Jelena KošćukBy Expect Everything Contributor from Serbia
Jelena Košćuk,
from Petro Kuzmjak Highchool, Ruski Krstur, Serbia

I want to present you Ivana Budinski, a successful biology scientist and a former student of our “Petro Kuzmjak” high school. She has an unusual passion for bats, and that is her field of research. In our interview, we explore how she experience being a female scientist.

Ivana Budinski

When did you realize that you wanted to be a biologist and research bats?

I was interested in the living world around us in an early age. In the sixth grade of elementary school, I realized how much biology attracts me. In the second grade of high school, when I visited Petnica, the research centre for young people, I fell in love with bats.

Why bats?

Maybe it is hard to believe, but bats are special, mystical and specific animals. There are many interesting facts about them. For example, every night they eat the equivalent of a third of their weight. No one probably knows, but research about bats may help finding cure for human autoimmune diseases.

Where do you work and what is your job?

I work at the Biological institute in Belgrade. My department is mainly engaged in research of yellow-necked mouse. Lately, I am mostly focused on writing a PhD thesis about one kind of bat and that is why I am constantly on the field for collecting material. I often go into caves and other inaccessible places to follow the migration, reproduction and behavior of bats. I am studying population genetics and migration of bats. Bats are nocturnal animals and we often need to spend the night awake. Sometimes it’s really tiring and hard work but in the end it is all worthwhile.

Why do you like your job?

-My job offers me an opportunity to travel. I have traveled through Europe and met many interesting, smart people who like science. I have exchanged experiences with them. I am always in motion and always learning.

Can you tell us something about your awards?

I was honored the best student in elementary and high school, and the best student in generation at the faculty at the University of Novi Sad. After the second year of faculty, I got IAESTE 6 weeks practice in England. During my doctoral studies, I received a scholarship Erasmus + and spent 5 months in Italy.

About the author

Jelena Košćuk is 16 years old. She lives in Kula and goes to third class at high school Petro Kuzmjak in Ruski Krstur, Serbia. Jelena is found of her school where she feels at home and has great friends. In her spare time, she likes to play sports and enjoy nature. He biggest wish is to travel around the world.