Emerald Coast Science Center

Rating: 4.38 stars   13 reviews

Issues:

Location: 139 Brooks St SE Fort Walton Beach FL 32548 USA

Mission: To inspire exploration, discovery and interest in science through the highest quality educational programs and interactive exhibits.

2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

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Rating: 5 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

The Emerald Coast Science Center is full of potential. From the outside it looks small, but once you go in you are greeted with four areas to explore different parts of science. One of my favorite areas is the Hall of Life with dedicated hands-on exhibits about different parts of the human body. Not only does ECSC offer a hands-on science exploration experience, the center also provides educational support to local schools. In particular the center focuses on providing FCAT science materials to elemenatry and middle schools as well as outreach programs. With their portable planetarium they can bring the stars to any classroom. Most importantly, the facilities and programs offered by ECSC are designed to get the whole family involved and spark the curiosity and creativity of younger generations. With community support ECSC can grow and continue to adapt to the needs of the area.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My experience with ECSC is through volunteering, from this experience I have seen kids and families engaged in quality science exploration. ECSC also provides significant FCAT and science education support to the local schools, but do not know the effect.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-8-01

Rating: 4 stars  

2 people found this review helpful

Our experience with the Emerald Coast Science Center has always been exciting and new. Each summer I bring my children along with their friends to explore and play at the Science Center. What is great about the Science Center is they never grown old as it is always changing and growing. Some exibits do remain the same, yet as my children grow and mature, they are able to think differently about it each time. Living here and having access to such a wonderful, fun place is great. What the Science Center does as far as contributing to our local schools is phenomenal. The director is agressive about going out and signing up our local schools to assist in Science programs. We are thrilled to have the Science Center in our community. We are excited about the future contribution it will bring to our children. What a great place to learn and grow and explore!

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

My children are very interested in Science thanks to the Science Center.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-6-01

Rating: 5 stars  

3 people found this review helpful

we have a great little science center. they are very active in the schools offering fcat training. we are in need of growing our attendance, so as a new board member, i hope to help with raising awareness

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my kids have viseted the center several times and loved it

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-7-01

Rating: 4 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I am a board member, but I am also a parent of 2 preschoolers who love the science center. It has many fun, interactive, and educational displays. My wife brought her MOPS group through as a field trip one day. The kids had a blast looking at the animals, playing in the bubble room, learning about the human body, looking at the optical illusions, etc. Some of the displays need updating, but all in all Jamie et al do an excellent job educating and entertaining our kids. In addition, the Science Center has excellent extra curricular activities, including FCAT prep, birthday parties, family science nights, and astronomy courses... Very much worth checking it.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Getting kids of all ages excited about science.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Some of the displays are old and need to be updated or removed.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The fun way that science is presented.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Helpful, knowledgable, and friendly.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Update all of the display, develop more programs, and hire enough staff to cover the extra programs.

Ways to make it better...

Some of the displays were upgraded or removed.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Money... Money.... and Money. It is in an awesome location, has a great staff, and has fantastic goals. It just needs to money to grow.

One thing I'd also say is that...

This is one of the best places to go when visiting the emerald coast.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-3-01

Rating: 4 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

This is one of our favorite stops when we visit the area. The staff are knowledgeable, the exhibits educational and my children love it.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my children's happiness.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-8-01

Thank you for taking the time to comment. We value our repeat visitors.

Rating: 4 stars  

9 people found this review helpful

The Emerald Coast Science Center is a great asset to our community and school district. Our family has participated in a variety of experiences at the Science Center. We routinely visit when in the downtown Ft. Walton area. Each of our children has their favorite display sections and always leave more curious about some aspect of science. Our children have also hosted their birthday parties at the Science Center; a great way to introduce more families to the Science Center and have fun at the same time. The kids enjoy the science activity and get to take home their creation. As a school parent volunteer, I have also accompanied students attending the Science Center during a field trip. These excursions allow all children the opportunity to explore the world of science. Our school's PTO incorporated the Science Center's "Family Science Night" program into our Science Fair. It was wonderful to see kids and adults learning about science at each different experiment table. Our children have attended various science camps and programs at the Science Center. This summer our two oldest daughters had a blast in the Lego Robotics camp. The Science Center creates that "spark" in young children via its hands-on displays and programs. Through its many varied programs, the Science Center helps cultivate that interest as students grow and develop.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

The Executive Director, Jamie LaFollette, Barb Wolf, support staff and instructors do a terrific job of reaching out to the community to espouse the benefits of the Science Center. We receive digital newsletters and class/program schedules regularly.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the variety of programs it offers. There are so many ways to experience the Science Center.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

very dedicated to keeping the Science Center thriving and a vital part of our community.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

upgrade and add hands-on displays. Offer additional programming. Upgrade it's physical interior - painting, carpet, etc.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-7-01

Melissa - thank you for your kind comments. Your family has experienced almost every one of our education programs and we thank you for your support.

Rating: 3 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

Working on the board has given me a new appreciation for the EC Science Center and its' importance to the community. The EC Science Center plays a very important role in our schools as well. We help expose kids to science in a way our teachers cannot. I have also had the pleasure of working with the Executive Director, Jamie. He is dedicated and eager to see the EC Science Center succeed and continue to help kids stay interested in science.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Seeing the progress a good board can make.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-7-01

Thanks, Peggy. We need more active supporters like you!

Rating: 4 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

The Emerald Coast Science Center has partnered with me to help our struggling schools by enriching their curriculum with such great programs as: "Family Science Night," "Afterschool FCAT Prep," and "The Mobile Planatarium." Jamie and the staff empower our teachers to make science more real for our students.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

ECSC has consistently proved to improve our school's FCAT scores.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-7-01

Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 5 stars  

8 people found this review helpful

The Emerald Coast Science Center is a fantastic part of the downtown community and in the schools. I have participated in their on campus programs at the local schools and was amazed by the student, parent, science interaction. This was a fantastic opportunity for parents and students to learn together. I have also participated with field trips and classroom activities at the science center and believe the hands on approach gives the student a better understanding of science. Above and beyond the science center is a major attraction to the area bringing learning and fun to children and families.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

It provides a fun place for my family to interact and learn.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would provide more funding and expand the learning experience. The location is perfectly surrounded by local park. I would add a planetarium, Audubon display in the park, update activities to include more high tech interaction.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

The school site programs bringing parents and children together. I love the location and the opportunity to learn with my children. My kids love school science experiments offered to the Northwest Florida Ballet students.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Fantastic

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

build a planetarium, work with regional universities, utilize the adjacent bay for aquatic studies, create an Audubon display,create high tech interaction and encourage more children to learn.

Ways to make it better...

They could update displays with planetarium, Audubon and more high tech with more funding. Otherwise extremely happy with what they provide.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

Funding. The organization rents from the city and the city's budget is facing major cutbacks. I hope they don't pull the plug.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I love the Emerald Coast Science Center and all it provides to the community.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-6-01

Rating: 5 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

I have been a board member at the E.C.S.C. for 8 months. In that time I have seen the only science center on the Gulf Coast of Florida fall on hard times due to this countries economic sitauation. However, I have also seen the members of this board rally to support the children of this community by working together to save this center, operate with better systems, and expand to reach more learners inside the center and outside at local schools. The director, Mr. LaFollette is extremely committed to the education and enlightenment of our children and driven by his passion for teaching. Bring the children, lets us do the rest, and they will blossom.

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I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have seen the exuberance of magic in the eyes of my own children. There is nothing more profound than watching the intellect of your child grow before your own eyes, and the excitement they display with new learning experiences.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the committment to children. Youth is this world's best resource. The E.C.S.C. cultivates our best resource through experiential education.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

extremely committed, friendly, patient, and knowledgable.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

renovate and expand, purchase and build new exhibits, offer increased coursework for multiple grades to supplement school science curriculum and F-CAT prep.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-8-01

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