Smithsonian Institution Receives $50 Million From Gates Foundation

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has awarded three grants totaling $50 million to the Smithsonian Institution, the Washington Post reports.

The awards include a twenty-year, $30 million grant to support efforts by the institution's new Youth Access Endowment to reach underserved K-12 students. Among other things, the endowment will create a series of interactive Web sites and host a variety of online conferences.

The institution, which is chaired by former Gates Foundation president and CEO Patty Stonesifer, also received two grants of $10 million from the foundation. One will support the institution's strategic plan through expanded research and public programs, and the other will be used to support the design and construction of the National Museum of African American History and Culture, which is scheduled to open on the Mall in 2015.

Christine Ledbetter. "Gates Foundation Donates $50 Million to Smithsonian." Washington Post 11/03/2010.