Science Center of Iowa in Des Moines, Iowa

by Allison Schwanebeck, Director of Exhibits



The Science Center of Iowa (SCI) is excited to be a 2014 Maker Corps site!  SCI is fairly new to the Maker movement, but we believe making can be a great way of engaging new and existing audiences.  The prototyping, testing, experimenting, invention and innovation that is present in Making helps further SCI’s mission of engaging and inspiring Iowans along their lifelong journey of science learning.


We are very excited for our two Maker Corps Members to join the SCI team this summer.  What is it like to be part of the SCI team?  We are really passionate about learning and sharing our knowledge with our visitors, and with each other.   It is fairly common to hear the phrase “Experiment Time!” come across the radio or be sent out to staff via email.   When this happens most of our staff take a break from their day to see the latest experiment that is being prototyped.  Past experiment times have included exploding pumpkins, melting pennies with an old television screen and most recently a blow-torch made out of bacon.  It is our hope that our Maker Corps Members will not only engage our public audience, but share their passion for making with our staff and help us foster a culture of making within our organization.   We expect you to geek out and share about what you have made, learned, or when you’ve had a meaningful experience with a visitor.


SCI is planning on summer 2014 to be a “Summer of Making” at our museum and in the community.  We hope to engage and teach our community about Making throughout the summer, culminating in a Mini Maker Faire.   Our Maker Corps Members will be a key part of our programming and will be working closely with our education department to develop and facilitate Making opportunities and activities.   Additionally, SCI is looking to develop a volunteer maker program with our Maker Corps Members so that Making at SCI can continue year round!


Never been to Iowa? Not sure what to expect besides corn? Des Moines is a really cool city with lots to do over the summer.   Farmers markets, art and music festivals, and the Iowa State Fair just to name a few, and SCI is right downtown in the middle of all the action.  Check out the recent Washington Post blog on why Iowa rules . Maker Corps Members will be able to experience this all first hand and yes- we’ll even make sure you get some sweet corn too.

To learn more about SCI:


Twitter: @sciowa  Check out our unofficial #talesfromSCI


imax exterior night

Maker Ed is thrilled to welcome the Science Center of Iowa as a new Maker Corps Host Site for 2014.  Applications for all Maker Corps Members will open Monday, February 3, and close on March 21.  Click here for more information, and to apply. – Nancy







3 responses to “Science Center of Iowa in Des Moines, Iowa”

  1. Michael Avatar

    So, when is the actual Maker Faire going to be?

    Didn’t see anything on other than the same announcement. I would love to have one here in Des Moines.

    1. Nancy Rink Avatar
      Nancy Rink

      Hi Michael,

      The Maker Faire in the Bay Area is May 17-18th – As for the Des Moines mini-Maker Faire, I’m not sure the exact date, but it seems like the end of the summer is likely! Perhaps Allison Schwanebeck at sciowa has a more solidified date.

    2. Judy Downs Avatar

      Hey Michael,

      The Des Moines Mini Maker Faire will be on September 1 at SCI from 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. We are currently taking applications for makers as well! Email me with questions.

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