Is it possible to say the name “Bill Nye” and not follow it up with the words “the science guy”? An American science educator, comedian, television host, actor, writer, and mechanical engineer, Bill Nye is perhaps one of the most recognizable faces of science education. His popular show, Bill Nye the Science Guy from Disney/PBS ran for five years, from 1993 until 1998, capturing the hearts and minds of elementary and middle school students across the nation.
Nye studied mechanical engineering at Cornell University and began his career at the Seattle-based Boeing. After several years at Boeing, Nye began acting on a local sketch comedy show called Almost Live! He also made appearances during live-action educational sequences of Back to the Future: The Animated Series, where he played the silent role of Dr. Emmett Brown’s assistant.
The popularity of the Back to the Future segments gave Nye the visibility to begin hosting his own show, Bill Nye the Science Guy beginning in 1993. Each episode of the show taught a different aspect of science, but in a way that was both comedic and captivating to audiences.
Since the end of Bill Nye’s show, he has remained active in the science education and entertainment industries, often appearing on talk shows, working as a technical expert/consultant, and guest starring on popular TV shows. He has also spent time guest lecturing at his alma mater, Cornell, on topics like astronomy and human ecology.
Bill Nye also helped to develop a small sundial in the early 2000s, which went on to be included in the Mars Exploration Rover missions (“MarsDial”). He has served in leadership positions for organizations like The Planetary Society, Chabot Space & Science Center, and others.