Unique Scientist: Tony Thomson

Time to meet Tony Thomson (He/him)! Tony is a Professional science communicator and developer in the United Kingdom!

What kind of scientist are you?

Professional science communicator/developer and founder of up-and-coming not-for-profit organization (soon to be charity) Thompson STEM Engagement.

Self-professed mad scientist!

What made you want to become a scientist?
Childhood obsession with all things science, in particular zoology and paleontology (passions which have never been lost), but without neglecting love affairs with physics and chemistry.

“[I am a] Self-professed mad scientist!”

Tony Thompson

What makes you a #UniqueScientist?
High-functioning (from an outside perspective at least) autism, a long history of depression and coupled with being a typically muscular, hairy celt. Not people’s usual perspective of a scientist.

What’s something cool you do outside of work?
Outside of working full time as a science communicator for a science discovery centre, I run TSE. Spend much of my time designing and building our equipment. Aside from that, typical nerdy hobbies and interests!

If you had one wish and could change anything in science, what would it be?
 That academia and hiring institutions recognize that certain mental conditions cause added pressure within certain situations. If somebody interviews well this has proven only that they interview well and not that they are necessarily the best for the job and perhaps a candidate whose condition may put them at a disadvantage could possibly be better suited.

“If somebody interviews well this has proven only that they interview well and not that they are necessarily the best for the job and perhaps a candidate whose condition may put them at a disadvantage could possibly be better suited.”

Tony Thompson

Who has inspired you the most in your journey to where you are now?
As a child, conservationist science communicators: Attenborough, Irwin… the list goes on. As an adult, the late Profesor John Beetlestone (whose philosophy I try to preserve in my work) and of course my wonderful fiance – the soon-to-be Doctor Rosie Cane, PhD -who is my rock, my one woman support network and a talented astronomer and astrobiology researcher in her own right (and famed R2-D2 fangirl).

Let’s end on a high note! What’s something you’ve done this week that you’re proud of?
Submitted some big grant applications which will hopefully end up being the beginnings of some amazing TSE projects!


#AutismInSTEM #MadScientist

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