Dale McCreedy, The Franklin Institute

Since the late 1980s, Dale McCreedy has led the development of national programs that demonstrate how science museums can help girls and adults become confident, capable science learners and facilitators. As project director for two NSF grants, the National Science Partnership for Girl Scouts and Science Museums (NSP/1992–1996) and Girls At the Center (GAC/1996–2001), McCreedy established a sustained collaboration with the Girl Scouts of the USA. This collaboration, in turn, created a national network of science museum/Girl Scout council partnerships in 48 states to promote gender-based science learning and family support for girls’ science learning. Participants are part of a research initiative begun in 2005 that is looking at the impact of these programs on girls’ futures. Girls At the Center encouraged family involvement in girls’ science learning, was implemented nationally through the publication Girls and Adults Learning SCIENCE Together in 2002, and led to a new initiative that expanded expertise in intergenerational science learning strategies to a broader, school-based, co-ed audience called Parent Partners in School Science (PPSS/2001–2005). This multi-year collaboration with three Philadelphia elementary schools developed a promising model to cultivate collaboration between parents and teachers as they help students learn science in school and at home. Currently, McCreedy is project director for an additional NSF-funded program called LEAP into Science: A National Museum/Library Collaboration (2007–2012). This model partnership promotes family and after-school student engagement and achievement in science and literacy. McCreedy was the 2002 winner of the Maria Mitchell Award for Women in Science and is the current president of the Visitor Studies Association.