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Necessarity of being a prodigy for successful career in Physics

  1. Feb 10, 2014 #1
    Necessarity of being a "prodigy" for successful career in Physics

    I'm just curious about one thing. I want to be a Theoretical Particle Physicist in future. And there is a one thing that stops me from choosing that path in my life.

    Is it necessary to be a kind of mathematical/physics prodigy to do things that really matter? I mean, can I get to the same heights as prof. Edward Witten, for example, by just hard work and passion to physics and mathematics?

    Thanks a lot!
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 10, 2014 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Welcome to PF;


    Yes. In principle.

    Though there is no "just" about it.
    And there is a lot of luck involved.

    There is no harm in getting involved in science to make a big name for yourself, but that should not be all that is on your mind. Science is a calling rather than a profession. You either feel strongly drawn to it or you don't.

    Some prodigies seem to get the calling at an early age but most that I've actually met suffer from a lack of direction and tend not to get very far. Beware of drawing conclusions from a limited data set.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2014
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