GSK Science in the Summer™, a free summer STEM program that aims to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers by providing opportunities for children to embody science careers, think scientifically, practice authentic science techniques, and have fun, returns this summer as a hybrid program, including both in-person classes and virtual components, with a new theme: Be an Engineer!
This all-new curriculum invites children to play the role of engineers and tackle challenges in electrical, biomedical, environmental, and structural engineering through at-home experiments, videos, and live virtual events. Students will explore the engineering design process as they solve real-world problems—including managing a playground’s stormwater runoff and designing a sturdy lightweight pedestrian bridge.
Provided by GSK in partnership with Philadelphia’s Franklin Institute and administered through the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History since 2015, this fun, 100% free STEM enrichment program helps prevent the summer slide and works to keep students engaged with learning through fun, hands-on activities that will help ignite a lifelong passion for science. This year, the program is expected to reach more than 28,000 students at 32 informal science organizations across the country*.
“Scientists are finding solutions to problems today that we never thought we would face, so it’s even more important than ever to foster students’ interest in science early on so they can see themselves on that trajectory,” said Becki Lynch, Director, US Community Partnerships at GSK. “GSK Science in the Summer™ gives students the opportunity to embody the role of scientists—identify a problem, find solutions, and test the results, and that’s what science is all about, solving the unsolvable challenges.”
GSK Science in the Summer™ was created in Philadelphia as part of GSK’s commitment to supporting STEM education. In 2021, the program celebrates its 35th anniversary, and each year it continues to grow and improve to remain fresh, engaging, and relevant for children across the country. This summer, nearly 900 children in the Fort Worth area will join thousands more GSK Science in the Summer™ students nationwide as they learn the importance of engineering through fun, hands-on, age-appropriate experiments at local community organizations and virtual events.
Science in the Summer™ is uniquely impactful in that it takes what students are learning in the classroom and brings it to life, creating a cohesive learning experience that ties everything together and resonates,” said Dr. Darryl Williams, Chemical Engineer and Senior Vice President of Science and Education at The Franklin Institute. “Science is at the forefront now more than ever and ensuring that underserved and traditionally underrepresented youth across the country have opportunities to see themselves as engineers, chemists, or doctors will help create a more diverse STEM workforce.”
The GSK Science in the Summer™ curriculum is developed by The Franklin Institute and is freely available at scienceinthesummer.fi.edu. *The GSK Science in the Summer™ national network is sponsored by GSK and offered in partnership with The Franklin Institute. In 2021, the network will reach approximately 17,000 children at 30 sites across the country, in addition to 11,000 children in the program’s two flagship locations (6,000 children in the Greater Philadelphia Area and 5,000 children in 10 counties across North Carolina, in partnership with UNC Morehead Planetarium and Science Center).