Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Patriots Point Naval and Maritime Museum has partnered with the nonprofit organization USS Yorktown Foundation to help fund new programs and upgrade technology and exhibits at Patriots Point to provide increasingly dynamic, interactive learning experiences for visitors and expand the educational program for students across the state.
Although Patriots Point is a state agency with a $49 million local economic impact, the museum receives no appropriated funding and looks to the USS Yorktown Foundation for assistance. The ships, exhibits and educational programs are maintained and improved through admissions, programming, and fundraising revenue. The USS Yorktown Foundation is the official foundation for Patriots Points’ fundraising revenue stream. Launched in 2013, the USS Yorktown Foundation is a 501(c)3 organization created with a mission to cultivate a learning environment that connects generations and inspires freedom, patriotism, leadership and service. The organization strives to build a culture of philanthropy and development at Patriots Point and to ramp up a vibrant membership program for Patriots Point visitors of all ages living in the Lowcountry and across the state.
“We understand that a visit to Patriots Point provides an opportunity to educate all generations about the stories and sacrifices made by men and women who exercised their responsibilities as citizens in service to the nation,” said Yorktown Foundation’s Executive Director Todd Cummins. “As an extension, the education programs on site are teaching the state’s future workforce. We are dedicated to ensuring Patriots Point has the resources it needs to reach these future generations in compelling and influential ways,” he concluded.
Funding contributed by the Yorktown Foundation will provide means necessary to renovate the ships at Patriots Point, allow more areas of the ships to be made accessible to the public, establish new education programs, and upgrade the museum technologically in order to embrace and appeal to younger audiences. The foundation’s support will allow Patriots Point to implement the Museum Master Plan commissioned by the Patriots Point Development Authority Board while substantially increasing and diversifying revenue streams.
Patriots Point lends itself to lessons in history, patriotism and due to its location on the Charleston Harbor, science. Current education programs provide naval and maritime history, literacy and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) instruction to tens of thousands of South Carolina students annually, with a focus on Title 1 schools, both onboard and through in-school programming. The Flight Academy opened in March is one new example of the interactive learning programs being implemented at Patriots Point.
Veterans of the Yorktown represented by membership organization the USS Yorktown CV-10 Association welcome the foundation’s role as fundraising entity for their ship and the rest of the attractions at Patriots Point, as well. Former crews are invested in preserving their legacy along with the carrier itself – a mission the foundation readily supports.
The USS Yorktown Foundation Leadership consists of Michael R. Sudzina, chairman, retired Procter and Gamble executive; Wayne Adams, CEO of the Adams Group; Admiral Jim Flatley III, retired Naval Admiral, community leader; and Todd Cummins, executive director. To support the foundation’s efforts, or to learn more about their efforts, please contact Todd Cummins, executive director of the USS Yorktown Foundation at 843-849-1928 or firstname.lastname@example.org.