KANSAS CITY, Missouri — After a decadelong partnership including one of the nation’s most robust competitions promoting STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), Science City and Burns & McDonnell are making a vow for the future: Science City Powered by Burns & McDonnell.
“It’s extremely unique for a science center to partner with a private business to share their passion. And it’s ultimately rewarding to be in a partnership that’s making such an impact on its city,” says George Guastello, president and CEO, Union Station. “Our partnership with Burns & McDonnell has led to four student-inspired, million-dollar exhibits, grown attendance by 120 percent and, most importantly, deepened our engagement with area educators, students and families. As Science City approaches 20 years of service to Kansas City and has been recognized internationally, we’re poised to now create a future bigger and more impactful than ever thought possible.”
Hundreds of Kansas City area teachers, students, and civic and business leaders gathered at Science City for “Our Big Fun Geek Wedding Reception,” where guests were immersed in a whimsical science theme. With a backdrop of indoor fireworks and a massive balloon drop, test tubes full of bubbly were raised to toast the multimillion-dollar, multiyear union that benefits the entire Kansas City region.
“This is more than lending our name to Science City. This is our commitment to invest in and sustain our city’s science center that is so successful,” says Ray Kowalik, chairman and CEO, Burns & McDonnell. “Through this partnership, we will share our STEM professionals, our insights and our unwavering efforts to support STEM education in Kansas City. Our mission is to continue to spark an interest in STEM for students and lead them on a path to STEM careers that will change our community and the world.”
Burns & McDonnell will invest $2.5-3 million over the next five years, bringing the total investment over the last decade to an excess of $8 million. While new initiatives and programming will continuously be developed, Kowalik and Guastello revealed the first phase of exciting offerings:
- Public Celebration: On Sunday, Oct. 28 from noon to 5 p.m., reduced admission to Science City will be offered at the value of pi: $3.14 (limited to the first 2,000 guests).
- Burns & McDonnell Battle of the Brains: Commitment for two more K-12 STEM competitions, with each to result in a $1 million permanent exhibit inspired by area students.
- Field Trip and Transportation Fund: For an entire school year, Burns & McDonnell will award one field trip per week for a class to experience Science City.
- Pop-Up Series: Burns & McDonnell and Science City STEM professionals will be on-site to present insightful talks and demos for students.
- Summer Camp: STEM professionals from Burns & McDonnell will enrich Science City’s summer camp with industry trends and innovations and share tips and insights regarding careers in STEM.
- Internship: A Burns & McDonnell Battle of the Brains participant will be offered an internship to work at Burns & McDonnell or Science City.
“This is a huge step forward for our region,” says Missouri Governor Mike Parson, who recently championed a STEM bill through the legislature designed to strengthen STEM education in the state. “Schools are just part of the equation. Nonprofit-private partnerships, like Science City Powered by Burns & McDonnell, are an excellent solution to light a fire for STEM education in our state that will benefit our schools, our businesses and our economy.”
About Burns & McDonnell
Burns & McDonnell is a family of companies made up of more than 6,000 engineers, architects, construction professionals, scientists, consultants and entrepreneurs with offices across the country and throughout the world. We strive to create amazing success for our clients and amazing careers for our employee-owners. Burns & McDonnell is 100 percent employee-owned and is proud to be on Fortune’s 2018 list of 100 Best Companies to Work For.
About Science City
Internationally awarded for “Visitor Experience” by ASTC and regionally voted “Favorite Family Friendly Attraction” by Visit KC Visitors Choice Awards, Science City is named one of the country’s TOP 25 science centers. Annually, it educates and entertains hundreds of thousands of science-thirsty children of all ages. Kansas City’s Science Center is THE place for inquisitive young minds to create, explore, and experiment with the BIG world of science through hands-on learning and non-stop fun. Featuring over 200 interactive exhibits and host to countless STEM-based events -- including the annual Greater Kansas City Science & Engineering Fair -- Science City leads the region in recognition from educators, parents, caregivers AND children alike. Continually evolving and always inventing new ways to make science meaningful and fun, Science City has become THE regional destination for families, groups, special events and even “Science City On The Road” outreach. Union Station Members enjoy Science City visits free of charge. To learn more, please visit ScienceCity.com.