Sanford PROMISE provides STEM education outreach for Sanford Research. We’re working to inspire the next generation of scientists, problem solvers, and thinkers. 

Our educational resources and programs include:

  • Teacher resources for the classroom: printables, slideshows, activities, and student lab notebooks.

  • Lesson plans aligned with national standards, complete with educational slideshows, videos, and hands-on activities.

  • Meet Our Scientists - watch online with your class or send us a request to meet virtually with one of our research scientists.

  • Career exploration opportunities - we have internships, research shadowing experiences, and more ways to connect with our research professionals.

  • Enrichment for students and educators - join our Teen Science Café, PROMISE Community Lecture, or professional development workshops.

  • On-site experiences for small groups are scheduled on a per-case request basis right now. As the COVID-19 situation evolves, we reserve the right to modify all class dates and event sizes in an effort to prioritize the safety of all students and staff. All attendees will need to comply with safety precautions, including screening questions and wearing a mask.



We spark curiosity and instill problem-solving skills in younger kids – while making science fun.

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Middle School

Students will dive into the basics of scientific learning and examine the “whys” of our world.

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High School

At advanced levels, we help students apply scientific concepts and take charge of their learning.

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The Sanford Program for the Midwest Initiative in Science Exploration (PROMISE) was developed to connect communities in our region with cutting edge science and research. In 2010, Sanford Research created an outreach program to provide science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) experiences for K-12 students across South Dakota and neighboring states...

Learn More About PROMISE


5 Responses When Kids Ask 'Why?'

Why do I have to wear a coat? Why is the moon up in the daytime? Why do I have to get a shot? The questions can be endless, but they are important to the development of a child.

How Cold is Cold Enough for a Vaccine?

Two new vaccine therapies are on the horizon for COVID-19. Both need to be stored at temperatures cold enough to harden ice cream into a block of ice that only specialized freezers can produce.

Sanford PROMISE Provides Valuable STEM Education

For almost a decade, Sanford PROMISE has connected students, educators and communities with the latest in science and research.


Introduction to Bioinformatics: Viral Proteins


The SARS-CoV-2 virus causes COVID-19. In clinics and labs around the world, people are trying to understand how it works. Students will follow a case study and use a computer database to study the genetic sequence of a novel virus.

From DNA to Protein


Genetic disorders are traced back to DNA mutations. There any many types of mutations that lead to issues during cell protein creation. In this lesson, students will learn how DNA can affect proteins, discover the effects of a gene mutation, and learn about gene therapy as a treatment option.



Scientists need to be able to measure matter with different tools. Density is used to measure all forms of matter. With an understanding of density, students will have another tool to describe matter in their toolbelt.