2022-2023 STEPS-IMA Cohort Announced

Carol Boyce and Sharon Stoakes of Traer part of cohort

The Traer Historical Museum now looks spiffy and new with a renovated facade. Above, the new sign that adorns the museum. Below, the awning was also refabricated, tinted windows were added and a fresh coast of paint was applied to give the museum a great new look.

Six Iowa organizations have been chosen to participate in the 2022-23 STEPS-IMA cohort. STEPS-IMA is a learning group utilizing the AASLH STEPS curriculum to build the capacity of small and mid-size history organizations to function at basic, good, or better practices. STEPS-IMA will utilize an online module, cohort and mentor framework and use a variety of instructional approaches and tools.

The Iowa Museum Association received a National Endowment for the Humanities American Rescue Plan (NEH-ARP): Humanities Organizations award to support STEPS-IMA. This grant supported the completion of the STEPS-IMA dashboard and infrastructure, and provided full scholarships for the January 2022-23 cohort.

Cynthia Sweet, Executive Director, Iowa Museum Association, said, “We are tremendously grateful for the NEH-ARP funding. Grant funding enables institutions of all sizes to participate in a program that will build their capacity and increase their service to their community. Our cohort will consist of staff and board members working together to professionalize policies and procedures, leading to higher functioning and more sustainable organizations.”

The 2022-23 cohort will include Carol Boyce and Sharon Stoakes, Traer Historical Museum, Traer; Janet Mootz and Bryce Moyer, Hoyt Sherman Place, Des Moines; Sarah Lind and Sandy Gabrielle, Felix Adler Children’s Discovery Center, Clinton; Mary Dreier and Gayle Mayer, Dickinson County Museum, Spirit Lake; Evy Raes and Louise O’Donnell, Slater Historical Society, Slater; and Carol Elam and Marcia Wing, Runnells Historical Society, Runnells.

Sweet said, “We were delighted with the applicants for the first cohort, as they represented museums of various sizes from all Iowa regions, east, central and west. We look forward to working with the twelve individuals chosen as they represent six diverse institutions.”

Providing STEPS-IMA is a core mission fulfilling activity for the Iowa Museum Association and builds on a best practice workshop series that IMA offered in years past. Moving to an online format and a standardized curriculum increases access and ensures a sustainable professional development program.

For more information about STEPS-IMA visit IMAonlinelearning.com For more information about the Iowa Museum Association, visit www.iowamuseums.org