#IAmNYAS: Karin Moelling

Many scientists have fond memories of participating in science fairs as young people. But Karin Moelling, PhD, participated in her first at the age of 70.

#IAmNYAS: Karin Moelling

Academy Member Karin Moelling, PhD, Director Emeritus of the Institute of Medical Virology at the University of Zürich, competed in her first science fair this summer at the age of 70. As one of five invited speakers at this year's Silver Science Slam, Karin presented on the positive impacts of something that many of us have been taught to think of as not very beneficial at all.

Read more about Karin and her exciting projects below:

Can you tell us a bit more about the science fair that you participated in this summer?

The city of Berlin has a center for education that was founded over 150 years ago. This organization, Urania, is now offering their fall lectures in a new format, the Silver Science Slam, which is like a science fair. Silver - because, all of us five invited speakers are well above 50 years old! We have 10 minutes each, and the audience will select the winner. The topic I chose to present is "Without viruses we would not exist," on the positives effects of viruses.

Besides the Silver Science Slam, what other projects have you been working on recently?

Among other publications, I am currently working on the English translation of my German book about viruses that make us fit, not sick. The tentative title is, Friends or Foes? The Superpower World of Viruses. You can view some of material in the book in these YouTube clips for students and school kids.

What's the best piece of career advice you've received over the course of your work?

"If someone steals your data, don't get angry, be proud of it!"

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

Church organ playing. I started playing at a young age and when I became a professor at Zürich University, I was told to forget all my hobbies, that I would not have time for that, you may not even have time to sleep, some said. That was true, however, now that I am retired and have finished writing my book, I practice every night.

Why did you become a Member of the New York Academy of Sciences?

Because of the Academy's interesting programs, up-to-date topics, and efficiency in supporting publications. Moreover, the Academy is inspiring, with nice colleagues, good editors and reviewers. And: I love New York!


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Read other #IAmNYAS profiles here.