The Earth and Mineral Sciences Museum & Art Gallery’s (EMS Museum) strategic institutional plan is based upon consideration of the mission of the museum and the needs of the museum’s primary constituents—the students, faculty, staff, and alumni of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, as well as the university community as a whole, local K-12 students and teachers, and regional learners of all ages and backgrounds.
Within this document we have outlined five major goals comprised of incremental goals that we strive to fulfill during the five year timeline. The work required, parties responsible, resources required, timeframes proposed, and evaluation criteria related to fulfilling these goals are detailed in the accompanying document (Appendix) While the objectives of these goals are fixed, the methods and conditions to attain them may transition over time.
The goals of the EMS Museum Strategic Plan 2018-2023 are aligned with the goals outlined in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences (EMS) 2015-2019 Strategic Plan, “A blueprint for sustained excellence in the earth, energy, and material sciences and engineering”. The goals of the EMS strategic plan are aligned with the Pennsylvania State University’s overall leadership plans.
The creation of the EMS Museum strategic plan has been a joint effort between the EMS Museum staff and the EMS Museum Advisory Board. Members of the museum’s advisory board are reflective of the museum’s constituents. Board members are drawn from the faculty, staff, alumni, and students of EMS and the university, as well as local and regional educators, learners, and entrepreneurs. An initial draft plan was developed by the director of the museum and subsequently reviewed by the advisory board and museum staff. A strategic plan task force comprised of three advisory board members and two museum staff was then established to develop a second draft. The second draft was presented to the entire board for discussion. Based on the discussion points and consequent suggestions for revisions, the museum director drafted a third version of the plan. After presentation to the Advisory Board, the third draft was accepted as the basis for this Strategic Plan. The strategic plan task force reconvened to develop action plans that will lead to the accomplishment of the goals outlined in the Strategic Plan. These plans were reviewed by the entire board and museum staff and additional comments and suggestions were incorporated into the current document. This current document has been submitted to the EMS Museum Advisory Board for approval. The board has voted unanimously to accept the Strategic Plan and work towards its implementation. The plan has also been approved by the Governing Authority, Dean of the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences.
The EMS Museum Strategic Plan document and appendix include:
- Goals that are aligned with EMS College goals
- Action steps (specific assignments to achieve these goals)
- Assignment of responsibility for accomplishing action steps
- Assessment of resources (human and financial) required for implement
- How the institution will obtain these resources
- Priorities (ranked I-V with I being the highest priority)
- Evaluation mechanisms and measures of success
The EMS Museum & Art Gallery strives to be a premiere (“go to”) institution providing informed educational and technical resources for science, art, and history of the earth and mineral sciences in the state of Pennsylvania. This strategic plan will facilitate achievement of this goal in many ways.
First, achievement will be, in part, the result of “preservation, utilization, and promotion of our diverse collections,” as stated in the Mission Statement. The EMS Museum & Art Gallery has already made great strides in the preservation and conservation of our Steidle Collection of American Industrial Art by obtaining specialized art storage equipment and facilities and establishing a maintenance endowment for the art collection. This institutional strategic plan outlines how similar results will be achieved for upgrading the storage facilities, access, and management protocols for the museum’s other key collections (geological and historic mining artifacts).
Second, the long-range exhibit plan, as stated here, focuses on prescient issues (e.g., climate change, ground water resources, sustainability, natural hazards, etc.) facing our state as well as the rest of the world. The Earth and Mineral Sciences College at the Pennsylvania State University contains internationally recognized researchers in all of these areas. Presenting the research of the college in informal science education is one of the primary roles of the EMS Museum & Art Gallery. Furthermore, by informing the citizens of the communities we serve of these issues, we will enhance their ability to make more knowledgeable decisions about their future. Exhibits will be reinforced by information presented in differing program venues as described in this plan. A creative website design will make information available to anyone at any time world-wide. The museum has always been dedicated to continued learning and again many of the innovative ideas in this plan will move us to a higher platform. This plan also includes measures to increase the financial stability of the institution by primarily building endowments for the future.
Goals, Alignment, and Priorities
EMS Museum Goal I: To preserve and conserve the EMS Museum & Art Gallery’s diverse collections using sustainable concepts, methods, and materials when feasible
Alignment: EMS College Goal 1: Build on the college’s reputation for scientific leadership in the earth, energy and materials sciences and engineering and EMS College Goal 6: Incorporate sustainability thinking into all aspects of EMS
IA Revise and update the EMS Museum & Art Gallery’s core documents for Accreditation
IB Meet objectives, other than core documents for accreditation as stipulated by the AAM (American Alliance of Museums)
IC Apply to the AAM for accreditation
ID Upgrade rock and mineral collection storage facilities with controlled environmental conditions as well as acquire new storage furniture (e.g., cabinetry and shelves)
IE Upgrade methods and environments of exhibition (acquire new exhibit cases for “Science Gallery”) to ensure collections preservation and safety (e.g., cabinets, lighting, security, environmental monitors, etc.)
IF Continue research, evaluation and restoration of the art collection
IG Organize and inventory mining lamp collection with the ultimate goal of publishing a catalogue
EMS Museum Goal II: To inform students, faculty, staff, and the general public about the scientific process featuring scientific research conducted in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences through changing exhibits and programs that are current, informative, exciting and illustrating sustainable practices and principles
Alignment: EMS College Goal 2: Provide seamless access for all EMS students to an EMS education that is driven by learner needs, regardless of location or situation – become One College, Geographically Distributed and EMS College Goal 6: Incorporate sustainability thinking into all aspects of EMS
II Develop a long range exhibits plan that incorporates diversity within EMS and application of the scientific method with exhibits that are current, informative and exciting and that are changed on a regular basis to ensure novelty in the museum
January 2018—Maps: Risks, Resources, & Relief with the EMS Library
September 2018— Women in Science & Art with Bearded Ladies (traveling exhibit)
September 2019—Sustainability at PSU
September 2020—Natural Hazards
September 2021—Water: Essential for Life
September 2022—Climate Change & Native Cultures
September 2023—Heinz Foundation Exhibit of Steidle Industrial Art (Traveling Exhibit developed by EMS Museum & Art Gallery)
EMS Museum Goal III: To encourage ALL students to consider science and engineering as career choices, especially in the EMS disciplines, and to recruit a diverse and varied student body for the EMS College
Alignment: EMS College Goal 3: Invest in recruiting and retaining talented diverse students into EMS graduate programs and facilitate their career development
IIIA Develop an improved Web presence highlighting current information about the collections, exhibits and educational programming
IIIB Involve a wide diversity of students in design and preparation of exhibits and museum programs
EMS Museum Goal IV: To foster lifelong interest in science and art, emphasizing their interconnection
IVA Conduct hands-on science workshops and collaborate with other educational organizations on campus and throughout PA
IVB Work with the news media and utilize emerging communication technologies to inform the public about opportunities at the EMS Museum & Art Gallery.
EMS Museum Goal V: Ensure financial security for the EMS Museum & Art Gallery
Alignment: EMS College Goal 4: Continue to develop alternative revenue streams that help sustain the college’s excellence, especially in the area of philanthropic fundraising
VA Partner with Development to establish a strong museum Friends organization
VB Develop an annual fund raising strategy
VC Continue to develop endowments to support mineral and rock collections care