Pupils from Craigour Park Primary School in Edinburgh interviewed some of our staff and PhD students about their research. In this article, they quiz PhD student Stewart Gault about bacteria, aliens, and what he likes doing in his spare time.
Describe your job in a few words.
I work in a lab.
How do you find out if there are bacteria on a meteorite?
100s of meteorites fall on earth. You then collect them and use a microscope to see if there are bacteria on it.
What did you want to be before you became a scientist?
Before I became a scientist, I wanted to be a sprinter, because I was really into doing athletics.
Do you believe that there is alien life out there?
Yes! I do!
What challenges have you overcome to get to where you are today?
It took a lot of hard work in school and moving away from the family was hard. Leaving your family and friends behind, and your grandparents – it is very challenging.
What is your favourite part of Scotland?
The Highlands. Anywhere with mountains really. They are really beautiful. I like walking, climbing and sailing.
If you could decide your pizza toppings, what would they be?
Chicken, sweetcorn and red pepper. That would be the perfect pizza!
What is the favourite country that you have visited and why?
My favourite country to visit is Austria. I love the mountains there and it’s a wonderful place for skiing. Where I would like to go next? I would like to visit Canada.
Can you tell us a fact about your research that will WOW us?
There are twice as many bacteria cells than body cells in you. So think of yourself as one big body of bacteria.
What do you like more – basketball or football?
Football. However, my brother is better than me.
If you could give any advice for someone wanting to become a scientist, what would that advice be?
School is important. Study hard! You’ve got to try and tick all the boxes. Science is important, and it is fun, so do what you enjoy and if you enjoy it, you will find it easier. Do what makes you happy and work hard.
Links and resources
- Check out all our Craigour Park Primary School interviews.
- Read more about this project with Craigour Park Primary School, Edinburgh.
- Learn more about Stewart’s research.