Saint Paul, Minn. — The Science Museum of Minnesota is pleased to announce 2018 as the “Year of the Engineer,” presented by 3M, and its big plans to celebrate creativity and ingenuity throughout the year. The Science Museum’s goal is to provide engineering-related experiences to more than one million people — reaching all 87 Minnesota counties — throughout the year.
The Science Museum is responding to a need — both globally and locally — for strong engineering talent. Over the past 10 years in Minnesota, growth in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) jobs has been three times greater than the growth of non-STEM jobs. Scientific and technical occupations are expected to increase up to 33 percent in the next 10 years, and 18 out of the 20 fastest growing occupations will be tied to STEM disciplines.
“The Science Museum of Minnesota has woven engineering activities — and the creativity, inventiveness, and persistence inherent in them — into its programming for years,” said Science Museum president and CEO Alison Rempel Brown. “With the support of our community and business partners, we are thrilled to celebrate the Year of the Engineer in 2018 and give this wonderful career path the spotlight it deserves.”
Events related to the Year of the Engineer include the following, with more to be announced throughout the year:
- Omnitheater films “Dream Big: Engineering Our World” and “Living in the Age of Airplanes”
- Featured exhibits, including Towers of Tomorrow with LEGO Bricks, a cardboard engineering gallery, an interactive exhibit on biomechanics called “The Machine Inside,” and an experiential building exhibit called Keva Planks
- Special events, including “Play. Tinker. Make. Engineer.” on every Saturday throughout the year, which will include hands-on activities for kids such as building earthquake-resistant high rises
- Engineering-themed assemblies at schools throughout the state, presented by the Science Museum team
“Now more than ever before the world needs dynamic, dedicated and diverse engineers to solve growing and evolving social issues,” said Michael Stroik, director of 3Mgives. “We thank the Science Museum of Minnesota for inspiring the next generation of engineers — and in many cases we hope — our next generation of 3Mers improving lives globally.”
To recognize the importance of engineering for the state’s economy and the Science Museum’s dedication to engineering, Governor Dayton has formally declared Thursday, January 18, as the Science Museum of Minnesota’s Year of the Engineer Kick-Off Day in the state of Minnesota. Senator Amy Klobuchar also has a special message to share with Minnesota regarding the Year of the Engineer, which is available in a video here.
Of the growing need for engineering-based careers, Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development Shawntera Hardy said, “Minnesota is known for strong investment and the prioritization of STEM education. Programs like this allow us to encourage Minnesotans to cherish engineering as a necessity for our future.”
“The demand for STEM-based jobs is accelerating at a rapid pace and we must be prepared to meet it with a qualified workforce,” added Hardy. “The Science Museum’s Year of the Engineer will help spark imagination, foster creativity, and introduce STEM concepts to more Minnesotans.”
About the Science Museum of Minnesota
The Science Museum of Minnesota is one of the state’s oldest and best-known cultural institutions, with a history dating back to 1907. The museum serves hundreds of thousands of people each year with a combination of cutting-edge technology, high-tech entertainment, and a world-class collection of fossils and artifacts spanning billions of years of the earth’s history. The Science Museum uses fun, innovative programs to help break down barriers in education and help everyone realize that they can be a scientist. The Science Museum of Minnesota consistently places first in Twin Cities rankings for favorite museums, favorite family outings, and best date nights. For more information, visit smm.org.