NASA Expands Informal Learning Institutions Engaging Next Generation of Explorers

The Franklin Institute hosts a star gazing party for students.

NASA’s Teams Engaging Affiliated Museums and Informal Institutions (TEAM II) program has selected three additional informal education organizations to promote learning in STEM to inspire the next generation of explorers. The three organizations supplement an initial group selected in December 2019. The selected projects provide students with opportunities to engage in science, technology, engineering, and math behind NASA’s Moon to Mars exploration and aim to reach populations that are historically underrepresented in STEM professions.

The selected organizations will implement their proposals over the next three years, as a part of NASA’s Museum and Informal Education Alliance — a nationwide network of informal education professionals at more than 1,000 science museums, planetariums, NASA visitor centers, Challenger Centers, youth-serving organizations, camps, and libraries, as well as visitor centers at observatories and parks, nature centers, aquariums, and zoos.

The projects will provide authentic mission-driven STEM learning experiences via hands-on and virtual toolkits, a traveling exhibit, and community-focused professional development. In total, approximately $3 million will be awarded through cooperative agreements, which provide additional opportunities for interaction between recipients and NASA beyond the grants previously awarded through TEAM II.

The newly selected institutions and their projects are:

Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colorado
From Our Town to the Moon, Mars, and Beyond

The Sciencenter, Ithaca, New York
Explore Science:  Destination Moon

The Franklin Institute, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Mission to Mars:  Boosting Community Engagement with NASA Resources

For more information on NASA’s STEM Engagement programs, visit