Paul Sanberg at ANU in the late 1970s. Photo supplied.

Paul Sanberg at ANU in the late 1970s. Photo supplied.

Alumni Then and Now: Paul Sanberg, PhD ’81, DSc ’98

It was a bold decision to travel from the US to Canberra in the late 1970s but PAUL SANBERG was attracted Down Under for one thing.

"I chose ANU for its strong neuroscience program. It was, and still is, one of the leading institutions in the world for neuroscience," he says.

While the trip was long, it wasn't completely into the unknown.

Sanberg had come across the reputation of ANU for a high-quality science education while at university in Canada.

While studying at the University of British Columbia during the 1970s, Sanberg attended lectures by ANU-based Nobel Laureate Sir John Eccles AC.

Sanberg was inspired by Sir John, who recommended that he apply to ANU and move to Australia for his PhD.

With the help of a number of "great mentors", including Professor Richard Freeman Mark, Sanberg took to life in the Australian capital well and excelled at his PhD studies.

"Richard, the chair of my department, valued the experience that I had and brought to ANU and he let me work on my own in many ways, independently, almost like a postdoctoral researcher," he says.

"He encouraged me to develop and grow. He gave me my own lab and allowed me to explore my creativity in science."