• Question: Did you ever think that you would be a scientist

    Asked by dantecousin2008 on 2 May 2020. This question was also asked by lucieb1.
    • Photo: Nina Rzechorzek

      Nina Rzechorzek answered on 2 May 2020:


      I think the ‘pull’ of science was always there. When I was younger I think the thing I enjoyed most about science was that quest for discovery and exploration. If you have any sense of curiosity about the world, and like problem solving then there is definitely a place in science for you. There are endless types of science careers; the best advice I can give you is to try lots of different things until you find something that really inspires you. No job is perfect, and there will always be tough days and things to be done that you don’t enjoy so much – that’s life. Never be afraid of trying new/difficult things and failing – this is where the best learning happens!

    • Photo: Melanie Krause

      Melanie Krause answered on 7 May 2020:


      I wanted to be one from age 12 but I always thought scientists are these incredibly smart people that are very different from the rest and I didn’t think I was smart or different enough.. but I decided to go for a Biology undergraduate degree and move up from there anyway.. in some ways I sometimes still think I’m a student and other scientists are so much smarter but eventually you realise ‘Hey now I’m one of THEM too’ 😉

    • Photo: Candice Ashmore-Harris

      Candice Ashmore-Harris answered on 7 May 2020:


      I don’t think I thought about it until I was doing my A levels. I really liked most of my subjects at school, particularly maths – I even did further maths at A level. When I was applying for university I couldn’t imagine 3 years studying only maths but I did want to carry on studying science. I wasn’t certain about what I wanted to do for a job later so I chose a broad science undergrad that would give me lots of choice to follow areas I was interested in studying throughout. The best thing to do is follow the subjects you’re interested in. You’re preparing for the jobs of the future – some of these jobs haven’t even been invented yet!

    • Photo: Giulia Paci

      Giulia Paci answered on 7 May 2020:


      It’s definitely something I thought / dreamed about for a long time, but to be honest it took many years before I really understood what it meant! In school I didn’t really get the chance to meet / interact with any scientist (one reason why I think this “I’m a scientist” program is great!) so I had a pretty old-fashioned idea of scientists, coming from books and movies. Once I got in touch with the first research labs during my University studies I finally really saw what it means to do science today – it’s not really a “lone genius” work but very often an interactive, collaborative and interdisciplinary team work!

    • Photo: Ailith Ewing

      Ailith Ewing answered on 7 May 2020:


      I always, apart from a brief flirtation with French, thought I’d do some sort of science at uni. And I did in the form of maths degree. But I never really thought I would stay in academia as long as I have. Or indeed make a career for myself as a scientist. I’ve now been working using maths to answer biomedical questions in three different universities for 8 years including my PhD! Science is so broad there are so many different disciplines and areas of research that there’s all sorts of different jobs in science. So there’s something for everyone it’s just a question of trying lots of things and finding out what you enjoy and what you’re good at.

    • Photo: Kim Liu

      Kim Liu answered on 7 May 2020:


      I think I’ve wanted to do science of some sort for a long time. I’m very content with what I’m doing and what I’ve done, but I feel like I was quite narrow-minded about it. If I could go back/pause time, I’d probably want to try getting more experiences of other jobs/careers. So many other jobs seem very interesting to me right now; I guess lots of things become very interesting if you think about them at a deep level.
      I’m meandering a little, but the gist of what I’m trying to say is this: It’s kind of impossible to know what a career is like until you do it, not least because of the huge variety within the same kind of jobs! If something catches your eye and seems positive, try to take that opportunity to gain knowledge about it ~

    • Photo: Donna MacCallum

      Donna MacCallum answered on 11 May 2020:


      I didn’t really know that being a scientist as a job was an option when I was at school… but did think about being a vet… I love my job now and couldn’t really imagine doing anything else.

      Not knowing about science and research being a job is one of the reasons that it’s great being able to take part in things like this where students get to ask about our jobs

    • Photo: Shaline Fazal

      Shaline Fazal answered on 12 May 2020:


      I don’t think I ever really knew what I would become, but I always knew what I was interested in. From a very young age I always wanted to find out how things worked beneath the surface. This interest was fulled even more when I was at school, particularly during my science lessons and design and technology. I very much enjoy thinking outside the box and applying knowledge and insight from other areas and fields to solve a problem, which is something that being a scientist allows for. An important aspect about being a scientist and in research is to not fear failure so to speak as you will find that many experiments don’t always work, and that you have to be very flexible in your thinking and approach. I love the variability in the daily changes I face in doing research as it’s what keeps me on my toes, excited and driven to discover! 🙂

    • Photo: Roberta Migale

      Roberta Migale answered on 13 May 2020:


      Definitely no! Growing up in a little village in South Italy I honestly never had the opportunity to be exposed to any scientist. I think I did not know they existed until I was quite older and started studying Biology and Chemistry in high school. But even then, not having any role model or contact with real scientists did not make me ever consider this path. I actually wanted to be a lawyer until I was about 15 years old! But at 16 I started studying Biology and that was it, I had to follow this path at Uni and that’s how I became a scientist. You may not think this is what you want to do in the future and that is way opportunity like this platforms are so so great for students and you should ask us any question it may help figuring out what you’d like to do in the future!

    • Photo: Tiffany Chan

      Tiffany Chan answered on 15 May 2020:


      Not really, no! I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do when I was at school; in fact, I was torn between studying sciences or languages at university. In the end, I decided to study Chemistry and haven’t looked back. What’s great about science is that it’s so broad that you will definitely be able to find something that you’re interested in – follow that and see what happens!

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