“Retirement means freedom to see more of the world.”
Participant since 2012
Get to know Brian Fisher
Brian travels the world collecting and studying ants
View From the Top
Brian (V.O.): I grew up in the Midwest and from an early age I just wanted to be outside. I realized that science offered the best avenue for me to explore. And with my first trip to the tropics, I was impressed with the ants. And since then, I've been studying ants all over the world. In 2008 I met my wife and we started a family. Anna who's almost 5 years old and Pedro who's 10.
Brian: You ready?
Brian (V.O.): To be a scientist you have to travel a lot and we look at traveling as a great gift for the family in that we can bring our kids so they experience all these worlds.
Brian: They're the famous black ants.
Anna: 1, 2, 3, 4…
Brian (V.O): My kids think it's natural to be interested in science and that's really what I want to teach them is that it's okay to pursue a career where you enjoy it.
Brian: This entire collection represents my life work. 99% of these half a million ants are ants I collected. And I spent 28 years of working and mounting to prepare this collection.
Brian (V.O.): What I like about my job is that I get to be a kid forever and never lose that enthusiasm to go to a new mountain, a new rainforest, and to explore. When you see these beautiful places you can't help but want to protect them. And as a scientist I feel an obligation to help save these forests. There's a long term reason for living and it's our children. We need to think of them and preserve what is left.
Anna: Let's go!
Brian (V.O): My whole life has been about the next adventure, the next trip, the next discovery. And you forget that you have to plan for your future, and children all of sudden remind you of that.
Brian (V.O.): When I retire I'll still be a scientist, I'll be studying the same questions, I'll be exploring and teaching. So for me retirement is not being a sense of burden to my children and having the freedom to continue exploring the world which is what I love.