Darryl Williams joins NASA’s efforts in creating a STEM-literate world

Photo of Darryl Williams, The Franklin Institute’s Senior Vice President of Science and Education

 

Darryl Williams is a strong believer in pursuing your dreams. 

The new Senior Vice President of Science and Education at The Franklin Institute has held many roles in his fulfilling career before coming here, including serving four years with the National Science Foundation and leading Tufts University’s STEM diversity initiative.

In August, Williams was appointed to NASA’s Ad Hoc Task Force for STEM Education. This task force is an advisory committee comprised of eight individuals from all areas of science and engineering who have made an impact in the push toward STEM literacy. They meet three to four times a year at different locations in the U.S. The role of the Task Force is to facilitate NASA’s involvement in the continuum of STEM education from pre-college to professional levels. Duties include streamlining the effectiveness of NASA’s education-related programs and reporting these findings to the National Advisory Council. 

“My goal is to make Philadelphia the most STEM-literate city in the country,” he said. “We will push Philadelphia to be a model for STEM education and literacy for the world.” 

Williams’ extensive experience in both federally funded and higher education proves to be an invaluable asset to the task force. After earning his Ph.D. in chemical engineering at the University of Maryland, he was a NIH postdoc fellow at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). After some time in nonprofit management, he went on to work at the National Science Foundation, and then later joined Tufts University’s School of Engineering, where he was the Dean of Undergraduate Education as well as the Director of the Center for STEM Diversity. Williams returned to Philadelphia this April year to work at The Franklin Institute. Here, he oversees all aspects of the science and education programming to further the Institute’s efforts in inspiring a passion for learning about science and technology. In a way, he has come full circle, from being a recipient of STEM education funding to now helping future generations pursue and persist in STEM. 

Williams is proud to represent both The Franklin Institute and NASA. He emphasized the important role that The Franklin Institute plays as an educational mainstay in Philadelphia. By leveraging the resources of both organizations, he hopes to strengthen the connection between aspiring students and educational institutions in the community and beyond. 

Even with all of his accomplishments, Williams doesn’t plan on stopping here. “My goal is to make Philadelphia the most STEM-literate city in the country,” he said. “We will push Philadelphia to be a model for STEM education and literacy for the world.” 



More About Dr. Williams:

As The Franklin Institute’s new Senior Vice President of Science and Education, Dr. Darryl N. Williams oversees all aspects of the science and educational programming at the heart of the Institute’s efforts to inspire a passion for learning about science and technology.