May 23rd

Students Experience Science Centers and MIB3 with Will Smith Around the World

On May 24th,  the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH) and the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) are joining forces to provide a select audience of high school students with an inspiring educational experience in support of the Youth Inspired Challenge program, whose goals include increasing the science, technology, and mathematics (STEM) literacy of today’s students.
In partnership with ASTC, Sony Pictures and Academy Award-nominated actor Will Smith will join a group of nearly 300 local students for a sneak preview of the third installment of the popular Men In Black franchise. Following the movie premiere, Smith will visit the American Museum of Natural History for a question-and-answer session about the new film in a salute to programs that provide students with exposure to science learning outside of school. In advance of today’s program, Will Smith has met with the students participating in Youth Inspired Challenge programs at the Science Museum in London, La Palais – Universcience, in Paris, and Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales, in Madrid.
After Smith answers student questions, Museum Curator Mordecai-Mark Mac Low, an astrophysicist, will preview and take questions about the Museum’s spectacular Space Show Journey to the Stars, which will be screened for students in the Hayden Planetarium Space Theater.
The primary goals of the Youth Inspired Challenge include increasing the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) literacy of today’s students, and expanding opportunities for STEM engagement of underrepresented groups, including minorities and women. As a part of YIC, ASTC-member institutions were challenged to offer valuable science education and youth employment programs outside the classroom to engage at least 25,000 youth, ages 10-19, in a minimum of 2 million hours of science enrichment over a three-year period.Since the launch of the Challenge, ASTC and its member institutions are collecting, cataloguing, and sharing best practices for improving STEM education. To date, more than more than 100 science centers in 7 countries and 37 U.S. states joined the Challenge and have engaged nearly 14,000 youth in more than 700,000 hours of science enrichment activities—more than halfway toward achieving the Challenge’s impact goals.
“Science centers across the globe have a rich history of making science, technology, education, and math programs accessible to, and enjoyable for, youth around the world,” remarked Anthony (Bud) Rock, chief executive officer of ASTC. “The Youth Inspired Challenge program has had remarkable success reaching these children, and we are tremendously grateful to Sony and Will Smith for allowing participants from the American Museum of Natural History to experience the excitement of a movie premiere.”
Men In Black 3 opens worldwide May 25.

About ASTC

The Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) is a global nonprofit organization of science centers and museums committed to raising public understanding of science’s role in solving critical societal issues, and its value in igniting and nurturing the innovative spirit that people of all ages need for success in today’s world. Founded in 1973, ASTC now represents over 600 members in 45 countries, and its members include not only science centers and museums, but also nature centers, aquariums, planetariums, zoos, botanical gardens, and natural history and children’s museums, as well as companies, consultants, and other organizations that share an interest in informal science education.Visit to learn more about ASTC and to find a science center near you.

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