Stephen William Hawking, a renowned British theoretical physicist, mathematician and cosmologist, was born in Oxford, England on 8th January 1942. His father, Frank and mother, Isobel were both well-educated. Both of them attended the Oxford University where Frank studied medicine and Isobel studied Philosophy, Economics and Politics.
Hawking studied at the St. Alban’s School and attended Oxford University for higher education. He entered the University in the year 1959. While Hawking’s father wanted him to study medicine, he had an inclination towards mathematics and physics. Though he was not a brilliant student in school as well as university, his ability to understand and grasp physics and mathematical concepts were appreciated. His interest in physics grew further as he studied the subject at the Oxford University. He scored well in the subject. He was keen on studying about the laws of energy and matter. He often broke open devices such as radio and kitchen appliances to understand how they worked.
Thereafter, Hawking enrolled for post graduation at the Cambridge University. It was here that he studied Cosmology. He also incurred the Lou Gehrig disease during this time. This disease weakened his nervous system and he was soon confined to wheelchair. However, this did not dither him from pursuing his course. His interest and ability was recognized at the university and everyone around encouraged him to study despite his disease. He received his doctorate degree in 1966. He then got involved in research in the field of cosmology at the Cambridge University. Hawking’s contribution in the field of cosmology has been remarkable. He had a knack in exploring the mysteries of the universe and brought-forth various theories related to the universe’ structure and origin. His work in the field of physics and theoretical astronomy has also been recognized.
In the year 1974, Hawking became a fellow of the Royal Society of London. He was eventually named to a chair at Cambridge. The chair was once held by the 17th century mathematician and astronomer, Sir Isaac Newton. Hawking’s theories were widely accepted and he came to be known as one of the best scientists in the world by the end of the twentieth century. He was bestowed with various honorary degrees and awards for his contribution in the field of science.
Hawking died a peaceful death in Cambridge on 14th March 2018 at the age of 76. Hawking’s life is an inspiration. Even after incurring major physical illness he kept moving towards his goal and achieved great heights professionally.