Working together is not only better – it’s essential. And at The Tech Museum, we’ve made outreach to community partners a priority.
In fact, we’ve infused the practice into our DNA through one of our Core Values
: Valuing the Local Community. We’re committed to being involved with what’s going on outside our front door – giving back to our community as well as inviting our neighbors into our home. Small wonder, then, that we’re taking full advantage of new and longstanding relationships in our quest to improve our community, maximize resources for learning, address current challenges and expose visitors to cultural events.
Among the examples:
VivaFest!, the popular San Jose Mariachi and Mexican Heritage Festival, takes center stage once again at The Tech Museum. For many days in September, the museum will be the premier platform for the rich range of cultural experiences of Mexican-Americans and Mexico during the largest celebration in the USA. The festival is the cornerstone of the Mexican Heritage Corporation's programming, which also features year-round music and dance education in local schools, museums and community centers. The festival is a family-oriented event of music, film, arts and educational events, drawing more than 50,000 people to the heart of Silicon Valley. An eclectic series of films showcasing the work of independent Latino and Mexican-American filmmakers will launch the week-long ¡VivaFest from Saturday, September 8 - 30. Screenings will take place The Hackworth IMAX® Dome Theater at The Tech Museum. Series highlights include Like Water for Chocolate and a screening and panel discussion of the documentary Tijuana Jews with Hollywood director/producer Isaac Artenstein (A Day Without A Mexican) and festival veteran Michael Ronstadt and Ronstadt Generations. As part of the annual celebration, the museum will also host Mexican music and dance workshops. For more information, click here.
ZERO1, the biennial celebration of the creative fusion of contemporary art and technology, this year features a dynamic network of more than 100 exhibitions, performances, public art projects and panels that will spread from Silicon Valley throughout the Bay Area and beyond from September 12 through December 8. In partnership with the celebration, the museum will unveil a newly commissioned art installation which will become part of the permanent content in The Tech Silicon Valley Innovation Gallery. The new art installation, Resolution, is meant to illustrate how technology invites exploration, play and social interaction. Using dynamic light compositions from magnetic pixels, visitors will be encouraged to touch and manipulate the exhibit to create original arrangements. The ZERO1 art street crawl will transform the city’s streets into an artsy street bazaar, overflowing with artists, dancers, engineers and art-aficionados. And The Tech Museum is one of the stops on the route. For more information on ZERO1, click here.
Come fall, Robert F. Kennedy Elementary School students will be the beneficiary of a science, technology, engineering, math (STEM) concentration, the core of which is designed by the first-ever partnership between the school district, Hitachi Data Systems, Wyse Technology, CORAL After-School Program of Catholic Charities of Santa Clara and The Tech Museum. The school has been similarly renamed Robert F. Kennedy School: A STEM Focus School to reflect the curriculum change. The aggressive plan to immerse the school’s nearly 700 students in science-technology education includes the museum’s commitment to provide all students two visits per year to The Tech Museum (including transportation); The museum will also provide on-campus activities twice per year and offer teacher training on how to use design-challenge learning (link to the explanation of this) activities in class. For more on the partnership.
More recently, the museum was able to showcase nearly two dozen projects from Maker Faire 2012, thanks to a burgeoning partnership. The popular-do-it-yourself technology treasure trove celebrates the spirit of creativity and invention. This exhibition marked the first such showcase for any museum in the country since Maker Faire’s 2006 debut. Read about it here.
Hands-on interactive exhibits explore genetics with our partners from the Department of Genetics at Stanford University and visitors can venture into space with our NASA exhibits. For more information on these and other galleries, click here.
The museum has also partnered with a widely diverse range of community organizations such as American Red Cross – Silicon Valley Chapter, Juneteenth Festival, Asian American Donor Program, Hack the Future, among others.