I was at primary and secondary school in Heidelberg, Germany. I then studied at the University of Heidelberg for a Biology degree to then move to Glasgow, Scotland to do a PhD at the University of Glasgow.
MSc & PhD
I worked as a reseracher at the University of Melbourne, Australia for 6 years after my PhD. Now I work at NUI Galway in Ireland.
Junior group leader and researcher at NUI Galway
Favourite thing to do in science: Find out stuff no one found before :-).
I was born in Heidelberg, Germany and lived there until 10 years ago. I then moved to Glasgow, Scotland and a few years later to Melbourne, Australia. I currently live in Galway, Ireland with my wife, my 14 moth old daughter, 2 chickens and 1 super friendly dog. I love to Spaghetti Bolognese with lots of cheese. In my spare time I often act as a referee for Roller Derby – a new female sports that involves quad skate roller skates and lots of shoving and pushing for points. Its fun to referee this sport. I like to read., listen to music and watch TV series in my spare time.
I am a researcher in basic science – this means I try to answer fundamental questions about how life works and the majority of my scientific output is not directly applied, but often leads to new findings that allwo others to conducted applied science experiments based on my findings.
My Typical Day
Arrive, read and answer e-mails, run and analyse various experiments, teach students or junior researchers, have meetings, read and answer more emails, go home, repeat
What I'd do with the money
Create an outreach program for local Galway schools to learn about the diversity of very very tiny and small life in the oceans – alga and other single celled organisms
I want to create a programme where I go to local schools in Galway (primary and secondary) and teach about the so-called biodiversity in our oceans, but instead on concentrating on the large animals, I want to show the tiny tiny animals that are still soooo important for life on this planet. Single celled alga organisms – such as the dinoflagellates. To demonstrat how cool these dinoflagellates are I will bring some living cells with me.
I will bring a dinopet -> https://vimeo.com/88713129
I also plan to bring a microscope and a view microcope slides that show the diversity of these small organisms. Showing the amazing small life that we usually dont see with the naked eye I am hoping to create more awarness of our environment and appreciation for the world we live in.
I will put the money towards buying 2 to 3 dinopets (see above) and also a affordable and simple microscope for the programme.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
curious, inquisitive, inventive
Who is your favourite singer or band?
Pearl Jam & New Model Army
What's your favourite food?
Any good food of the yummy kind
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Diving at the Great Barrier Reef and in Bali and seeing all these amazing marine creatures – MINDBLOWING!!!
What did you want to be after you left school?
Were you ever in trouble at school?
I never paid attention so I dont know :-)
What was your favourite subject at school?
What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?
I found out that a particular molecule in a marine alga allowed them to completly change the way they pack away their genetic information in the nucleus in comparison to other organisms
What or who inspired you to become a scientist?
The story of how Howard Carter found Tutanchamun’s grave in the Valley of the Death in Egypt.
If you weren't a scientist, what would you be?
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
More sporty, better organised and less worried.
Tell us a joke.
What is blue and runs across a meadow? – A pack of plums!