Heroes

Teen clockmaker Ahmed Mohamed dropped by the White House Astronomy Night.

Ahmed was there, but he left his 'cool' clock at home.

Remember last month when a kid named Ahmed brought a clock to school, and it became this whole big thing?

He built a clock and decided to bring it to school. His teachers thought it was a bomb (or a fake bomb), called the police, and had him suspended. It was this whole ordeal, and if you're just getting caught up, you can read about it all right here.

And then President Obama was all like, "Hey, come hang out."



Fast forward to last night, when the president hosted the seventh annual White House Astronomy Night.

This year's White House Astronomy Night was geared toward encouraging students to look into education and careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics — commonly referred to as STEM fields.

A post on the White House's website reads, "We are bringing today's students — and tomorrow's engineers, scientists, and innovators — to the South Lawn of the White House to gaze at the moon and the stars, to learn through hands-on STEM activities, and to hear from astronauts and other scientists about their exciting experiences."

Here's President Obama addressing the crowd on the White House South Lawn. Photo by Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images.

In attendance at this year's gathering was — you guessed it — our guy, Ahmed Mohamed.

He met briefly with the president, but this clock-building superstar was in high demand.

"We talked about Mars and 2030, and I talked to him about the generator that I'm making and how it could help people on Mars," Ahmed told CBS News of his meeting with President Obama.

But he forgot his clock at home, though! Ahmed! You had one job! Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

Between snapping selfies with former astronaut and NASA associate administrator for the science mission directorate John Grunsfeld, taking in the stars, and enjoying the atmosphere, it seems like Ahmed had quite a night.

Ahmed Mohamed takes a selfie with NASA's John Grunsfeld. Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

Also in attendance were Bill Nye, Jamie and Adam from Mythbusters, and students from around the country.

Here they are, along with NASA deputy administrator Dava Newman.


It was a chance to celebrate some recent achievements like NASA's New Horizons mission to Pluto.

On Jan. 19, 2006, the New Horizons probe was launched. This July, it completed the first-ever successful flyby of Pluto — our favorite not-quite-a-planet planet.


And the president gave a quick call to the International Space Station. No biggie or anything.


Oh, and there was also a big telescope, which is pretty cool.

Here's the president with Brooklyn, New York, student Agatha Sofia Alvarez-Bareiro, checking out the stars through a telescope on the White House lawn. Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Image.

Ahmed may have been the special guest, but there's something universal about the wonders of space we can all enjoy.

Keep dreaming. Keep building. Keep doing your thing, Ahmed.

Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

You can check out President Obama's full astronomy night remarks below.

He tells a really cool little story about Carl Sagan. This is totally worth the watch.

Photo by CDC on Unsplash

When schools closed early in the spring, the entire country was thrown for a loop. Parents had to figure out what to do with their kids. Teachers had to figure out how to teach students at home. Kids had to figure out how to navigate a totally new routine that was being created and altered in real time.

For many families, it was a big honking mess—one that many really don't want to repeat in the fall.

But at the same time, the U.S. hasn't gotten a handle on the coronavirus pandemic. As states have begun reopening—several of them too early, according to public health officials—COVID-19 cases have risen to the point where we now have more cases per day than we did during the height of the outbreak in the spring. And yet President Trump is making a huge push to get schools to reopen fully in the fall, even threatening to possibly remove funding if they don't.

It's worth pointing out that Denmark and Norway had 10 and 11 new cases yesterday. Sweden and Germany had around 300 each. The U.S. had 55,000. (And no, that's not because we're testing thousands of times more people than those countries are.)

The president of the country's largest teacher's union had something to say about Trump's push to reopen schools. Lily Eskelsen Garcia says that schools do need to reopen, but they need to be able to reopen safely—with measures that will help keep both students and teachers from spreading the virus and making the pandemic worse. (Trump has also criticized the CDCs "very tough & expensive guidelines" for reopening schools.)

Keep Reading Show less