Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation

Registration for field trips has closed for the school year. The 2022 fall field trip application process will open in August.

The Town Center at the Discovery Building is an exceptional destination for scientific exploration. All groups interested in a field trip must fill out an online application form. See examples of the workshops we offer for students in K-23-5middle school (6-8) and high school (9-12).

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Who Can Attend

Class groups from elementary, middle and high schools; homeschoolers; and community groups with at least one adult (18 years or older) chaperone per 10 students. In-person experiences are geared towards 3rd-8th grade students and will be limited to 40 students. Virtual experiences are open to K-12 students and work best with no more than 50 students per session. Groups should have a minimum of 20 students. Special accommodation requests should be mentioned at the time of application.


Both virtual and in-person field trip opportunities are available (select preference when completing application):

  1. VIRTUAL: Virtual experiences will take place online using preferred approved platforms. Each workshop is designed to accommodate classrooms participating on individual devices or collectively as a classroom.
  2. IN-PERSON: In-person experiences will take at the Discovery Building teaching labs located on the research floors, staffed with scientists committed to bringing cutting-edge science experiences to students of all ages.


Different field trip workshops are available during the fall and spring semesters for K-23-5middle school and high school (9-12) levels. You will need to select your preferred workshop experience and format based on the age of the students and time of year.

  1. VIRTUAL FORMAT (K-12): Students participate in an experience or activity followed by a 30-minute virtual discussion with a STEM professional related to the topic. Teachers will receive a Digital Information Guide that includes activities/videos and other helpful information related to the selected topic once the application is approved. This guide can be worked into curriculum plans as appropriate to the classroom but should be completed with students prior to the scheduled virtual discussion. The Discovery Outreach team will work directly with teachers to schedule the post-activity discussion with a scientist based on classroom schedule and availability.
  2. IN-PERSON FORMAT (3rd-8th graders): Students participate in two 75-minute hands-on workshops in Discovery Building teaching labs. These experiences feature campus research and also allow students the opportunity to ask questions and directly engage with STEM professionals.
    • Specific safety instructions and protocols will be communicated with the teacher at least two weeks prior to the session. Discovery Building programming staff reserves the right to request compliance with any health and safety policies that may differ from an attending school’s (i.e., masking, distancing, etc.).


  1. VIRTUAL (February–May): Post-activity discussions with a STEM professional (After Party) will be coordinated to accommodate scientist availability as well as classroom schedule based on preferences listed on the application form. The sessions will last approximately 30 minutes and will ideally take place using the school’s preferred virtual platform. When completing the online field trip application form, teachers will select preferred week, day and time for the After Party. We will notify teachers of application status and confirm that the topics and dates selected are available.
  2. IN-PERSON (April–May): In-person field trips will be scheduled on Tuesdays or Wednesdays from 9:30 to noon. Date preferences can be indicated at the time of application but cannot be guaranteed. Field trips consist of two 75-minute workshops in a lab setting. Groups are split into two groups, which complete workshops simultaneously and then switch labs to complete the second activity. If your group is larger than 40 students, you will need to come on separate field trip dates.
    • Field trips do not have a lunch break built in but there is the option to eat lunch on the Town Center floor following the conclusion of your second activity. Lunch policies will be communicated prior to scheduled trip.
    • Field Trip Schedule: 9:30 a.m.-noon, back-to-back activities
      9:30-10:45 a.m. – Workshop Activity 1
      10:45 a.m.-noon – Workshop Activity 2
      Noon-12:30 p.m. – Optional lunch time


To schedule a field trip, groups must complete an online application form. Activity offerings depend on the semester and age group. Applications are booked on a first-come, first-served basis, subject to availability. Accepted applicants will be notified in a timely fashion and will be given additional details at that time. In-person groups will be asked to complete Discovery Building Visit Agreement form prior to attending.


  1. VIRTUAL: Discovery Building virtual field trips are offered free of charge.
  2. IN-PERSON: Discovery Building in-person field trips are $4/student. Discounts may be provided based on your school’s free/reduced lunch statistics. Please provide any relevant information when completing your registration form. All groups will be invoiced for their visit after the trip based on the number of participants confirmed two weeks before the field trip date. Please do not bring payment on the day of your visit.
    • Limited funds are available to cover a portion of the cost of transportation for qualifying groups to bring school-aged children to the Discovery Building for field trips. Partial reimbursements are available on a first-come, first-served basis for schools based on need.

Questions about Discovery Building field trips should be directed to Sam Mulrooney at 608.316.4390.

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