Franklin Institute President Dennis Wint Joins Drexel University’s Museum Leadership Faculty
September 05, 2013
A visionary leader in the museum world, Dr. Dennis M. Wint, president and chief executive officer of The Franklin Institute, will join the faculty of the new museum leadership graduate degree program launching this fall in Drexel University’s Antoinette Westphal College of Media Arts & Design.
Wint is internationally known for his museum management expertise and has been recognized with the Association of Science-Technology Centers' Fellow Award for his significant contributions to the advancement of public understanding and appreciation of science and technology.
During the 2013-2014 academic year, Wint will serve as a part-time member of the faculty, advising on areas ranging from course and curriculum development to recruiting and community outreach, and he will do limited teaching. Beginning Jan. 1, 2015, Wint will become a full-time member of the Museum Leadership program’s faculty as a teaching professor. Wint will work in collaboration with Dr. Danielle Rice, former executive director of the Delaware Art Museum, who was recently appointed director of the new program.
“Dr. Wint is one of the most impressive and respected leaders of science and technology education and museums in the country,” said Westphal College Dean Allen Sabinson. “His vast expertise in museum leadership and his enormous skills as a visionary and as a communicator will be invaluable assets to our students, to many Drexel initiatives and to the museum world. We are honored to welcome Dr. Wint on board.”
Wint’s commitment to fostering science learning beyond the museum world resulted in a partnership with the School District of Philadelphia that created the Science Leadership Academy, a nationally-recognized magnet high school, and the launch of the annual Philadelphia Science Festival, which has reached nearly 300,000 participants in its first three years, and stands as a national model for festivals of its kinds.
When Wint leaves the Franklin Institute at the end of 2014, he will have been its longest serving president with a tenure of nearly 20 years. His accomplishments include the refurbishment of core exhibits in the Institute’s 1934 museum building, such as the beloved Giant Heart. As a result of methodical planning and ambitious goal-setting that supported two major capital campaigns, the Institute has invested almost $130 million to improve the visitor experience through the renovation of exhibits, theaters, and public spaces, as well as in breaking ground on the future Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion, a 53,000 square foot expansion project, the first for the Institute in more than 25 years.
“Having served the museum community for more than 40 years, Dennis is perfectly positioned to lend his experience, counsel and knowledge of all aspects of museum management to this new program,” said Rice. “I have no doubt that his vision and guidance will inspire the next generation of museum leaders. I am thrilled to have this opportunity to collaborate with Dennis on this exciting new venture to create a program that will prepare future museum leaders to face an ever increasing set of challenges on a national basis.”
Wint studied wildlife management at the University of Michigan and obtained his doctorate in science education from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. He first came to Philadelphia in 1977 and taught science education classes at Temple University from 1978 to 1982. Since then, his distinguished career includes tenures as president of the St. Louis Science Center, director of the Cranbrook Institute of Science in Michigan, and director of the Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University as well as service on the boards of the American Association of Museums, Association of Science Museum Directors, National Health Sciences Consortium, the Pennsylvania Society, The Nature Conservancies of Pennsylvania and Ohio, Parkway Council Foundation and the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance.
About the Drexel Museum Leadership Program:
Drexel University’s new Master of Science in Museum Leadership is designed to prepare leaders who will enable museums to fulfill their missions of stewardship and education. The innovative curriculum of this 45-credit degree covers the full range of domestic and international museums—art, history, science, archaeology, zoos, aquariums, arboretums, historic houses, children’s, and folklore. It offers courses that are interdisciplinary, encompassing multiple areas of knowledge and expertise within Drexel and beyond. The program combines cutting-edge theory, history and practice and addresses the need for increased diversity in the museum workforce, management, collections and programs. The M.S. in Museum Leadership can be completed on a part- or full-time basis. The program deliberately and thoughtfully includes all members of our communities, cultivating leaders of a range of ages and backgrounds with an awareness and appreciation for diversity in all of its meanings. For more information about the Program, go to: www.drexel.edu/westphal/graduate/MUSL