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A powerful partnership of science for everyone

What do a global healthcare company, the world’s largest multidisciplinary science society, community-based organizations, and the K-12 educators have in common? Children—and a passion for creating the next generation of science leaders.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) implements and administers the GSK Science in the Summer™ program, in the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia. The four-day program draws elementary school-aged children from all backgrounds, including public and private school students and homeschoolers. It sparks and cultivates a newfound interest in science, including among traditionally underrepresented groups in STEM professions.

 “GSK, Science in the Summer and AAAS are doing amazing things for children,” said Betty Calinger, AAAS Education and Human Resources project director. “We’re not only inspiring a love of science in children at a very crucial age; we’re also investing in our future by empowering our children, regardless of their economic status or background, to succeed in an increasingly STEM-based job market.The program is free and is available to children in second through sixth grades.”

The program is supported by a unique partnership — a global healthcare company, the world’s largest multidisciplinary science society, community-based organizations like libraries and Boys & Girls Clubs, and the K-12 educators who deliver the curriculum. “That’s a pretty impressive force for good science for all,” Betty said. “We’re all equally invested in the success of our children, and equally committed to providing them with every opportunity for a 21st century STEM education. Our hope is that we plant seeds in these students that will flourish throughout their lives – first in the classroom, and then as a career. We’re honored to be educating the next generation of science leaders.”

The GSK Science in the Summer program, which is in its 31st year of operation, now reaches more than 25,000 kids across the country per year, and has nearly 200,000 alumni to date. The 2017 program focused on the Science of Sports – allowing kids to explore how their favorite sporting activities link to STEM.