University of Nebraska State Museum again receives accreditation

Released on 04/20/2009, at 2:00 AM
Office of University Communications
University of Nebraska–Lincoln
Lincoln, Neb., April 20th, 2009 —

The University of Nebraska State Museum has again earned accreditation by the American Association of Museums, the highest national recognition afforded U.S. museums.

AAM museum accreditation signifies excellence to the museum community, governments, funders, outside agencies, and the public, said Priscilla Grew, the museum's director. The museum has been continuously accredited since 1973. All museums must undergo a reaccreditation review at least every 10 years to maintain accredited status.

"I am very proud of all our staff for their hard work and accomplishments in the collections care and research, exhibits and educational programming that were highly praised by the Accreditation Commission. Reaccreditation has been a team effort involving the museum, the UNL administration, and the Friends of the University of Nebraska State Museum, all working together to demonstrate our museum's strengths during the rigorous national review," Grew said.

Accreditation brings national recognition to a museum for its commitment to excellence, accountability, high professional standards and continued institutional improvement. AAM's accreditation program has been the field's primary vehicle for quality assurance, self-regulation and public accountability for nearly 40 years. Of the nation's estimated 17,500 museums, 775 are accredited. The NU State Museum is one of five museums accredited in Nebraska, including UNL's Sheldon Museum of Art.

"This accreditation recognizes what Nebraskans have long known -- that our museum is truly a statewide treasure," said Prem Paul, vice chancellor for research and economic development at UNL. "The museum is a vital and important resource for UNL and a great partner with faculty campuswide on research, education and outreach."

Accreditation is a rigorous but rewarding process that examines all aspects of a museum's operations, Grew said. To earn accreditation a museum must conduct a comprehensive self-study and undergo a site visit by a team of peer reviewers. AAM's Accreditation Commission considers the self-study and visiting committee report to determine whether a museum should receive accreditation.

"Accreditation is emblematic of an institution's commitment to public service and to overall excellence," said Ford W. Bell, AAM president. "Attaining accreditation involves taking a hard look at yourself, allowing your peers in the field to do the same, and being judged to be superior in all areas. The people of Nebraska can take great pride in the fact that their local institution is one of America's premier museums."

The Museum is located in Morrill Hall south of 14th and Vine streets on UNL's City Campus. Hours are 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday, 9:30-8:00 p.m. Thursdays, and 1:30-4:30 p.m. Sundays. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for children 5-18 years old (4 and under are free) and $10 for families (up to two adults with children). There is an additional charge for planetarium shows. Parking is free. For more information, visit or phone (402) 472-3779.

The American Association of Museums has been bringing museums together since 1906, helping to develop standards and best practices, gathering and sharing knowledge, and providing advocacy on issues of concern to the entire museum community. With more than 15,000 individual, 3,000 institutional, and 300 corporate members, AAM is dedicated to ensuring that museums remain a vital part of the American landscape, connecting people with the greatest achievements of the human experience, past, present and future. For more information, visit

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