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Melanie is the museum’s newest Development Officer, and she is already having a blast getting to know The Discovery and what we are all about. Melanie felt that joining the team at The Discovery was a good fit for several reasons, the first being that science is cool! Keeping that in mind, she also feels that the principles of science have become obscured in recent years, and she wants to deliver programs that remind the community that science is for everybody.
As a Development Officer, Melanie is tasked with developing and maintaining relationships with charitable foundations, as well as writing grants for the museum. When it comes to her new role, Melanie relishes collaborating with her colleagues to create eye-catching grant proposals. She loves grant writing because it combines her love for language with her business acumen.
Prior to joining The Discovery, Melanie grew up in Santa Cruz, California, living with her mother and grandmother until she finished college. After attending her local community college, Melanie transferred to UCSC to complete her BA in Literature with a minor in Spanish. Once her work at UCSC was finished, Melanie moved to Reno to work for Intuit, where she stayed for six years. After her time at Intuit, Melanie attended UNR for her Master’s in Business Administration with a focus on Entrepreneurial Studies. During her time in grad school, she volunteered as a fundraising coordinator and a business development consultant for local art-based nonprofits. Nonprofit work would become another constant in Melanie’s life, as she also came to be one of the founding board members for Kid Rocker, a Reno-based nonprofit music education program for at-risk youth.
Before her position at the museum, Melanie worked as the Director of Development & Finance for Junior Achievement of Northern Nevada (JANN), a nonprofit that delivers entrepreneurship, financial literacy, and work readiness programming to K-12 classrooms. In addition to her current role at The Discovery, Melanie also serves on the board of directors for Double Scoop, a statewide media outlet that covers the visual arts in Nevada!
As for the future of The Discovery, Melanie hopes to see the addition of more exhibits and activities for teens and young adults as the museum continues to grow into a world-class science center. She also hopes to see a continued investment in rural outreach.
The Discovery is proud to have another fantastic member of the Reno community like Melanie on our team! Though she says she is hard of hearing, she loves meeting new people. So if you see her around the museum, don’t be scared to say hello!