None of the contributions that I have read on this page make any mention of Gregorio's skills as a teacher. I was an undergraduate in Sheffield between 1956 and 1959 and had the extreme good fortune to be taught biophysical chemistry (although it was not called that) by Gregorio. Sheffield in those days was an enormously stimulating department. We had a large number of people from many nations of the world, all of the highest quality: Quentin Gibson head of Department, Gregorio, Vincent Massey from Australia, Theo Hofman from Switzerland. Final Year undergraduates (there were only about 10 of us) had tea every day with staff and technicians in the Scala, the old cinema that in Krebs's day had been taken over by the Biochemistry department.
Gregorio's lectures on protein structure and in particular light absorption and the interaction of proteins as charged particles in solution were amazingly clear and gave me an unbelievably good foundation for understanding of protein structure, although this was not a field in which I worked later on in life.
There was a certain amount of rivalry as well as much co-operation between the Biochemistry and Microbiology departments in Sheffield, and Sidney Elsden was head of the Microbiology department, but not a professor at that stage, also gave us outstanding lectures along with Bernard Fry and John Peel.
Rod Bennett and I used to get tutorials from Maurice Kaye. On one occasion Maurice said that he needed to look at the copy of the University calendar an important paper publication in those days that was difficult to obtain, but he said “ Gregorio has a copy because he is a Reader and Readers get one automatically ” . The astonishing meanness of the University of Sheffield in the fifties never ceased to amaze me. When I became a full-time academic in the University of Hull a few years later, every member of the faculty was given a copy of the University calendar every year. So Gregorio's copy of the calendar was always very much in demand by his colleagues.
Also in my year were Colin Greenwood, Jim Longworth, Malcolm Paynter and Rod Bennett, all of whom stayed in Sheffield to do PhDs: Colin with Quentin Gibson, Jim with Gregorio, Rod with Vince Massey and Malcolm in the Microbiology department. By that time my interests had become more microbiological, and probably to the disappointment of my friends in Sheffield (though no-one ever said so), I followed the trail created a few years earlier by Krebs and left to do a DPhil in his department in Oxford. My interest in microbiology led to me working with Rod Quayle in Krebs's MRC unit, but the thorough and enormously stimulating undergraduate training I had had in Sheffield stood me in great stead for the rest of my career in biochemistry, and Gregorio played a major role in the early days of that. Curiously enough, after I had left Oxford, Rod Quayle went there as Senior Lecturer in Biochemistry and later succeeded Sidney Elsden as West Riding Professor of Microbiology.
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| Gregorio Weber in Cambridge | The First Floor | Memories | Reminiscences | Gregorio Weber at Cambridge | Friendship Renewed in Sheffield | Gregorio Weber, friend and mentor | Gregorio Weber: Some recollections | Appreciation | Recollections of Gregorio | Gregorio | "Stay in Sheffield": Gregorio's Sage Advice | Gregorio as Teacher | Golden Age | Memories of the Biochemistry Department Sheffield, 1961 | My Best of Times: With Gregorio in Sheffield and Urbana 1954-1964 | Weber Memoir | A Roman Connection | My Mentor at Urbana, Rome, Corvallis | Gregorio Weber, A Great Gentleman of Science | Fond Memories | Two Memories in Parallel | A Superb Interaction | An Appreciation | Short snippets |