John Meech is a Non-Executive Director & Volunteer. In answering the STEM NOW Q&A, John takes us on his journey from a nine-year-old boy excitedly unwrapping a microscope for Christmas, to an accomplished scientist, working in the health Industry...
What do you enjoy about being a STEM Ambassador and why?
JM: Having had a long career in science that has led to senior commercial roles in the health sciences I want to share the experience and show that working in science can lead one to many places.
What has been your best moment during your time as a STEM Ambassador so far and why?
JM: Seeing young people compete in teams to design and build a model. Sounds simple but it is inspiring how the youngsters pull together and create something.
Can you remember what first sparked your curiosity in science and how this has led you to where you are today?
JM: My parents bought me a microscope for Christmas when I was about nine or ten. It opened up a world that was fascinating to me. The next year I received a chemistry set and I was off into science from that moment.
What advice would you give to a young person considering a future in STEM?
JM: Stick at it, pick a subject you enjoy- work hard and the world will open up!
Which field of STEM interests you the most/tell us about your particular specialism?
JM: My particular interest is the health and life sciences. I started life as a chemist working at small scale with radioisotopes to make tracers for medical research and moved up and into commercial roles as collaborations with customers interested me most.
Who has inspired you during your STEM journey and why?
JM: My first boss- he taught me how to learn and inspired life-long learning, before that phrase was a cliche.
Why is diversity and inclusion in STEM fields important?
JM: The world is facing huge problems with the climate emergency, antibiotic resistance and challenges of artificial intelligence. To deal with the challenges ideas are needed from all backgrounds, nations and demographics. Only science will solve the problems so diversity follows.
What are your aspirations for the future?
JM: To inspire the next generation and give something back.