The Secret Life of Plants
Transplanted from my native Moscow to the mountains of Colombia, I was astounded by the rich profusion of plant life that surrounded me – but also dismayed by the lack of investment in science. I reacted by rocking the status quo and dedicated my life’s work to building up advanced analytical capability and teaching good science – all while exploring the complex chemistry of the country’s native flora and harnessing its potential for the agro-industry.
Elena Stashenko |
I was born in Moscow, Russia, and was the only child of parents who were also only children; we were a very small family. My mother was a chemist, and my father was a physicist and lawyer – an expert in ballistics. With two scientist–parents, I passed through childhood between books and test tubes, and learned discipline, the conviction of the superiority of reason, and the importance of science for the progress of humanity. Although we didn’t have a lot of money, I never lacked for books or culture (we often visited museums, theaters, exhibitions). The example of my parents – their love for science and reading, their responsible and dedicated work – was a defining influence both in my ideals and the path that my life took in science.
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About the Author
Elena Stashenko is Director, Research Center for Biomolecules - CIBIMOL Research Center of Excellence, CENIVAM Universidad Industrial de Santander Bucaramanga, Colombia.