PGAV Destinations Donates $50k to Saint Louis Science Center’s Youth Exploring Science (YES) Program
St. Louis-based design firm PGAV Destinations, known for their global work in designing destinations and attractions from museums to theme parks, has donated $50,000 as a challenge gift to the Youth Exploring Science Program (YES) at Saint Louis Science Center.
The YES Program is a nationally recognized program to inspire underserved youth to pursue STEAM (science, technology, engineering, the arts and math) learning and careers.
A lasting legacy
Through this gift and matching gifts from several donors, the Science Center has raised more than $100,000 for the YES Program as part of a Memorial Fund honoring longtime Commissioner and Trustee Donna Wilkinson.
PGAV CEO Mike Konzen says: “We are committed to helping advance our design industry and the greater attractions industry by supporting programs that bring students with more diversity into STEAM job opportunities.”
“It is no secret that the architecture and design fields have been underrepresented by people of color. If we are going to move the needle in designing and innovating for all, it will take all of us to make the meaningful changes toward greater diversity and inclusion.”
The Science Center’s president and CEO Todd Bastean comments: “The YES Program has long been a meaningful part of STEAM education for youth from underserved communities in St. Louis. PGAV’s gift and the matching gifts from many supporters help provide crucial reinforcement of the importance of this program.”
Over the course of the Science Center’s more than twenty-year YES Program, teens—many from traditionally underserved communities—receive hands-on experience, college and career readiness training, and mentoring to prepare them for post-secondary education and the career opportunities of today’s 21st century workforce. During their time in YES, teens explore areas like aerospace, cyber security, engineering, entrepreneurship, integrative medicine and well-being, and media production.
The program is associated with the St. Louis’ municipal STL 2030 Jobs Plan, a decade-long roadmap designed to boost economic growth, increase the quantity of living-wage jobs, and reduce disparities in employment to promote opportunities for all.
Konzen concludes: “We are excited to encourage community support for STEAM learning opportunities through the YES Program. Importantly, this program perfectly aligns with the STL 2030 Jobs Plan, which focuses on creating equitable opportunities and inclusive growth in several science-based industries in our community.”
About PGAV Destinations
PGAV Destinations is a global leader in the planning and design of unique destinations. Now entering its sixth decade, the practice has evolved to become the ideal destination-consulting partner, skilled at developing growth-oriented master plans and translating those plans into successful projects. No other firm offers such an integrated approach to destination planning.
PGAV Destinations’ key clients include industry leaders such as Delaware North Companies, SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, the Biltmore Companies, Bass Pro Shops, Ameristar Casinos, Universal Studios, The Gettysburg Foundation, the Saint Louis Zoo, and many others. Recent assignments include planning and design at many of the world’s “must see” destinations, including the Grand Canyon, Biltmore Estate, Space Shuttle Atlantis, Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, the Georgia Aquarium, the Hoover Dam, and SeaWorld Adventure Parks.
About the Saint Louis Science Center
The mission of the Saint Louis Science Center is to ignite and sustain lifelong science and technology learning. Named a Smithsonian Institution Affiliate in 2016, the Saint Louis Science Center features more than 700 interactive exhibits, as well as a five-story OMNIMAX® Theater, Boeing Hall and the James S. McDonnell Planetarium.