Diana Samuel

Favourite Thing: We currently have 12 tree frogs in the lab. I love working with them, as each has his own character (with names to match!).



St Dunstan’s College, 1997-2004.


University of Manchester, 2005-2009. I studied Biology (Bachelor’s degree) and Biomechanics (Master’s degree).

Work History:

I took a gap year after school and worked for the Home Office, and during my Bachelor’s I worked in restaurants and for the City Council.


University of Glasgow

Current Job:

PhD student

Me and my work

I’m working towards discovering the mechanisms used by tree and torrent frogs to stick to surfaces, and why torrent frogs perform much better than tree frogs in very wet conditions.

My Typical Day

I’ll arrive at university in the morning, and make sure the frogs are ok. I’ll then split my day between carrying out experiments and analyzing the results on my computer.

What I'd do with the money

I’d like to create an online resource, dedicated to introducing students to the fields of biomechanics (which is kind of the physics behind biology) and biomimetics (developing something by taking inspiration from nature), focussing mainly on frogs. The resource will be both educational (demonstrations of key principles, videos showing why frogs are a good model for making new adhesives etc) and informative (reasons to consider studying science at university, links to institutions that may be willing to invite students to do internships etc).

My Interview

How would you describe yourself in 3 words?

Honest, competitive, quirky

Who is your favourite singer or band?

At the minute, Lykke Li

What is the most fun thing you've done?


If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!

A better balance in the world (greater respect for the environment, less of a rich-poor divide etc); To visit every country in the world; To be taller.

What did you want to be after you left school?

An interior designer

Were you ever in trouble in at school?

Occasionally, because I used to be really lazy about doing homework – I’d never finish it in time!

What's the best thing you've done as a scientist?

Last summer, I spent 6 weeks in Borneo studying different tree and torrent frogs in their natural environment – it was amazing.

Tell us a joke.