Applicants must meet all of the following criteria to be eligible for an award:
- That it is a science center or museum or a children's museum that is physically located in the State.
- That it has been open, operating, and exhibiting science or science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education objects to the general public at least 120 days of each year for the past two or more years.
- That it is a nonprofit organization that is exempt from federal income taxes pursuant to section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or received Grassroots funding in 2015.
- That it has on its staff at least one full-time professional person.
- That its governing body has adopted a mission statement that includes language that shows the museum has a concentration on science or STEM education.
- That it provides a detailed plan for the proposed use of the funds and measurements for the projected results.