I feel like this forum has plenty of people asking for career advice, but perhaps not enough people posting about their journey and the choices they made. To that end.... I joined PF in 2004 when I was a senior in high school. I was taking AP Calculus at the time and found the forums to be a valuable resource for homework help as well as to quench my general curiosity about a variety of scientific topics. I was instantly hooked, and although my post count over the years has been low, it's only because I did far more reading than posting. I graduated high school and got into a decent college, where I was majoring in math. I was still continually using the forums, and I took a few physics classes along with my in-major courses. As the math courses progressed, I realized they weren't for me- I enjoyed the applied math in my physics courses much more. After reading some advice on PF, I decided to switch my major to physics with a math minor (which was already finished). I graduated in 2009 with my BA with honors in physics and a minor in math. At that point, I was under the (wrong) impression that I would probably be able to find a job with just my bachelors. I had some lab experience from my capstone project, but other than that I didn't have any real, applicable work history or internships that I could use to my advantage. It was at this time that I found the career section on PF- I sure wish I had found it sooner. The job market in 2009 was quite bad so competition was fierce: if I could go back and do it over, I would have had a physics internship EVERY SINGLE SUMMER of my undergrad career. Everyone should take this to heart: get relevant internships as early as possible. If you plan on working, those lines on your resume will get you the job. If you want to go to grad school, they will help get you admitted. As it was, I decided to just go back to school like many other people nowadays. I didn't feel ready for the commitment of a PhD, so I applied to get my MS in physics. I started in January of 2010, and again I found PF to be a valuable resource. I used it to get help on advanced homework problems, read career advice, compare schools, measure job prospects, and do countless other things. I finally finished my thesis and graduated with my MS in May, 2012. I was initially very excited about continuing work on my thesis and pursuing a PhD. My thesis had been on Conformal Field Theory applications to the Ising Model, and although it was just a literature review, I felt well prepared to dive in to some original work. After some conflict, I decided I should explore the job market again while applying to the PhD program. Almost immediately, I was finding jobs that I was qualified for that excited me! My experience with computer programming (which I had pursued on the side after reading PF) ended up being a plus for almost every single job I applied for. Even if you just love pure math, or physics, learning a programming language will help you immensely. I was never an expert in any language, but I learned Java and MATLAB well enough to use for most problems, and this ended up helping a lot. I had two months until the PhD program would start (and I wouldn't even be notified if I got in until a month before) so I decided to temporarily move to Cambridge, MA with my friend to turn the job hunt into overdrive. Although risky, this was a great decision- Cambridge has a ton of companies hiring people with advanced science degrees. If you're able to go to where the jobs are, I would recommend taking that chance. I got some interviews for positions I was very excited about, my presentations went well, and I ended up taking my first choice job as a Content Specialist at MathWorks. This ended up easily trumping my PhD prospects, although I'm glad I left the option there. I felt compelled to write this in the hopes that someone who may be making similar choices to the ones I made might read it. Sometimes it can help just to see the complete path and the choices that led there. PF has played a big role in almost every major decision I've made about my career since 2005, and for that I can only say THANK YOU PF!! PS I tried to keep this from being a book but if anyone has more specific questions please let me know.