GSK students take on the role of engineers during GSK Science in the Summer™ in partnership with The Franklin Institute

Issued: May 3, 2021, Philadelphia, PA

  • Free STEM enrichment program returns in hybrid form for summer 2021

  • Lottery for free science kits opens today

GSK Science in the Summer™, a free summer STEM program that aims to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers by providing opportunities for children to explore science careers, think scientifically, and practice real science techniques, returns this summer with a new theme: Be an Engineer!

Traditionally held at local libraries and community-based organizations, the program is adapting this year to offer both in-person instruction and at-home family exploration with virtual live events led by Franklin Institute educators. This hybrid model ensures that GSK Science in the Summer™ can continue to offer high-quality, interactive STEM learning for its 35th year to even more students entering second through sixth grade at a critical time in their educational journey and following the disruption of the 2020-21 academic year.

This all-new curriculum invites children to play the role of engineers and tackle electrical, biomedical, environmental, and structural engineering challenges through experiments, videos, and live virtual events. Students will explore the engineering design process as they find solutions to real-world problems, from managing a playground's stormwater runoff to designing a sturdy lightweight pedestrian bridge.

Families across the five-county Greater Philadelphia area selected by lottery will receive a science kit with materials to perform two hands-on engineering experiments at home. Through accompanying online videos, educators from The Franklin Institute will guide students through the setup of their at-home lab space and share more about the engineering project they will be exploring as they take on the role of an engineer. After conducting their experiments at home, students and families can reflect on their experiences through live virtual programs with Franklin Institute educators and other program participants. They will also have the opportunity to interact with guest engineers in special editions of Engineering for Good, a Franklin Institute Facebook Live series led by chemical engineer Darryl Williams, Ph.D., Senior Vice President of Science and Education.

Interested families in Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties can enter the lottery to win a kit of science materials beginning at noon on Monday, May 3, 2021, at Families not selected in the lottery can still experience the complete virtual program using simple science materials from home. All activity guides, a materials list, lab notebooks, and videos are available on the website at no cost.

The Franklin Institute is also proud to bring the program to children in Philadelphia through both in-person and virtual programs via partnerships with five local out-of-school-time organizations: Education Works, CORA Services Inc., Christopher Columbus Charter School, Episcopal Community Services, and To Our Children’s Future With Health. By providing high-quality academic support, career readiness, recreation, and cultural enrichment to complement in-school education, these organizations play a critical role in helping children thrive.

Provided by GSK in partnership with The Franklin Institute, this fun, 100% free STEM enrichment program helps prevent the summer slide and works to keep students engaged with learning through fun, hands-on activities that will help ignite a lifelong passion for science.

"Scientists are finding solutions to problems today we never thought we would face, so it's even more important now to foster students’ interest in science early so they can see themselves as future scientists,” said Becki Lynch, Director, US Community Partnerships at GSK. "GSK Science in the Summer™ allows students to take on the role of scientists by identifying a problem, finding solutions, and testing the results. That is what science is all about: solving seemingly unsolvable challenges."

GSK Science in the Summer™ began in Philadelphia as part of GSK's commitment to supporting STEM education. In 2021, the program celebrates its 35th anniversary and has reached over 325,000 children. Each year it continues to grow and improve to remain fresh, engaging, and relevant for children across the country. This summer, nearly 6,000 children in the Philadelphia area will join thousands more GSK Science in the Summer™ students nationwide as they learn the importance of engineering through fun, hands-on, age-appropriate experiments. *

“Science in the Summer™ is unique in that it takes what students are learning in the classroom and brings it to life, creating a cohesive learning experience that ties everything together and resonates," said Dr. Darryl Williams, Senior Vice President of Science and Education.  "Science is at the forefront now more than ever and ensuring that underserved and traditionally underrepresented youth across the country have opportunities to see themselves as engineers, chemists, or doctors will help create a more diverse STEM workforce."

Developed by The Franklin Institute, the curriculum is freely available at

Watch the 35th Anniversary of GSK Science in the Summer™ video.

The Franklin Institute

Located in the heart of Philadelphia, The Franklin Institute is a renowned and innovative leader in the field of science and technology learning, as well as a dynamic center of activity. Pennsylvania’s most visited museum is dedicated to creating a passion for learning about science by offering access to hands-on science education.  For more information, visit


GSK is a science-led global healthcare company with a special purpose: to help people do more, feel better, live longer. For further information, go to and follow us on

Media Contact:

Stefanie Santo, The Franklin Institute 215.448.1152,

Evan Berland, GSK, 215.432.0234,

*The GSK Science in the Summer™ national network is sponsored by GSK and offered in partnership with The Franklin Institute (reaching 17,000 children in 30 locations across the county and 6,000 children in the Greater Philadelphia Area). UNC Morehead Planetarium and Science Center offers GSK Science in the Summer™ in North Carolina in partnership with GSK (reaching 5,000 children in 10 counties across the state).

Cautionary statement regarding forward-looking statements

GSK cautions investors that any forward-looking statements or projections made by GSK, including those made in this announcement, are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Such factors include, but are not limited to, those described under Item 3.D "Risk Factors" in the company's Annual Report on Form 20-F for 2019 and as set out in GSK’s “Principal risks and uncertainties” section of the Q2 Results and any impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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