The Education team was excited to take a field trip to Washington DC to be part of the Smithsonian Education Innovation Awards. Although, we often travel for individual programs, this was one of those rare chances where the whole team got to travel together. After a short flight and a nice celebratory lunch, we headed to the Smithsonian Castle!

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Secretary Wayne Clough of the Smithsonian Institution and Claudine Brown, Director of Education for Smithsonian Institution awarded the Education team the Smithsonian Education Innovation Award for our continued excellence in design programming while our museum has been under renovation. Throughout the renovation process, we have been working hard to reach underserved audiences through the Design in the Classroom program and the Design Center in Harlem, New York with programs for teens, families and adults.

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Aaron Cromwell, Research Anthropologist and Alaska Director of the Arctic Studies Center, National Museum of Natural History and the ARTLAB+ at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden lead by Ryan Hill were also awarded this prestigious award.

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The day culminated with some time to explore some of the other Smithsonian museums in the area. I, of course, ended up in the National Air and Space Museum, my favorite museum from childhood. My love for learning and museums has only been fostered by my early childhood interaction in many of these magnificent places.

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I am proud to be a part of this institution and even more delighted to view the world through the lens of design. As a member of the Cooper-Hewitt family, I must say that I work with a group of very dedicated individuals who have inspired me to be a bigger visionary in the museum world.

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