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Advancing the MRS Mission through the Materials Research Society Foundation

www.mrs.org/foundation

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 July 2014

Tia Benson Tolle*
Affiliation:
2014 MRS President

Abstract

Type
Other
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2014 

The Materials Research Society mission calls on us to promote interdisciplinary materials research and technology to improve the quality of life. In 2012, we launched the Materials Research Society Foundation to benefit a wide range of innovative grassroots, member-driven initiatives—from student chapter proposals, to local or regional education/outreach projects, to those with the potential to impact the materials enterprise worldwide. As such, the Foundation aspires to advance our Mission by engaging the materials community and building on MRS’s record of success with programs such as the Strange Matter traveling interactive science exhibition and MAKING STUFF, the four-part PBS primetime series on materials.

In only its second year, the grassroots, member-proposed awards are fulfilling the Foundation’s vision, impacting local and global materials communities with these exciting programs:

2013

East Boston High School (EBHS) Materials Science Program, Shannon Morey, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA

Nanomaterials for Middle School Students, Sarah Tolbert and Jia Ming Chen, University of California–Los Angeles, USA

Materials Outreach for Rural Education (MORE), Gabriel LeBlanc, Michael Turo, Amy Ng, and Toshia Wrenn, Vanderbilt University, USA

2014

Building the SciBridge between Africa and the U.S., Veronica Augustyn, The University of Texas at Austin, USA

Fostering Environmental Consciousness in Classrooms through Sustainable Materials and Biopolymers, Subhalakshmi Nagarajan, Bowling Green State University, USA

Integrating Art and Materials Science: A Workshop of K–12 Teachers, Jamila Cola, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA

Science Saturdays, Katie Van Aken, Drexel University, USA

Smart Puppy, Ivan K. Schuller, University of California–San Diego, USA

Student support is also a major focal point of our Foundation. MRS University Chapters, MRS Graduate Student Awards, and free electronic membership for students in developing countries—all funded by the Foundation—are excellent examples of how the Foundation is supporting the next generation of materials researchers. The MRS Awards Program, which recognizes excellence in materials research, is an important part of our Foundation as well. We’re proud and excited to announce that a new MRS Postdoctoral Award has been added to our growing roster, with the inaugural recipients to be announced at the 2014 MRS Fall Meeting.

To be clear, the Materials Research Society Foundation was specifically created to support materials research and materials researchers, and those founding principles are evident in all that we do. For example:

  • All Foundation programs are coordinated by MRS committees, volunteers, and/or members.

  • MRS provides the majority of financial support for Foundation programs.

  • Our Foundation effectively leverages individual donations, corporate support, and grants to deliver programs and services that you want.

  • All monies from the new MRS Corporate Partner Program go to support our Foundation.

  • Our Foundation is operated as part of MRS, so overhead is at “best practices” philanthropy levels, ensuring the vast majority of monies go to Foundation programs.

We look forward to the continued growth and impact of Foundation programs in 2014. We are launching a new endowed award for the sixth consecutive year. We continue to engage and connect University Chapters from around the world through MRS OnDemand®. And we will once again collaborate, through the 2014 MRS Fall Meeting and the MRS Mentoring Program, with the Partnerships for Research and Education in Materials (PREM) Program to engage undergraduate students from minority-serving institutions.

These and all other Foundation programs are made possible by the significant efforts of our members, volunteers, and Headquarters staff. But we need your help! Please consider partnering with our Foundation in any of the following ways so that we can continue to positively impact our community:

  1. 1. Volunteer to be a mentor and pass along your “lessons learned” to the next generation.

  2. 2. Donate $10 to the Foundation on your upcoming membership renewal or the 2014 MRS Fall Meeting registration.

  3. 3. Engage students at your institution or alma mater, encouraging them to become active in the MRS University Chapter Program.

  4. 4. Volunteer for MRS Operating Committees that oversee Foundation programs.

Together we can advance the MRS Mission and create a better future for the materials community.

Tia Benson Tolle

2014 MRS President

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