By CHARMIAN SCHALLER
Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos
Andy Trottier, president of the Bradbury Science Museum Association, spoke to Kiwanis recently, explaining the goals and plans of this relatively new organization.
Trottier, a member of Kiwanis, has "retired" several times--after 32 years in the military, after serving as principal of Los Alamos Middle School (in 1997), and as security advisor to the director of Los Alamos National Laboratory (in 2015). Now he has some new goals to pursue.
He and KayLinda Crawford, secretary of the association, passed out to Kiwanis members a handout that said the association's mission is "to support and inspire learners of all ages in Northern New Mexico and beyond through STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education." The association's goals, one handout said, are:
- "(to) operate a museum store to support STEM education;
- "(to) provide volunteer opportunities to expand museum outreach;
- "(and to) build support for the museum mission through members and donors."
Another handout said, "The Bradbury Science Museum is the window into the past and future of Los Alamos National Laboratory, and the Bradbury Science Museum Association hopes to provide every student in Northern New Mexico the chance to experience the museum through field trips and workshops."
Trottier said LANL has never before had an organization like this for the Bradbury, and as it stands now, "Many school children are unable to get here. We need to find ways to show them how LANL and the Bradbury have built STEM." He said the laboratory supports the goals of the association and has provided a memo of understanding for its work, and the LANL director "has made clear the importance of engaging young people in what we do here."
Field trips and workshops at the Bradbury can lead to a better understanding of science, and subsequent STEM education can eventually lead to good jobs at the laboratory.
Right now, the association needs members, donations, volunteers, and business partnerships, Trottier said.
The association store at the museum will open (first as a kiosk and later as a full-scale store within the museum) on Dec. 2, 2016. It will make use of volunteer staffers.
Membership in the association, which is tax deductible, can range in price from $35 for a student or faculty member, to $75 for an entire family (including all children in the family who are under age 18). "Partnerships" can range from $500 for a business contributor up to $5,000 for a business leader.
Interested people can sponsor museum activities (such events as Family Science Night) and field trips for schools in Northern New Mexico (which cost about $600 per busload).
Interested? Trottier invited Kiwanis members and others to visit the museum (which regularly changes its exhibits), talk to staff members and association members, or read the association website at www.bradburyassociation.org , for full details.
He and Crawford confirmed that there will be small items on sale as of Dec. 2 that might be appropriate for holiday gifts—items such as mugs, pins, and shirts. Later, they said, there will be calendars and magnets with the Bradbury logo, and the store's inventory will continue to grow.
They urged supporters to consider donating, since "our survival is based on donations."
Trottier said about 82,000 people per year now visit the museum. He wants to make sure that all possible school children in Northern New Mexico are part of an eventual, much larger, total attendance--for their own sake and for the laboratory.