White House Science Event

Published  January 20, 2016

By David Bodner, age 10, National Geographic Kid Reporter



On January 13, 2016, the White House hosted a State of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (SoSTEM) meeting at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, D.C. I went as a kid reporter for National Geographic Kids. President Barack Obama hosts the STEM fair because he thinks that kids who are interested in science, technology, engineering, and math are the future of this country. So he invites scientists and people with cool inventions to show them off. 


When I went into the fair, the first things I looked at were 3-D printed models of DNA and different organs. I got to take apart a heart! Then I saw some circuits that measured air pollution. The next invention I saw was a plastic tower with plants growing in it. Water was going down to the plants and artificial sunlight shone on it. It is going to be the future of urban farming.

Then, I got to go to a media briefing room with some other kid reporters. We listened to Dr. John Holdren, the president's assistant for science and technology, and Megan Smith, the United States’ chief technology officer. I asked Dr. Holdren if he had been interested in science as a kid, and he said he had. He got his first chemistry set when he was seven, and he used his mom’s lipstick containers to make rockets.

Next, we went to another room to hear a panel of scientists and engineers talk about science and their work. We also heard from some scientists through a video chat from Antarctica! One studied penguins, and one studied melting glaciers to help stop rising sea levels. I got to ask one of the scientists, "How does it feel to be cut off from the rest of the world?" He laughed and said, "Sometimes it is nice to have the peace and quiet." I then got to try on one of the big, red, heavy coats that they wear in Antarctica. It was awesome!

I feel so inspired after having seen all these people who are changing the world. Do you want to be a scientist? An engineer? An astronaut? Well, you should pursue your dreams!