Museum and Library Services Grant

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Fairchild Receives Institute of Museum and Library Services Grant

for Their Fairchild Challenge Program


Coral Gables, FL, October 1, 2012— The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) recently announced that Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden is one of nine organizations to receive 21st Century Museum Professionals grants totaling $1,968,346.

“By receiving this grants award, The Fairchild Challenge is being recognized for its innovation in STEM Education and as a model that will allow informal education organizations to make significant contributions to STEM literacy in the United States,” says Amy Padolf, Director of Education at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden.

With this funding, Fairchild will expand the successful Fairchild Challenge (FC) to additional national partner sites and provide intensive training for current partner sites. The FC is an innovative approach to STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education that identifies and encourages talented young scientists through a multidisciplinary approach and competition.

"These grants help museum professionals acquire, improve, and maintain their knowledge and skills," said IMLS Director Susan Hildreth. "The projects we‘re funding have impact and public value well beyond the nine grantees and their service areas."

About the Fairchild Challenge

The Fairchild Challenge is a multidisciplinary, environmental education outreach program for elementary, middle and high school students. Designed as a competition that appeals to students’ intellectual curiosity, the Fairchild Challenge encourages students to appreciate the beauty and value of nature and learn about environmental issues, to research possible solutions and evaluate them critically, to modify their own behavior and to become actively engaged citizens. The Fairchild Challenge currently involves more than 150,000 students internationally. Through its Satellite Program, institutions around the world are adapting the program to their communities. The Fairchild Challenge is offered free of charge to interested Elementary, middle and high schools. For more information, visit

About Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden

Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden is dedicated to exploring, explaining and conserving the world of tropical plants. Considered the greatest tropical botanic garden in the world, Fairchild exhibits some of the tropical world‘s rarest and most beautiful plants within the tapestry of an iconic landscape design. Fairchild is a one of the world‘s best science, conservation and education-based gardens and a recognized international leader in both Florida and international conservation. It has conservation programs in over 20 countries throughout the tropical world including the Indonesia, South America, the Caribbean, and Southeast Asia. Fairchild’s palm and cycad collections are considered the best collections in the world and are nationally recognized by the American Public Gardens Association. It is also home to the American Orchid Society. The Fairchild Challenge is the largest science-based education program in the U.S. reaching more than 150,000 schoolchildren. Fairchild hosts popular events like the Chocolate, Mango, Orchid, Food and Garden, Ramble and Edible Garden Festivals, as well as an internationally acclaimed Art Program, GardenMusic Festival, concerts, plant shows and sales, and evening events and is the cultural and community hub in South Florida. Fairchild is a not-for-profit organization with 45,000 members and over 1,200 volunteers. Fairchild is located at 10901 Old Cutler Road, Coral Gables, Florida, 33156. Admission is $25 for adults, $18 for seniors, $12 for children 6-17 and free to children 5 and under and Fairchild members. Information at and on Facebook and Twitter.