Becoming a Zoologist a “Ridiculous” Idea? Not for Nobel Prize Winner John Gurdon
For John Gurdon, his future as a zoologist seemed in doubt in 1949 as a schoolmaster at Eton College wrote on his report card that becoming a scientist would be “quite ridiculous”. In fact, the schoolmaster went on to say his performance was so bad that it would be a sheer waste of time to both teach him and expect that he would come anywhere near his dream.
“If he can’t learn simple biological facts he would have no change of doing the work of a specialist…”
Interestingly enough, Gurdon spent his time studying the classics at Oxford before switching to zoology at Cambridge. In 1962, he demonstrated that DNA from particular frogs, such as the skin and intestinal cells, could be used to create new tadpoles. His researched resulted in a 2012 Nobel Prize in Medicine, an award he shared with Shinya Yamanaka of Japan.
Zoology in Your Future
Given the dour outlook from his teacher at Eton College back in 1949, Gurdon’s experience shows that anyone who is determined and wants to get a zoologist education can overcome the odds and get the education they need to realize their dream.
In fact, zoology is a thriving science that offers many opportunities for those who complete the educational requirements and excel in the field.
What is a Zoologist?
A Zoologist is essentially a biologist that is dedicated to study the characteristics, functions, structures, environments and ecology of animals. The purpose is to increase the scientific knowledge we have of animals as well as developing applications towards better wildlife management, medicine, agriculture and conservation as well.
Zoology is a broad field that covers many different specializations, including the study of ecology, insects, parasites, ethology or the behavior of animals, fish, mammals, reptiles, birds and the function of animals as well.
Those who have an interest in helping animals and the environment in general are strong candidates for a zoologist education. As the concern over our environment deepens with each passing generation, the need for zoologists becomes more profound. This is a career opportunity that offers job security, good salary and upward mobility for those who want to advance their career.
The Educational Requirements of Zoology
A good foundation of subjects is important in educational process, including biology, chemistry and rural studies to name a few related subjects. A good background in science is important to prepare you for getting a college degree in zoologist education.
A four-year or bachelor’s degree is generally required for Zoology with an emphasis on a particular field. A masters or doctorate may be required later depending on your interest and chances for advancement. For those who plan on making Zoology a career, it is important to look over the options first in order to properly plan and get the degree and experience needed in order to land the job you want.
In addition to field work there are also plenty of research opportunities as well. For those who plan well, getting a zoologist education can be an exciting and rewarding adventure which provides the opportunity to study and work in many different places so you can expand your skills and broaden your horizons.