IMSS Receives Voya-funded Grant for STEM Activities Outreach During COVID-19

the International Museum of Surgical Science logo

Contact: Michelle Rinard
312-642-6502 ext. 3118

For immediate release:

International Museum of Surgical Science Wins Highly Competitive Grant to Support STEM Engagement During COVID-19 Pandemic

Chicago—The International Museum of Surgical Science is one of 20 science centers and museums around the country selected to receive $5,000 in support of STEM engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic from the Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) and made possible by the Voya Foundation.

This flexible program is designed to support science and technology centers and museums to continue to serve their missions and community by developing, enhancing, or adapting programs or resources, helping maintain STEM learning as children, families, and educators adapt to a new normal. Twenty institutions were selected to receive funding, from among 96 science centers and museums that submitted applications.

The International Museum of Surgical Science will use the award to develop a STEM-engagement program that includes downloadable education materials and do-at-home activities, designed for grades 6–8. The packet and associated activities explore core concepts on topics including pathology, patent medicines, cardiology, ophthalmology, anesthesia and medical imaging. Each activity highlights artifacts from the museum, including a photograph and inquiries for observation. The project extends the museum’s mission of enriching people’s lives by enhancing their appreciation and understanding of the history, development and advances in surgery and related subjects in health and medicine. These resources will be made available digitally, and for local families in need, the museum will provide kits of materials. The packet and resources will be available by the end of June on the Museum’s website at

“We are thankful for this opportunity to create new materials for our younger audience. Since being closed, we have been working on ways to further engage our community through online education. This STEM packet has been developed with our educators and interns to cater to a need in our community that will benefit those learning at home. These funds help our organization greatly during this uncertain time,” said Michelle Rinard, Operations Manager, International Museum of Surgical Science.

“We know the important role the International Museum of Surgical Science’s STEM program play in our communities because of the success of Voya STEM Futures, one of our signature programs,” said Angela Harrell, SVP, Chief Diversity and Corporate Responsibility Officer and President, Voya Foundation. “We’re proud that our rapid response to the COVID-19 pandemic can keep our children learning during this unprecedented time.”

“We are thankful that Voya recognized a need for continued exploration and learning opportunities—even when science centers and museums are closed—and stepped forward to help them keep doing what they do best,” said Cristin Dorgelo, President and CEO of ASTC. “Community-based organizations like the International Museum of Surgical Science are well-positioned to help meet the need for increased understanding of—and engagement with—science and technology among all people, which is needed now more than ever.”

Members of the public can further support the International Museum of Surgical Science’s STEM project by making a contribution at

About the International Museum of Surgical Science
The International Museum of Surgical Science (IMSS), a division of the International College of Surgeons, maintains over 10,000 square feet of public galleries committed to the history of surgery, and an exquisite permanent collection of art and artifacts from the history of medicine. The museum supports its mission through medically themed exhibitions and programs, in addition to a strong contemporary art exhibition program. IMSS is housed in a historic landmark mansion located at 1524 North Lake Shore Drive, one-half block south of North Avenue, in Chicago’s Gold Coast neighborhood. IMSS is open to visitors Monday through Friday 9:30AM – 5:00PM and Saturday and Sunday 10:00AM – 5:00PM. For more information visit

About Voya Foundation
Voya Foundation’s mission is to improve the quality of life in communities where Voya Financial operates and its employees and customers live. Voya Foundation provides grants and establishes signature partnerships in the areas of financial literacy and children’s education and fosters employee engagement to deepen our positive impact on the community. For more information, visit

About ASTC
Founded in 1973, ASTC is a network of nearly 700 science and technology centers and museums, and allied organizations, engaging more than 110 million people annually across North America and in almost 50 countries. With its members and partners, ASTC works towards a vision of increased understanding of—and engagement with—science and technology among all people.