CAA and professionals and improve their skills and confidence. Each student engages in 436 contact hours and participates in all three phases of the project.