IMLS Launches National Campaign to Promote 21st Century Skills and Community Engagement
June 16, 2010
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
IMLS Press Contacts
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Washington, DC—The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has announced a national campaign aimed at engaging museums, libraries, and civic leaders in meeting the 21st century learning needs of their communities.
The national campaign, Making the Learning Connection, is intended to help communities assess their needs and contribute to a shared vision for 21st century learning. It includes an eight-city workshop tour, a national contest, new online tools and resources, and a series of interactive webinars.
The eight-city tour kicks off on June 21 at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore. The tour will provide an opportunity for museum, library, and other community leaders to discuss the 21st century learning landscape of their city and explore strategies for furthering 21st century learning goals.
"Museums and libraries play a crucial role in helping learners of all generations develop necessary 21st century skills such as critical thinking and problem solving, creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration," said Marsha L. Semmel, IMLS acting director. "Libraries and museums are in touch with the challenges their communities face and uniquely positioned to create networks to support learning and positively impact a common future."
The Making the Learning Connection campaign is part of IMLS’s continuing initiative to engage libraries and museums, community stakeholders and policymakers to meet the educational, economic, civic, and cultural needs of communities. This campaign builds upon the release of Museums, Libraries and 21st Century Skills, which provides an online self-assessment for libraries and museums to encourage a strategic approach to 21st century learning and a report for library and museum practitioners and policymakers.
"We are thrilled to host the inaugural workshop in this important series that will help create 21st century skills action plans for communities across the country," said Gary Vikan, director of the Walters Art Museum. "In Baltimore, in order to have an engaged citizenry and competitive workforce, we must provide interesting, relevant, and engaging learning opportunities for individuals of all ages."
Workshop participants will leave each session with a better understanding of the role museums and libraries play in the learning landscape. Each workshop will end with a defined set of action steps to ensure museums, libraries, and community stakeholders continue to collaborate in order to meet the 21st century learning needs of their community.
In the coming months, IMLS will announce the other workshop tour stops, dates for webinars, and contest details.
About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit www.imls.gov.