May Young was born in China in 1912, the daughter of missionaries from Australia, and was fluentin spoken and written Chinese. She attended the University of Melbourne in 1931 and transferred tothe University of Edinburgh a year later where she obtained her first degree in Zoology in 1935. Shealso obtained a Scottish Education Certificate and Cambridge Teaching Diploma. After a few years ofteaching, she registered for a higher degree at the University of London and in 1937 began as agraduate student at the School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Dr. Young completed her Ph.D.studies in 1939 and spent the war years as a research parasitologist studying Trichinella inchildren.
She moved to The University of Nottingham's Zoology Department to become a lecturer in 1944 andher undergraduate teaching there concentrated on invertebrates and parasitic worms and flukes.Through her interest in flukes in freshwater fish she became closely associated with the FreshwaterBiological Station at Lake Windermere. She was an active member of the British Society ofParasitology for her interests in the ecology and taxonomy of fish parasites. She organised theSociety's meeting when it came to Nottingham in 1974. She retired from teaching in 1976 and died on14 January 1981.
Dr Young was an active member of the Nottinghamshire Trust for Nature Conservation, and a councilmember from 1969. She was also active in the Lincolnshire Trust for Nature Conservation and theSociety for the Promotion of Nature Reserves, which acted as the national association of countytrusts for nature conservation.