Science is in the national spotlight as events and award ceremonies around the country take place. On Oct. 10, the USA Science and Engineering Festival kicked off. Dedicated to “re-invigorate the interest of our nation’s youth in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM),” the two-week festival features exhibits, movies and performances aimed at “producing and presenting the most compelling, exciting, educational and entertaining science gatherings in the United States.”
Meanwhile, several ASBMB members received national recognition for their accomplishments. The Institute of Medicine inducted 65 new members on Oct. 11. Included were 6 members of ASBMB (Carol Greider, Michael D. Lairmore, Ira H. Pastan, Peter J. Polverini, Kevan M. Shokat and Carl Wu). On Oct. 15, President Obama awarded the National Medal of Science to 10 researchers, including ASBMB members Stephen J. Benkovic, Susan L. Lindquist and Stanley B. Prusiner. The award is the highest recognition a scientist can receive from the government.
Monday saw the launching of the White House Science Fair, where President Obama celebrated student winners of various national STEM competitions. Students displayed their exhibits to a crowd filled with scientific luminaries, ranging from Nobel Laureates Baruch Blumberg, John Mather and Harold Varmus to administration officials including Energy Secretary Steven Chu and Science Advisor John Holdren, along with media personalities Bill Nye (“Bill Nye ‘The Science Guy’”) and Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage (“Mythbusters”). The event was part of President Obama’s goal of increasing exposure to science.
This week will culminate with the Grande Finale Expo on Saturday and Sunday, in which ASBMB will be participating. Stop by our booth on the National Mall for some tasty hands-on science!