Jack McMinn

St Cross NERC Graduate Scholarship

Joining us from: Brighton and Hove, UK

NERC DTP in Environmental Research (2020)

I did my undergraduate studies and an MPhil in Zoology at the University of Cambridge, specialising in mammalogy and palaeontology. After that, I spent a year in London as a science teacher! I hope to do research into the large-scale biogeographical and evolutionary history of mammals in Gondwana, from the Cretaceous to today. I’ve always loved palaeontology, ever since watching ‘Walking with Dinosaurs’ as a child and this project concept always appealed to me! So much isn’t known (in part due to a limited fossil record in Gondwanan continents) and, with modern statistical modelling techniques, we can apply new approaches to old data and get new insights.

I’m very grateful for my St Cross scholarship, as it has helped me to continue doing what I’m passionate about. My goal is to continue my studies to a post-doctorate position and beyond! I enjoy what I do and, as of yet, see no reason to stop. I would also like to apply my skills in some kind of creative path too. I chose St Cross specifically; after 4 years in Emmanuel College in Cambridge, I felt that a cosier setting with a strong community would be better for my post-graduate career. And it is! St Cross is lovely and I’ve had the opportunity to meet so many wonderful students and staff.

Outside of academic pursuits, I’m in the Oxford Revue and do a lot of various comedic and theatrical stuff. I also play piano and saxophone a fair bunch (much to the annoyance of my neighbours at times).