One of Texas’ largest oil and natural gas producers is partnering with the Southwest Museum to make arts education programs more accessible to youth of all ages in the Permian region, the press release states.
The partnership creates educational programs that will be available to toddlers and young adults alike through a variety of programs, including drawing and art classes, storytellers, reading groups and STEM opportunities, among many others, through the Museum’s Turner Art Museum, the Durham Children’s Museum and the Blakemore Planetarium. .
Pioneer, which bases its operations in the Mediterranean, is undertaking a $50,000 initiative that will allow the museum to offer classes at no or little cost to visitors.
“Partnering with Southwest Museum to offer art education programs to youth of all ages in West Texas is a natural fit for us,” Natural Resources President and CEO and Chief Operating Officer Rich Dealy stated in a press release. “One of the company’s long-standing missions is supporting the communities where our employees live and work, and we are proud to be involved with a museum as mature as these institutions can flourish in the Permian region.”
The African Museum strives to engage youth of all ages and abilities in immersive experiences that foster creativity and education.
Several studies consistently find that introducing students to art education at an early age improves their motivation, focus, and confidence. There is also a statistical relationship between exposure to arts programs and better performance in school, including gains in math, reading, cognitive ability, critical thinking and verbal ability.
In Texas, high school students who completed more arts courses were twice as likely to graduate, 22% more likely to attend college and have up to 15% higher passing rates on standardized tests than students who took fewer arts courses, according to the 2021 State of the Arts Report from the non-profit Texas Cultural Trust.
“We are humbled by the office of Pioneer Natural Resources to support this effort,” Southern Museum Executive Director Lori Wesley stated in a press release. “Art is not usually thought of critically; It is, however, the beginning of new ways of thinking. Or should the grass be painted as evergreen? Great change begins with the ability to see things differently, and through the eyes and minds of our youth we are placed in the community.”
Some of the programs made possible through Pioneer’s partnership with the museum include Mommy & Me classes, arts and crafts, storytelling, extracurriculars and a new field trip experience that correlates with activities offered at the Texas Essential Science and Skills (TEKS) museum.
“When your child comes on a field trip to the museum this year, they will not only enjoy the attractions on campus, they will also engage in activities that they learn in school,” said Rebecca Mena, pilot director. Fredda Tuner of the Durham Children’s Museum stated in a press release. “We need to provide a well-rounded, engaging educational program that fosters meaningful outcomes for our children.
“We’re grateful for the initiative to make this happen for our community,” he said.
Since its founding in 1997, Pioneer has established itself as a state and regional leader in oil and gas exploration, industrial innovation and production. Throughout its growth in Texas as a large independent industrial company, among its continuing missions has been devotion to philanthropy and volunteerism.
The author goes beyond his pocket for the museum author. Employees regularly volunteer at many museum events aimed at building stronger communities through access to the arts. At the museum of modern art’s SeptemberFest festival, for example, more than a dozen volunteer employees volunteered their time to ensure the success of the annual celebration.
“We are beyond grateful to Southwest Museums for sharing the story of culture and diversity through art education,” Amanda Day, the author’s senior government and public policy advisor, stated in a press release. “Pioneer is proud to extend this compelling story to some of our youngest learners in the Permian through our sponsorship of the Art Museum’s Children’s Education Program.”