Why the Brazos Valley?

The Brazos Valley is home to Texas A&M University, a world renowned research University with outstanding science and engineering programs and is a leader in developing and finding practical applications for new technologies.

The addition to the Brazos Valley of a research museum would promote multi-disciplinary research and provide a center to enhance science literacy for the general public.

Adult and K-12 Education

Museums make significant contributions to public education about complex inventions, history, science, culture, and art. A research museum of science and history, showcasing a magnificent shuttle orbiter, would set new standards for public education of science and history.

The Brazos Valley is a central location, potentially serving 15 million Texas citizens, with approximately 5 million under the age of 18. The United States has lost its competitive edge in math and science education, and the informal education offered by museums is critical in increasing the scientific literacy of our citizens.

Economic Development and Job Creation

A project of this magnitude creates jobs and opportunities for thousands of people. American Association of Museum studies indicate that American Museums spend approximately $5.7 billion annually on such core activities as educational programming, exhibits, collections care, and research. This includes a $1 billion investment to care for the more than 750 million objects and living specimens in museum collections, entrusted to them for the public.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services found that museums annually spend more than $1 billion to provide over 18 million instructional hours for educational programs such as professional development for teachers, guided field trips, staff visits to schools, and traveling exhibits in schools. These activities bring in millions of dollars to the local economy.

With increased tourism, travel and opportunity, one could foresee expansion of Easterwood Airport with more routes and increased direct access to large cities. Ultimately, this entire project is expected to create 1,000 to 1,500 new jobs.

Preservation and Display of Specimens and Artifacts

Currently, Texas A&M University houses world class collections in natural and cultural history that are inaccessible to the public. Discussions are underway concerning a potential partnership with Texas A&M to house these collections under one roof. Ultimately, this partnership would provide accompanying exhibits for the general public, increase public support for Texas A&M collection based research, ensure the preservation of irreplaceable specimens and artifacts, stimulate additional research, and provide the Brazos Valley and Texas A&M University with a world class Museum.

Community Enhancement

The new Museum of Science and History would fill an important need in the Brazos Valley. The museum could become an outstanding community center and a paragon of continuing public science and history education. There is general public support for the addition of a history and science museum, and the University has a large base of interested alumni. A museum would provide Texas A&M University faculty with the perfect vehicle to conduct public outreach, and enhance the community's partnership with the University.

 

Shuttle images courtesy of NASA.