At the age of 89 he obtained a doctorate in physics. It is the incredible story of the man in the United States, Manfred Steiner, who thus managed to make his dream come true. The man reached his milestone a few days ago, defending his thesis at Brown University in Providence, in the state of Rhode Island. “I’ve always wanted to be a physicist,” he said.
His childhood in Vienna and then his medical degree
Steiner had this dream in the drawer but, due to choices made in his youth (also to support the family) and health problems, he had not yet managed to realize it. What made him passionate about physics, when he was still a boy and lived in Vienna, were the readings by Albert Einstein and Max Planck. But at the end of the Second World War, his mother and an uncle convinced him to study medicine, thinking it could guarantee them a more secure future. Moving to the United States, Steiner studied hematology at Tufts University and biochemistry at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, before becoming a hematologist at Brown University. He became a full professor and headed the hematology section of Brown’s medical school from 1985 to 1994.
The dream come true
After teaching for years, Steiner then decided to get back on the books and brush up on his old but dormant passion for physics. At Abc News he launched his “manifesto”: do what you love. “Pursue your dreams otherwise one day you may regret not having done so.”