I just joined the forums here, after reading through several pages of incredibly useful advice. I'm mostly beginning this thread to organize my thoughts, but I'm in need/want of advice at all times during this process. You all are knowledgeable and helpful, so any commentary is appreciated. I'm a 26 year old "nontrad" student at the junior level in a state university. My high school academics were very good, but that was a long time ago by now. I'm still confident and committed to following the physics career path. Just a little concerned that I might run into a few special challenges, about which I'm totally unaware at the moment. My current semi-solid plan is to continue with a B.S. in physics, and pursue the phD with a concentration in astrophysics. This was originally because I read several reports about the unemployment rate being nonexistent, and also because it's something I've always wanted to do. The conversations here are honestly the first glimpse I've had into the real-world idea that astrophysics degrees most likely do not lead to astrophysics careers. I've made peace with that idea (I think- still room for debate), but now I need a little help moving on from there. I still want to fulfill my dream to study and "be" and astrophysicist, even if my profession ends with something in the finance sector or the like. I just need to know that I've got a flexible but solid plan for when I graduate if I'm going to dive into this field without that 0% unemployment guarantee as an astrophysicist (as previously whispered to me through USA Today articles and other sweet fairy tales). I'm interested in writing, I would be interested in finance if the pay is comparable, and I'm also open to any suggestion. My childhood and young-adult background hasn't given me much first-person experience with industry or high-level careers, so anything that would help me visualize what I'm getting myself into would be so very much appreciated.