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Thinking of starting a career in Astrophysics, need advice?

  1. Oct 25, 2013 #1
    I know it sounds like a big decision (which it is) but I've been considering it for a few weeks now and found that I'm really interested in astronomy and the physics that it is based on (I also really like theories, so maybe a theoretical physicist position too). I'd spend 3+ hours a day just reading things about astronomy, possibility of life on other planets, our origin, the many different and interesting theories (also watching a lot of Michio Kaku), etc. when I'm suppose to be studying other subjects. I know its a very hard path to take to get about $40K to maybe $90K a year (and no, I'm not doing it for the money) and that I probably need at least 10 years after university to really specialize in something and that'll pay decent, but is all of this really true? I don't know many Astrophysicists or Theoretical Physicists (as you might imagine) so I don't really know who to ask, so I chose this section of the forum (sorry if it's the wrong section, but there was no "career" section) and I'm not even 19 yet so my experience is obviously very limited, is anyone here with enough experience to "point" me in the right direction? Also do you have to be born gifted or born interested in physics and astronomy like Michio Kaku who built a particle accelerator when he was only in high scool (yeah...seriously)? because I'm not like that at all. Also, sorry about the book I just wrote... lol, I'm not even sure if anyone will see it, but it feels good to get it off my chest :smile:
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 25, 2013 #2

    HallsofIvy

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    Your first step should be to get an advanced degree in physics- with a focus on astrophysics. You don't say how old you are or what education you already have so I don't know how much that will take.
     
  4. Oct 25, 2013 #3
    I said that I was almost 19 in my original post
     
  5. Oct 25, 2013 #4

    Chronos

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    Develop an unnatural obsession with math.
     
  6. Oct 25, 2013 #5

    jtbell

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    Staff: Mentor

    You apparently overlooked our Career Guidance forum. :smile: I've moved this thread there.
     
  7. Oct 25, 2013 #6
    On it.
     
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