Five questions to Leonie Weber

 

Question 1

What fascinates you most about natural sciences?

Methods! I find it fascinating how we use for example enzymes for our purposes in the laboratory to answer increasingly complex questions. We work with molecules that we cannot see and start reactions that we cannot observe. If we have done everything right, the enzymes reliably do what we expect them to do.

 

"…the female lecturer came into the lecture hall in a leather vest, cowboy hat and boots and showed me with her great lecture how exciting botany is."

Question 2

Why did you decide to become a scientist? Is there a person or an episode that sparked your interest in science?

Biology was already the subject that fascinated me the most in school. It quickly became clear to me that I wanted to study biology, but at the beginning of my bachelor's degree I still wanted to be a zoologist. In the second semester we had the first real botany lecture and the female lecturer came into the lecture hall in a leather vest, cowboy hat and boots and showed me with her great lecture how exciting botany is.

 

"Have the courage to ask others for help!"

Question 3

What advice would you give young women considering science as a career path?

Have the courage to ask others for help! Whether you are an undergraduate, graduate student, or postdoc, you will never know everything or be able to do everything. In the labs and among students, everyone is usually happy to share their knowledge and experience. Even one good tip can solve weeks of problems in the lab.

Question 4

What part of your daily work as a scientist do you enjoy the most?

I've been doing a lot of bioinformatics lately. I can spend hours working on a script or a bioinformatics problem and dig deep into the problem until I solve it.

Question 5

What's your favorite thing to do after work?

In my free time I like to go horseback riding. Once a week I go to Fischenich and ride Charlie, a 20-year-old white horse with whom I have a lot of fun. I have spent my summer vacation for many years helping with the children's riding vacations at a horse farm in Brandenburg. Mucking out stables and giving riding lessons are the perfect way for me to recharge my batteries.

Profile

Name:

Leonie Weber

Position:

Research Associate, Institute for Plant Sciences, University of Cologne

In CEPLAS since: 

2021

Place of birth:

Ehingen (Donau), Germany

Heinrich Heine University
University of Cologne
Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research
Forschungszentrum Jülich