The White House will recognize student champions of science today at the sixth and final 2016 White House Science Fair. The best of the best student scientists, innovators and inventors will present a variety of projects from robots to under water experiments. President Barack Obama will act as host, celebrating the student winners of a broad range of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions from across the country. More than 130 students representing more than 40 STEM competitions were invited to the fair. Having invested $3 billion into STEM programs, the president maintains this generation has the potential to be one of America’s greatest.
The White House says the event will “highlight the ingenuity and entrepreneurship of this next generation of students and the opportunity they have to tackle our toughest challenges.” At the first White House hosted Science Fair in 2010, keeping the focus on education, Obama noted if sports champions can be honored with a trip to 1600 Penn, so can young science all stars.
“If you win the NCAA championship, you come to the White House. Well, if you’re a young person and you produce the best experiment or design, the best hardware or software, you ought to be recognized for that achievement, too,” Obama said at the time.
Per the White House, here are more items that will be covered on today’s event agenda:
The President will also announce new commitments in support of the Administration’s Computer Science for All initiative announced earlier this year, as well as the “Educate to Innovate” campaign to ensure that all students are engaged and prepared in STEM subjects.
The President will also highlight the growing community of education, business, and nonprofit leaders who have responded to his State of the Union call to give every child the opportunity to learn computer science (CS), as well as his overall “Educate to Innovate” campaign to ensure all students have the tools to be innovators and problem-solvers.
Today’s announcements include:
· New Department of Education guidance to states, school districts, and other education organizations on the many ways they can use existing Federal funds to advance Pre-K–12 STEM and CS learning.
· A $200 million investment by Oracle to support CS education for an additional 125,000 students in the United States.
· More than 500 K-12 schools committing to expand access to CS, with support from Code.org.
· Commitments to expand STEM learning for more of our youngest learners, from family engagement to innovative use of media.
· A new online matching platform, supported by US2020, to help more STEM professionals who want to volunteer and mentor.
Today’s STEM announcements also mark progress on the President’s My Brother’s Keeper Initiative and the efforts of the Council on Women and Girls to build ladders of opportunity for all young people, including populations underrepresented in STEM; incorporate STEM into the Administration’s push to expand high-quality early-childhood education; and advance the Climate Education and Literacy Initiative to help connect all American students and citizens with the best-available, science-based information about climate change. Full details on all of today’s announcements can be found here.
The White House Science Fair is part of a week of Administration activities celebrating science and technology, featuring the President’s participation as a guest presenter throughout this week on the Science Channel’s nightly science news segment. In addition, the White House Science Fair will be immediately followed by the USA Science & Engineering Festival, the nation’s largest celebration of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, with more than 350,000 students and adults expected to engage in more than 3,000 hands-on activities over 3 days. More than 70 Federal agencies will participate in the Festival.
Private Sector commitments will also be rolled out today. Oracle Corporation has come on board with the White House STEM initiatives, committing over $200 million to provide computer science training for an additional 125,000 students in the United States. New partnerships ave also been established to train more teachers in computer science.
This event will be streamed live at WhiteHouse.gov/live.