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Davis Journal

Full STEAM ahead at Hill Aerospace Museum

Jun 06, 2024 09:36AM ● By Braden Nelsen
 Visitors walk past the C54 Skymaster at Hill Aerospace Museum. Photo by Roger V. Tuttle

Visitors walk past the C54 Skymaster at Hill Aerospace Museum. Photo by Roger V. Tuttle

HILL AEROSPACE MUSEUM—One of the biggest challenges facing parents of school-aged children is keeping them meaningfully occupied during the summer. Sure, there are movies, pool parties, and vacations, all of which have their place, but for a fun, educating experience the rest of the season, there are the STEAM programs at the Hill Aerospace Museum.

Jake Murray, Education Coordinator at the museum has been working with the program for three years now and is excited to see the return of some cherished favorites, as well as some new offerings to help kids of all ages improve learning over the summer. “We’re always looking for opportunities to get people excited,” said Murray.

Many people are familiar with the acronym, STEM, which stands for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, but fewer know the added ‘A’ in STEAM, which incorporates the arts, including design, and history. In a place like the Hill Aerospace Museum, it almost goes without saying that history design and art were a much-needed inclusion.

Along those lines, Murray introduced a new feature of the STEAM program at Hill this year, the “Aircraft Adventure Class.” This new offering will focus on six different airframes over the course of the summer, and presents students with the opportunity to not only learn more about these aircraft but also get an up-close look at each of them, “We’re very excited,” said Murray, “It’s going to be fun.”

As part of the “Aircraft Adventure Class,” Murray and the education team at the Hill Museum are looking to expand educational opportunities for a more grown-up audience as well, welcoming those who may have always been curious about specific aircraft at the museum but have never had the opportunity to get up close with one.

STEAM students at the museum will also have the opportunity to take weather classes, learning about air pressure, lightning, tornadoes and other conditions, and how aviators navigate those challenges. There will also be classes on “The Forces of Flight,” where students will learn how those giant, steel aircraft actually get airborne. And of course, the ever-popular rocket class will be returning, letting students build their own paper rockets and launch them into the air.

Each of these classes are free and held on a first-come, first-served basis, meaning there is no pre-registration. Doors will open for each class 10 minutes before start time, and classes fill up at about 50 students per class. Despite the challenge of “making a product that appeals to a 4-year-old and a 17-year-old at the same time,” as Murray put it, there’s bound to be something for everyone this summer at the Hill Aerospace Museum’s STEAM programs. 

More information on the STEAM program and other educational opportunities at the Hill Aerospace Museum can be found at