Add a solid science background to just about any area to get the recipe for an unbelievable career as an innovator and leader.
Combining your interests with science skills opens up more career pathways than you could ever imagine. Whether you’re into fashion or fitness, acrobatics or astrophysics, gorillas or flotillas – a career in science could take you anywhere.
Science careers are massively diverse – from forensic science, solving crimes and uncovering old mysteries, to the huge endeavours behind planned manned and unmanned missions to Mars and beyond.
Scientists craft new food sources and design ‘smart’ fashion fabrics – like the interactive textiles of Project Jacquard that let you control devices through your clothes using touch and gesture.
“The world is rapidly changing, and Australia is in a unique position to shape its future,” wrote ANU Professor Brian Schmidt in 2011, after he had won the Nobel Prize in Physics. He added that the key to a successful future for Australia was investment in education, science and technology.
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Science careers in nanobionics, wildlife and astronomy
You might be drawn to the fascinating world of nanobionics – like Professor Gordon Wallace, whose research at the University of Wollongong includes developing an inkjet printer that can ‘print’ polymers, or ‘smart plastics’. These polymers can conduct electrical impulses in the same way human nerves do, and could lead to the repair of damaged spinal cords.
Maybe you’re more interested in wildlife conservation: like biologist and former zookeeper/ curator Leif Cocks (above), who is at the forefront of saving the critically endangered orangutan in South-East Asia as president of the Orangutan Project.
“I get to work with a fantastic and dedicated team that is making meaningful achievements for both conservation and animal welfare,” he says. Leif regularly treks through forests in Borneo and Sumatra and works for habitat protection as well as the rescue, rehabilitation and release of orangutans.
Or perhaps you have stars in your eyes? If you’re into storytelling and fascinated by astronomy, your career could resemble that of Dr Tanya Hill. She began as a PhD student finding supermassive black holes in far-away galaxies, and now manages the Melbourne Planetarium, where she works with astronomers and physicists to bring astronomical findings to life.
“I work with amazing researchers and help them share their incredible discoveries,” says Tanya, whose shows have toured more than 50 countries.
Whatever path you choose and wherever your science career takes you, this is one industry in which you’ll have a great shot at changing the world for the better.
Start your science careers journey now! Find out more about a Bachelor of Science in nanotechnology at the University of Wollongong, read about the Orangutan Project or visit Melbourne Planetarium for a trip to the stars!
– Fran Molloy