The Sciences

STEM Organizations Are Powering Discovery With the Science Near Me Exchange

The Exchange brings the power of Science Near Me’s Opportunity Finder to local organizations across the country.

Science Near MeBy Science Near MeJan 19, 2023 9:30 PM
Family at STEM festival Royalty Free
A family attends a STEM festival.

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The Science Near Me blog is a partnership between Discover magazine and ScienceNearMe.org.

Science Near Me is a one-stop website for all kinds of opportunities to explore science and learn new things in your area. With just a few clicks, you can find activities perfect for kids, adults, families and more from organizations in your own community.

We partner with many science organizations around the country, like museums, discovery centers and science festivals to bring you the best opportunities for science. And now, a new feature is making exploring the science around you even easier. With our new online, customizable Exchange, the local and community organizations we work with can take Science Near Me’s custom Opportunity Finder and adapt it on their own websites to highlight the activities happening in their own backyards. And the analytics the Exchange provides offer new insights for partners to tailor future opportunities in their areas.

Parters like the Alabama STEM Council now have the Science Near Me search tool built right into their own websites, filled with opportunities from their areas. Scrolling through the easy-to-use application on their STEM Near Me page, you’ll find awesome science events like free STEM Field Trips from nonprofit Southern Research, science enrichment activities for kids K-8 from STEM for Huntsville Youth and citizen science projects to catalog the biodiversity of Alabama from the Alabama Museum of Natural History.

The STEM Near Me Exchange on the Alabama Stem Council website.

“The real goal is to connect Alabamians with STEM learning opportunities not just at the state level, but at the local level,” says Lawrence Cooper, the STEM Program Manager for the Alabama STEM Council.

Adding an Exchange is easy, and open to any STEM organization, and they come with opportunities to customize the interface for any website. Organizations can also add an optional “Add Opportunity” feature so local organizations can add their own events at any time. And the Exchange gathers analytics on interactions that you can use to improve their own outreach efforts.

Cooper says the Alabama STEM Council sees the Exchange as not only an important tool to get Alabamians interested in science, but as a way of fostering a broader STEM ecosystem for the state.

To that end, Science Near Me includes a suite of data analytics tools for Exchange providers to help them see how people interact with opportunities in the Exchange. Organizations can view the landscape of opportunities, see where participants are exploring from and what patterns of user engagement emerge. That lets STEM organizations see where geographic or topical gaps might be, and find ideas for collaborations between existing events and programs to strengthen the STEM ecosystem in their area overall.

“It’s not just a calendar of events, it becomes a living, breathing directory to communicate with different stakeholders across our state,” he says.

Interested in adding a Partner Exchange to your site to feature STEM in your area and become a local or regional hub for for people to easily find ways to engage in science? Reach out to the Science Near Me team today!

Science Events From Our Partners

Multiple Science Near Me partners have already set up their own Exchanges, each featuring events and activities unique to their own region or focus. For example, the website for the Wisconsin Science Festival, held each October, is featuring projects like IceWatch USA and the Wisconsin Rare Plant Monitoring Program that let the science-curious explore their state all year round.

The STEM Exchange on the Nation of Makers website.

At Nation of Makers, you can find hands-on engineering and computer science programs from EiE at the Boston Museum of Science, monthly tech workshops and mentoring for girls and gender-expansive youth from ChickTech and workshops creating light pollution monitoring circuits from the North Caroline STEM Center. And the Maine Discovery Museum’s Science Around Me Exchange includes opportunities like Nature Time at the museum.

Find Activities For You and Your Family With Science Near Me

The Exchange is powered by the Science Near Me Opportunity Finder and the wealth of opportunities it contains to engage with science in local communities all across the country. There are countless ways to get involved with science no matter where you are, and thanks to partner organizations tapped into their region’s STEM ecosystem, we’re able to give you information on all of them.

Finding fun and educational things to do starts with the Opportunity Finder on the Science Near Me homepage, where you can search by location, timeframe, cost, age and more to find activities perfect for you. If you make an account with Science Near Me, you’ll get access to even more personalized opportunities, as well as the ability to save things you like for later.

That includes online activities like Virtual Herbarium Expeditions from the New York Botanical Garden, monthly scientist talks and science quizzes from the Homewood-Flossmoor Science Pub and planetarium shows at Florida’s Hallstrom Planetarium.

Science Near Me is always adding new events and opportunities for STEM engagement. No matter where you are, there’s something for you. Get searching!

If your organization offers events, projects or programs that invite the public to engage in STEM, add it to Science Near Me!

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