• Question: For one to be a scientist is it a must to do physics? In your work place what do you enjoy most?

    Asked by Mariana to Priscilla, Mel, Jay Oty, Dorcas, Chapa on 30 Sep 2014.
    • Photo: Priscilla Ngotho

      Priscilla Ngotho answered on 30 Sep 2014:

      Hi Mariana,

      From my own experience not necessarily. For example I am a biologist. I needed a very strong biological background. Everything else I have learnt from my job, including bioinformatics and statistics. A scientist is always learning. No one expects you to know everything. But because of the nature of science, you get to learn a lot of things including things that you were not good at in high school. And as you work and apply the knowledge you have gained even the things that used to be difficult in school become easier and more fun. I wasn’t very good at Chemistry but now I use it everyday in my work so it has become easy and very natural.

      What i really like about my work is I get the chance to study pathogens (disease causing agents) in this case malaria, to find out how they grow, feed and survive in our bodies. This will help us learn how they can be prevented from invading our bodies, or how to kill them once they are inside our bodies. I also like working with a group of very clever and creative people who are very nice and friendly. I get to travel to different countries because the science community is an international one, where i learn different scientific techniques, different cultures and ways of life. but the best part is I get the chance to make a difference in the world. I get to answer relevant scientific questions about diseases that affect our communities, I get hanse to mentor young upcoming future scientists like yourselves, and I get build research capacity in our country.

      I hope some of you will join us.

    • Photo: Dorcas Kamuya

      Dorcas Kamuya answered on 30 Sep 2014:

      Hi marianna,
      There are various types of scientists some do their research based on principles and knowledges of basic science subjects such as physics, biology, chemistry. Others like me, draw on social science subjects such as sociology, psychology, to understand human behaviours. It’ important to have basic knowledge of physics because it is useful in understanding many of the scientific discoveries.

      There are many things I enjoy in my work. One of these is hearing different perspectives of an issue that is controversial, and then trying to make sense of all these different perspectives. I also get to travel lot to different places of the world to discuss and present findings of my work.

      Another wonderful thing about being a researcher is the opportunity to persue something that you are interested in, the freedom to do so, including being your own boss is really exciting. Also there are very many people all over the world who value your work as a researcher, and are willing to give you advice.