Innovation Lab

Community Engagement

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  • Programming Partners

    Working together locally and nationally
The Bryan Innovation Lab regularly works with local partners to provide unique programming for Steward students and the community. The "BIL" serves not only as an innovation center for students on the Steward campus, but also as a resource for others, both locally and nationally, who are interested in innovative topics.  

The Bryan Innovation Lab extends its welcome mat to the greater Richmond community for events and collaboration throughout the year. It is our goal to include friends old and new who are interested in the topics at hand. Please contact Megan Young for more information about events at the Bryan Lab.

Engagement in Innovation

The Bryan Lab aims to be a connector for innovative ideas between The Steward School and the Richmond community. A few examples of our partners and programs include:

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  • Bluebird Society of Virginia

    The Steward campus has a certified bluebird trail with ten bluebird boxes in our habitats. For several years, the Bryan Lab has collected data for submission to the Bluebird Society of Virginia, and the school continues to host a live webcam during nesting season.
  • Crochet Coral Reef

    The Steward School Satellite Reef is part of the larger international network of a citizen science project that is increasing awareness about the importance of coral reefs around the world. The Institute for Figuring and the Crochet Coral Reef project is led by Dr. Margaret Wertheim, who served as a Visiting Innovator in 2016. This hands-on project and exhibit has been created by faculty, staff, students, parents, and RVA community members. This project supports the intersection of nature, technology, art, and math.
  • James River Association

    Through a partnership with the James River Association, the seventh-grade students spend part of Middle School Community Week at the VCU Rice Rivers Center, exploring and learning about the James River and its importance in Central Virginia.
  • Monarch Waystation

    The Shyla Ipsen Memorial Gardens feature a nationally-certified Monarch Waystation on our campus grounds. Students work with horticulture experts to plant native perennials that help support the life cycle of monarch butterflies and other pollinators. Visitors have the opportunity to learn how sustainable horticulture practices can help create vibrant and healthy ecosystems for all.
  • National Wildlife Federation

    The habitat and gardens surrounding the Bryan Lab are designated as a Certified Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. Our educators believe education about how to support a healthy ecosystem and diversity among wildlife helps foster stewardship in our students and their engagement with the world.
  • Science Museum of Virginia

    The Science Museum of Virginia continues to be a resource for dynamic programming that is supported in the Bryan Lab. Access to local experts and national research helps fuel student experiences and professional development for faculty and staff. The Kardboard Kingdom, which was an exhibit hosted by Steward at the museum's RVA Makerfest in 2016, is one example of how Steward has partnered with SMV to help bring innovation to the RVA community.
We invite community partners in the Greater Richmond metro area to work with us on inititatives that serve our community and environment.

Awards and Recognition

The Steward School is fortunate to have an award-winning facility and innovative educational resource on campus. Our success is built on many years of expert advice and engagement to help design, build, and support innovative education in our Richmond, Virginia community. Organizations that are striving to innovate their programming or facilities are invited to contact us to learn more about the Bryan Innovation Lab.

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  • 2016 Virginia Secretary of Agriculture — Gracie Goodpasture

  • 2015 Department of Education, Green Ribbon School Award

  • 2015 National Science Teachers Association, Angela Award — Gracie Goodpasture

  • 2015 American Institute of Architecture, 3North's Design of the Bryan Innovation Lab, Richmond Honor Award

  • 2014 Governor's Environmental Excellence Award, Bronze Medal

  • 2014 Partners in the Arts, University of Richmond Grant Award for Math, Science, Physics, and Art

  • 2014 Crystal Award, VCU Energy and Sustainability Conference

  • 2013-2014 Virginia Naturally Recognized School

  • 2013 VAIS, Virginia Association of Green Schools, Go Green VA Challenge, First Place

  • 2013 Tricycle Gardens, Golden Trowel Award, Certificate of Recognition

Meet the Bryan Innovation Lab Team

List of 4 members.

  • Photo of Megan Young

    Megan Young 

    BIL Program Coordinator
  • Photo of Laura Akesson

    Laura Akesson 

    US Science Teacher and BIL Liaison
  • Photo of Suzanne Casey

    Suzanne Casey 

    Innovation Specialist
  • Photo of Eleanor Bailey

    Claire Bailey 

    MS Science Teacher
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