Genzyme Gives $2 Million Gift to Museum of Science
Creates Biotechnology Education Initiative to Showcase Advances in Life Sciences
The Museum of Science, Boston announced today a $2 million gift from Genzyme Corporation (Nasdaq: GENZ) - the largest single corporate gift in the Museum’s 175 years-that will create the Genzyme Biotechnology Education Initiative. The contribution from the Cambridge-based biotechnology company represents the largest philanthropic gift in its 25-year history and marks the first major philanthropic commitment to the Museum’s new life sciences initiative.
The Genzyme Biotechnology Education Initiative will support a wide range of programs to educate Museum visitors of all ages about the rapid discoveries in biotechnology and how these advances affect their daily lives. These programs will include interactive exhibits and educational forums, professional development workshops for teachers, presentations for school groups, lectures, web-based resources, K-12 science and technology curricula, and other programs.
“We have always valued our longstanding relationship with the Museum of Science and this gift is in keeping with our mutual commitments to promote and support science education locally and globally,” says Henri A. Termeer, chairman and chief executive officer of Genzyme Corporation and Museum Trustee. “The Genzyme Biotechnology Education Initiative is an opportunity to provide adults and children with a base of understanding about biotechnology and its efforts to advance health care.”
“We are grateful not only for Genzyme’s generous financial support, but also for the opportunity to collaborate with Genzyme scientists to develop compelling programs and exhibits on the science and technology of human life,” says Ioannis Miaoulis, president and director, Museum of Science. “No topic touches people as personally or profoundly as this one. We all wonder about the possibilities for health and longevity that new medical technologies offer. Our life sciences initiative will help the public think about the implications of advances in genetics and biotechnology and their potential to enhance our lives.”
A Model of Corporate Commitment
The establishment of the Genzyme Biotechnology Education Initiative is a new milestone in Genzyme’s 15-year support of the Museum, taking the company’s partnership with the Museum to a new level. Building on Genzyme’s leadership in promoting science education, the Genzyme Biotechnology Education Initiative will encourage the next generation of scientists and educators by supporting the Museum’s life sciences initiative, with programming for students, teachers, and the public.
The Genzyme initiative will support programs including the creation of a new exhibition area, the “Hall of Human Life,” to be launched in 2009, which will transform the Museum’s human body exhibits and showcase the latest research on human biology. It will also support the development of a new bioengineering curriculum and teacher training tools for middle schools within the Museum’s new National Center for Technological Literacy. In addition to the $2 million gift, the company provides continuing support for the Genzyme - Museum of Science Teacher Sabbatical Program. Since 1997, this model program has enabled educators from Boston, Framingham, Cambridge, and other communities to step out of their classrooms and become students at the Museum for five days.
Genzyme’s Commitment to Science Education
Genzyme’s global science education initiatives include support for teacher development, after-school programs, scholarships and internships, and general literacy. In 2004, Genzyme introduced the first National Teacher-Leader Biotech Educator Award given by the Biotechnology Institute with a five-year, $337,500 commitment to leading teachers in biotechnology. Since late 2003, Genzyme has committed $250,000 to the MassBioEd Foundation to help outfit every high school in Massachusetts with biotechnology and laboratory equipment and supplies, teacher certification and training, and workforce development activities.
Museum’s Life Sciences Offerings
Building on its 175-year-old commitment to the natural and life sciences, the Museum is also hosting several related temporary exhibits over the next two years, including Gunther von Hagens’ BODY WORLDS 2: The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies, offering an unprecedented look at human anatomy and health; Darwin, an exhibition organized by the American Museum of Natural History with other institutions including the Museum of Science, promoting understanding of evolution and its impact on science; and a traveling exhibit on wildlife researcher Jane Goodall. The life sciences initiative reflects the Museum’s historic focus on science thinking skills as well as its emphasis on technological literacy-the attitudes, knowledge, and skills needed to use, understand, and think critically about the technologies shaping our lives and our world.
About Genzyme Corporation
One of the world’s leading biotechnology companies, Genzyme is dedicated to making a major positive impact on the lives of people with serious diseases. This year marks the 25th anniversary of Genzyme’s founding. Since 1981, the company has grown from a small start-up to a diversified enterprise with more than 8,000 employees in locations spanning the globe and 2005 revenues of $2.7 billion. Genzyme has been selected by FORTUNE as one of the “100 Best Companies to Work for” in the United States. With many established products and services helping patients in more than 80 countries, Genzyme is a leader in the effort to develop and apply the most advanced technologies in the life sciences. The company’s products and services are focused on rare inherited disorders, kidney disease, orthopaedics, cancer, transplant and immune diseases, and diagnostic testing. Genzyme’s commitment to innovation continues today with a substantial development program focused on these fields, as well as heart disease and other areas of unmet medical need. For more information, visit www.genzyme.com.
About the Museum of Science, Boston
One of the world’s largest science centers, the Museum of Science takes a hands-on approach to science, engineering, and technology, attracting over 1.4 million visitors a year through its vibrant programs and over 550 interactive exhibits. Founded in 1830, the Museum was first to embrace all the sciences under one roof. The Museum is ranked one of the top two science museums in the United States in the Zagat Survey’s “U.S. Family Travel Guide.” Highlights include the Thomson Theater of Electricity; the Charles Hayden Planetarium; the 180-degree domed Mugar Omni Theater; the Current Science & Technology Center; 3-D Digital Cinema; and Butterfly Garden. In 2004, the Museum launched the National Center for Technological Literacy (NCTL) to integrate engineering as a new discipline in schools nationwide and to inspire the next generation of engineers and innovators. In addition to serving as the headquarters for the Intel Computer Clubhouse serving 25,000 teens worldwide, the Museum is the lead partner in a 17-museum, $20 million nanotechnology initiative. The Museum’s “Science Is an Activity” exhibit plan has been awarded many National Science Foundation grants and influenced science centers worldwide. For more information, visit www.mos.org.
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