You remember science fairs, right? Where you made a baking soda and vinegar volcano that your parents totally didn’t mostly do themselves? For science geeks, a science fair is like a sporting event where competitors flex their intellectual muscles. The Super Bowl of science fairs then, has to be the White House Science Fair, created by the Obama administration half a dozen years ago. Nerdist was there for this year’s science fair, and believe us, these kids aren’t making vinegar-filled volcanoes. They’re making the future.
This year’s science fair took place last week, and it was the biggest ever. Over 130 kids from 30 different states in the US were in attendance, many showing off their ideas and creations like they would in a grade school gymnasium. It really was the cream of the crop — Olivia Hallisey, 17, created a rapid, cheap diagnostic test for Ebola. Gabriel Mesa, 16, is currently looking to commercialize his creation that helps sufferers of diabetic nerve pain. Joining them were superstar science communicators like Adam Savage, Randall Munroe of xkcd, and Bill Nye the Science Guy.
President Obama’s thought process for putting on a science fair in the White House is simple: if athletes get invited to the grounds for their achievements, so too should our innovative and curious youth. These are the kids that will — Obama believes — continue to put the US at the forefront of global innovation and progress in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) fields. Some many even be the first on Mars.
So join us in the video above and check out just a small sample of the geeky goodness these kids brought to the White House. We guarantee you it will restore your faith in future generations…and make you wonder what the heck you were doing at age 16.
Ever participate in a science fair? What project would you show off at the White House? Let us know in the comments below!