Hello, I'm Dr. Monique M. Chism, the Smithsonian's Under Secretary for Education. I invite you to join me and my colleagues at this year's National Education Summit. The Summit is a premier professional learning experience, unlike any other education convening because it leverages content and unique experiences from our 21 museums, libraries, and science and education centers. Our theme for this year's summit is "Together We Thrive, Connecting at the Intersections." This event is free for all participants and brings together thousands of teachers, museum educators, librarians, students, and caregivers from across the globe. Save the date for this one of a kind experience, which occurs July 16th, 17th and 18th, both in the heart of Washington, D.C. and live-streamed globally. Join us and engage with national figures, leading experts, and educators shaping the future of tomorrow. The sessions will explore how to use art to connect the past and present, demonstrate how to help students understand global challenges with local solutions, provide real life examples of youth taking civic action and effective practices for inclusive storytelling. On day three, in-person attendees can have access to exclusive behind the scenes workshops to explore how our Smithsonian educators collaborate with teachers to transform learning experiences, exhibiting the power of collaboration and creativity at its finest. Don't miss out on this unique opportunity. Register now and join us for this transformative educational experience.

Headshot of Monique M. Chism, Under Secretary of Education

With great pleasure, I extend an invitation to join me and Smithsonian educators for this year’s Summit, "Together We Thrive: Connecting at the Intersections." The Summit is a three-day program, occurring July 16-18, 2024, with online, in-person, and on-demand engagement opportunities for participation. The event is free, and in-person sessions will occur at the Donald W. Reynolds Center for American Art and Portraiture—an iconic space in the heart of Washington, D.C., and home to the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the National Portrait Gallery, and the Lawrence A. Fleischman Gallery of the Archives of American Art.

As we gather to explore this year's theme, we will delve into the intricacies of interdisciplinary approaches, which are paramount in gaining a comprehensive understanding of the complex issues we face today.

Adopting a holistic perspective that transcends disciplinary boundaries becomes increasingly imperative in a world where challenges are multifaceted and dynamic. This year's theme underscores the significance of embracing diverse viewpoints and methodologies to navigate the intricate web of interconnected issues. By recognizing the intersections between various fields of knowledge and expertise, we pave the way for innovative solutions and meaningful collaborations.

Featured keynote speakers include education technology leader and Chief Executive Officer of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development and the International Society for Technology in Education Richard Culatta; the 2024 Council of Chief State School Officers’ National Teacher of the Year Missy Testerman; Artivist, Bestselling Author and Illustrator Nikkolas Smith; and Young Inventor, Author, Activist and STEM promoter Gitanjali Rao.

Sessions led by our community of over 300 talented Smithsonian educators will explore relevant themes at the intersections of art, culture, history, and science, including:  

  • Using Art to Connect Past and Present;  

  • Inclusive Storytelling;  

  • Thinking Globally, Acting Locally; and  

  • Youth Taking Civic Action.  

We will also feature special invited sessions from leading education and innovation collaborators, such as:

The Aerospace Corporation

Afterschool Alliance

Alliance for Public Waldorf Education

Chinese American Museum, Los Angeles

College of Education and Human Development, Temple University

Community School for Creative Education, California

Council of Chief State School Officers

D.C. Public Schools, Washington, D.C.

East Jordan Public Schools, Michigan

EnCompass Four Corners School, California

Fairfax County Public Schools, Virginia

International Society for Technology in Education

Japanese American National Museum

Johnson & Johnson

Kentucky Humanities Council

LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes

Montgomery College

National Council for the Social Studies

National Council of Teachers of English

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Old Dominion University

Prince George's County Public Schools, Maryland

Rockingham County Schools, North Carolina

Round Rock ISD, Texas

School of Art & Design, University of New South Wales, Sydney 


World Wildlife Fund

YURI Education Project

The Summit will draw thousands of educators nationwide, including teachers, curriculum specialists, librarians, state education agencies, administrators, and museum and cultural educators.  

In-person participants can engage in curated workshops, keynote presentations, and several unique tours and experiences, including deep dives with recently opened exhibitions, “Change YOUR Game”/ “Cambia Tu Juego” at the National Museum of American History’s Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation and “Fighters for Freedom: William H. Johnson Picturing Justice” at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, plus behind-the-scenes experiences with scientists and educators to explore marine collections at the National Museum of Natural History. There is truly something for everyone at the Smithsonian! 

Once again, welcome to the Smithsonian National Education Summit. We look forward to an enriching and inspiring experience, as we work together to create education systems that enable all students to thrive. Register for free today and be sure to tell a friend! 



Monique M. Chism, PhD 
Under Secretary for Education 
Smithsonian Institution

Smithsonian Participation

Anacostia Community Museum  
Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum  
Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation

National Museum of African American History and Culture  
National Museum of American History
National Museum of Asian Art
National Museum of Natural History
National Museum of the American Indian
National Portrait Gallery
National Postal Museum

Our Shared Future: Reckoning with our Racial Past

Smithsonian American Art Museum  
Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center (NMNH) 
Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center 
Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage 
Smithsonian Environmental Research Center 
Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service | Smithsonian Affiliations 
Smithsonian Office of Educational Technology 
Smithsonian Office of the Under Secretary for Education 
Smithsonian Science Education Center 
Smithsonian's National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute 
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute