Many of the world’s most exceptional minds owe their talent to exceptional teachers. The official website of the Nobel Prizes has posted a series of short videos on its homepage featuring “Nobel Laureates about their Teachers – Heroes behind Past, Present, and Future Nobel Prizes”.
These “heroes” have helped the laureates in different ways. Some (as in Oliver Smithies’ case) inspired them. Others (like Malala Yousafzai’s) taught them to believe in themselves and be brave.
Two videos feature anecdotes about particularly wonderful teachers.
When Martinus Veltman did his final high school exam, one of his educators cycled to the other end of town and told his student’s parents that he should study tertiary-level physics. Without this generous act, the laureate says, he would not have ended up receiving a Nobel Prize.
One of Eric Kandel’s high school teachers (John Campagna) encouraged him to apply for admission to Harvard University. However, his parents could not afford to pay for the application. “And so I told that to Mr Campagna,” the laureate says, “and he gave me the money to apply to Harvard.”