Learning

Famous Scientists That Never Went to University

It can often seem that to even enter a field like science you must complete University with at least a 2:1, these scientists not only broke that trend but became greats without even stepping into a university.

Michael Faraday

Faraday is perhaps the most publicized scientist to never seek higher education. The British scientist was instrumental in the concept of the electromagnetic field and his experiments in electricity helped create the practical use we have today.  In a rather inspiration tale of perseverance Faraday only ever received the most basic of education and was instead forced to educate himself. This did not hinder his growth and still remains one of Britain’s most famous scientists, he has several statues dotted around London and he even has a plague in Westminster abbey.

Gregor Mendel

It would not be an overstatement to suggest that Mendel should be declared as the father of genetics as we know it. This was not always meant to be as due to financial and health reasons Mendel was forced to drop out of Palacký University in his first year. However, this did not hinder him, and he instead found an education in a monastery, as though this education was rather basic it was free. Mendel would use this education to discover and further study both `recessive` and `dominant` genes in plants, and then eventually humans. His work is still used and taught to this day.

Humphrey Davy

It is quite an interesting fact that at one point in time Davy`s lab assistant was the great Faraday with both men receiving no higher education, Davy once even joked that his greatest discovery was Faraday. This does discount the great work that Davy actually did manage to accomplish, just like his protégé Davy was an expert in the electric field, but he is most commonly known for his popularization of nitrous oxide as pain relief in surgery. Davy also invented the Davy lamp which should be seen as the predecessor to the arc lamp. Davy was known for his dry sense of humor and poetry along with his scientific accomplishments, a true great of British history.

James Croll

The great James Croll was actually one of the first mainstream climate scientist. Coming from the Scottish midlands Croll tried to create a link between the orbit of the earth and climate change. His work was highly revolutionary at the time and he would often collaborate with the great Charles Darwin. Croll never received any form of education often having to rely on books he found in his family’s attic, and in a rather ironic twist of fate, despite being self-educated all his life in 1876 Croll received an honorary degree from the prestigious University of St. Andrews.

Thomas Edison

To take this passage state side we should take a look at perhaps the most famous American inventor be it that of Thomas Edison. It is said that throughout his life Edison filed for 1093 patents on his inventions, this included film, the phonograph and perhaps most famously the incandescent light bulb. Despite this list of amazing inventions Edison only actually received a few months of formal education, and mainly relied on his mother and books he would finds in his home. This did not stop the great Edison as he was once quoted as saying “Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.” This quote truly sums up his nature and why he became the success he is, to find other inspirational quotes like this I would highly recommend checking powerful life quotes which documents inspirational and powerful quotes from some of histories greats.

Wright Brothers

This may shock many due to the confusing nature of flight, but the inventors in the Wright brothers never actually graduated from high school but managed to complete their first flight in the winter of 1903. The brothers actually credited there time out of the mainstream education system in achieving their great feet, as it allowed them to truly think outside the box. Both mischievous young boys they would be expelled from their elementary school though they received great scorn at the time, this would prove to be a true blessing in disguise.

After this passage I hope all young thinkers are filled with some new found hope, if these greats could achieve without the use of university, you can too. Just try think outside the box, and remember perseverance is your number one strength.

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