Scholars Initiative Will Strengthen the Smithsonian

February 12, 2016
Scientist examines specimen

A Smithsonian scientist examines a specimen at Q?rius, The Coralyn W. Whitney Science Education Center at the National Museum of Natural History

Secretary David J. Skorton has launched the Smithsonian Secretary’s Scholars to recruit and hire 40 of the world’s most promising scholars. 

“This is my highest priority,” Skorton says. “For all our treasures, the Smithsonian’s greatest assets are our scholars. They perform the research, analyze data, interpret our collections in history, science and art and present their work to the public. Meet any one of our curators, scientists, historians, educators and researchers, and you will understand how vital it is we invest in our scholars.”

Ed and Helen Hintz and Dennis and Connie Keller are among the first investors, funding six scholars. Their generosity helps launch the $25-million initiative and ensure its success. The Smithsonian plans to have these new scholars in place as soon as the fall.  

Smithsonian Secretary’s Scholars will accelerate the pace of discovery in every field and build a pipeline of intellectual leaders to amplify the institution’s global impact well into the future. These scholars will benefit from the Smithsonian’s worldwide reach, revered brand and decades of scholarship.

The Smithsonian Campaign will fuel the initiative. Each position is for a five-year term and funded with a $625,000 gift.  The positions offer the opportunity of named recognition of the donor.

Read more about Smithsonian Secretary’s Scholars for the arts here and science here, or contact Cynthia Brandt Stover,, 202.633.5248.

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