Richard Culleton knew he wanted to study at Edinburgh University when he exited his train at Waverley Station and still loves the city just as much now.
Richard Leighton Culleton
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Your time at the University
During my A-level studies in Neath, South Wales, I visited a number of universities throughout Britain in order to find a suitable location and course for further studies. Most of the university towns I visited in England were very similar, but as soon as I got off the train at Waverley, I knew Edinburgh was special and that it was where I wanted to study.
As a Welshman, it was an easy decision to bypass England and move to Scotland! The city is incredible, and the university first-class. I ended up living there for 10 years, throughout my BSc degree, on to a PhD and for a year or two as a post-doc, and I never got bored of it.
Ten years after living in the city, I can still vividly remember those incredibly long, glorious summer evenings, and misty, gothic, atmospheric dark dark night winter nights. I’ve travelled extensively since this time, and I can honestly say that Edinburgh would still be my number one choice if I had to start all over again.
The education I received at Edinburgh has been vital to my career. The quality of the teaching I received during my BSc was immense, and the experience, enthusiasm and guidance that were passed on during my post-graduate degree were priceless.
Tell us about your Experiences since leaving the University
I am currently Associate Professor and head of the Department of Pathology at Nagasaki University’s Institute of Tropical Medicine. My career path following graduation from Edinburgh with BSc in Zoology was fairly straightforward; first, a PhD at Edinburgh University, followed by a short period of post-doctoral research in the same department. I then received a fellowship to continue my research at Osaka University in Japan, and two years later I embarked on a tenure-track research programme at Nagasaki University’s Institute of Tropical Medicine. I achieved tenure within four years, and I’m now happily carrying on my research, which is based on the work I started at Edinburgh University during my PhD.
The education I received at Edinburgh has been vital to my career. The quality of the teaching I received during my BSc was immense, and the experience, enthusiasm and guidance that were passed on during my post-graduate degree were priceless. It has now been 10 years since I left Edinburgh, and I’m still actively working with many researchers at the University, and so I’m still benefitting from the quality research that is carried out there.
Try and follow what you are interested in, rather than what you think you should be interested in, or what you think might lead to the most lucrative career. It’s the best way to be happy with what you’re doing, and the happiest route is the right route. Work hard though. Oh, and try not to compare yourself to others too much, there’s no point. And don’t be afraid of asking questions, even if they seem naïve or foolish. That’s all.
Last updated: July 2015