The Discovery Center of Springfield Inc. took home a $1 million national prize recognizing its education work during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Springfield nonprofit yesterday was announced as the winner of the inaugural STOP Award during the Forbes 30 Under 30 list live launch party in New York City, according to a news release. Forbes partnered with the Center for Education Reform on the award, which stands for sustainable, transformational, outstanding and permissionless.
“The Discovery Center’s efforts throughout one of the most challenging times in our nation’s – and the world’s – history are a tremendous beacon for what education can and should look like," said Randall Lane, Forbes chief content officer and editor, in the release. "We look forward to seeing this organization expand their transformational learning offerings in 2022 and beyond.”
Last year, the Discovery Center began offering child care services for health care workers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The nonprofit also recently launched Discovery School at the Center, a private school that focuses on science, technology, engineering and math programming.
With the $1 million prize, the Discovery Center plans to develop a new app that helps parents customize learning to their child's needs, no matter which school they attend in Missouri, according to the release. Additionally, the nonprofit has goals of expanding its existing school in Springfield and growing its education program to over 27 rural counties, 29 other states and three countries.
The Discovery Center won against finalists CARE Elementary School, or Christian Academy for Reaching Excellence, in Miami, Florida; the Dallas Education Foundation in Texas; the Louisiana Key Academy; and Rock by Rock, a New York City-based startup that helps with education at home. The finalists are set to receive $250,000 apiece.
The expanded facility is expected to reach annual revenue of $650M.