How did your undergraduate degree help you in your chosen career?
It turned out to be the perfect degree programme for what I wanted to do as it gave me a wide base of knowledge. This platform has allowed me to work in such diverse subjects ranging from bird and mammal surveys to developing drugs for human medicine and now in designing molecular tools to help save the honeybee!
What have you been doing since you left University?
After graduating in 2001 I went to Peru to work for an NGO where I spent two years living in the Amazon rainforest surveying birds, mammals and insects. Afterwards I returned to Aberdeen to carry out my PhD before moving to Australia in 2009 to work on anti-parasitic drug discovery.
I have helped out on a number of other research projects that have seen me spend 2 months on a desert island tagging endangered birds in the Cape Verdes and more recently jumping off Utes and chasing after Wombats in the Austrailan outback.
Why would you recommend the University of Aberdeen to others?
The University is very welcoming with a rich history in the biological sciences. The city is vibrant and cosmopolitan thanks to the oil industry but the real star is the natural landscapes the doorstep. To the North and East are miles of spectacular beaches and coastal clifftops and to the West are the Grampians and the gateway to the Highlands.
Nowhere else in the UK can you be watching tens of thousands of birds shrieking on a cliff one moment then an hour later be up a mountain watching eagles riding the thermals.