Step into the awe-inspiring Museum of Science and Industry (MSI), the largest science museum in the Western Hemisphere, located in Chicago, Illinois at 5700 South DuSable Lakeshore Drive. Join Vanessa, a retired environmental engineer and disability advocate, as she explores the wonders of MSI and shares her passion for inclusion and accessibility. Meet Chevy, a welcoming guide at MSI, who highlights the museum’s commitment to accessibility. From ADA accessible entry points to noise-canceling headphones and closed captioning, MSI ensures that all visitors can fully engage with its exhibits. Experience the “Blue Paradox” exhibit, where Vanessa, inspired by her background in environmental engineering, confronts her own impact on the environment and is motivated to take action.

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(bright music)

CHEVY: You are at the incredible museum of Science and Industry, that is the largest science museum in the Western Hemisphere, and we’re located in Chicago, Illinois. Our address is 5700 SouthDuSable Lakeshore Drive. You can take the L, the bus, Uber, Lyft, and we have an underground covered parking garage where you can drive to the museum. It is van accessible for ADA, as well as ADA accessible entry points. We are in the 1893 Palace of Fine Arts, Columbian Exposition building. It is incredible. It’s at 1.3 million square feet and we actually house over 400,000 square feet of exhibits throughout the building. Our vision is science discerns the laws of nature, industry applies them to the needs of humankind, but our mission is, to inspire the inventive genius in everyone. Welcome to MSI.

CHEVY: Welcome to MSI.

VANESSA: Thank you.

CHEVY: So excited that you’re here.

VANESSA: Hi, I am Vanessa and we’re at the Museum of Science and Industry. I’m an environmental engineer by training. I retired six years ago and I became a filmmaker, and I’ve been running a nonprofit organization dealing with advocating for people with disabilities. I was raised in Chicago and when I was a little girl, I came here a lot and I got really interested in science and engineering.Wow, this is amazing. So I just love this place. I have multiple disabilities myself, and I think people with disabilities should have a lot of fun and I’m one that wants to have fun.

CHEVY: As part of our mission, we want to make sure we are accessible to all and we strive and work very hard to create ADA accessibility throughout our building. We have ADA accessible paths, ramps, we have elevators, we have noise canceling headphones. We have the closed captioning in our movies and in our exhibits. We also have low sensory mornings for visitors who want to come before we open to the public. We ensure that we have experienced team members that can assist you and help you. You should be able to experience our museum like everyone else, any other accommodations that we can make, please reach out to one of our experienced team members.

VANESSA: This place deals with all sorts of things that resonate with me. The exhibit we saw today, the Blue Paradox, really struck me because as an environmental engineer, I knew that things were horrible. Took a quiz in the exhibit and I’m realizing even though I scored low for being a polluter, I’m still a polluter and I’m generating 1,400 bottles a year of waste. I’ve got to do something.That’s why the museums are here. They’re to inspire you to do things like that.

CHEVY: I’m hoping that everyone has that same incredible experience here at MSI and that they feel welcome and that we have the accommodations to make their experience awesome.

VANESSA: People with disabilities usually are marginalized. They don’t get the opportunities that everybody else gets. We want to be included in everything, and this museum is inclusive of people of all kinds of abilities. I love it here.

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