Drug Enforcement Administration

DEA Headquarters

February 11, 2014

Contact: National Media Affairs Office

Phone Number: (202) 307-7977

Maryland Science Center And DEA Open Powerful New Exhibit

Target America exhibit explores the many costs and consequences of illegal drugs

(BALTIMORE) -   - The 10,000 square-foot Target America: Opening Eyes to the Damage Drugs Cause exhibit opened today at the Maryland Science Center and runs through September 1st.  The national touring exhibit is an interactive exploration of the effects of drugs on both individuals and society.  Visitors will have the opportunity to explore the history and the current science behind drug law enforcement, drug abuse prevention, and drug treatment specific to Maryland’s local communities.

Experienced by more than 22 million students, teachers, and parents in nine cities across the country to-date, Target America explains the science behind illegal drug addiction, and the countless costs and consequences of illegal drugs to individuals, American society, and the world. Visitors will experience a drug investigation from start to finish, helping them understand the environmental effects of drugs and what law enforcement, drug abuse education, and treatment are doing to break the troubling cycle of drugs and drug-related violence. They will view both an actual South American jungle coca processing lab, a re-created Afghan heroin factory, as well as analyze brain-scans in a simulated MRI machine and view real wreckage from a drug-related car accident. A new portion of Target America will focus specifically on Maryland and Baltimore, exploring the evolution of heroin abuse and enforcement in the area, the addiction science research taking place at Maryland universities, and drug abuse prevention groups working to educate students across the state.

“This exhibit opens at the height of school group visitation to the Maryland Science Center.  We look forward to sharing its content with the hundreds of schools who will be visiting on field trips between now and the end of the school year,” says Maryland Science Center President and CEO Van Reiner.

Target America: Opening Eyes to the Damage Drugs Cause was developed in partnership with The DEA Educational Foundation, The U.S. Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, The U.S. National Guard, The National Institute on Drug Abuse, The Office of National Drug Control Policy, and The Partnership at Drugfree.org. 

“This Baltimore, Maryland exhibit will educate both youth and adults of the Mid-Atlantic Region on the devastating effects that drug trafficking and drug use have on our community.  Marylanders will understand that drug enforcement, prevention, and education go hand-in-hand in order to solve the drug abuse and addiction issue,” stated DEA Special Agent in Charge Karl Colder.
A broad coalition of corporate, foundation, and individual sponsors helped cover the costs of bringing the Target America exhibit to Maryland.  The exhibit began a national tour in 2002 at the DEA Museum in Arlington, Virginia and has since inspired over 22 million visitors in Dallas, Omaha, New York City, Detroit, Chicago, Los Angeles, New Orleans, and most recently in Tampa.  For more information on the content of the exhibit and related educational programs, visit www.targetamerica.org - .
Target America is free for Maryland school groups when visiting on field trips. All Target America activitiesare free with paid admission to the Maryland Science Center.For dates of specific activities, more information and ticket prices, visit www.marylandsciencecenter.org - or call the 24-Hour Information Line at 410-685-5225.

About the Maryland Science Center
- Named one of Parents Magazine’s Top 10 Science Centers in America, the Maryland Science Center in Baltimore makes science understandable and fun for more than 500,000 visitors a year. The Maryland Science Center inspires, fascinates, motivates and engages children and adults with dozens of interactive exhibits, traveling exhibitions, original presentations in the world-famous Davis Planetarium, larger-than-life movies in the five-story St. John Properties IMAX Theater, and hundreds of hands-on programs delivered throughout the state each year.
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