North Dakota residents who would like to become forensic scientists should know that the state is fully of many wonderful educational opportunities for them to take advantage of. This is important, because having a formal education is absolutely vital to your success in the forensic science field.
Most jobs in the field will require you to have at least a master’s degree, and you’ll likely fare even better with a master’s degree or even a PhD. There are some jobs out there for those with only associate’s degrees, but they are just that- jobs- and not the lucrative, prestigious careers most people think of when they think of working in forensic science.
Your first step to get started in the field is to do some real research. Sit down at a local library or do some reliable internet research to learn about the field in general. Spend a great deal of time educating yourself on the wide range of different careers available in forensic science.
When you find something that interests you, investigate further. Learn about the job itself to see if it is realistically something you could do and, if so, learn about the preferred educational background(s) and requirements for its professionals.
When you have your choices narrowed down significantly, take the next step and get some real world experience with the job or jobs you are interested in. Try arranging a job shadowing opportunity, in which you closely follow and sometimes even do work with a person in the job you are interested in.
You can also try and arrange a full blown internship, an observation opportunity, or even just a sit down or online interview with a person you admire. This experience will help you to know for sure what the best job in the field is for you.
When you have a career goal set in place and you know what it will take to reach that career goal, it becomes very easy to plan your education around your goals. You will know what options you have in terms of a major, what degree level you ultimately need to aspire to, and what kind of additional training and/or experience you will need, if any.
Keep all of these things in mind as you look at different schools or programs throughout the state and, for those choosing online education, around the nation.
When you choose, apply for, and eventually complete your education, don’t think that your hard work is over yet. Most jobs will want to hire those with real world experience. So, taking on an internship, even if you had one before you started your education, is a good idea.
Internships may be paid, unpaid, or, if you are still in school, taken for class credit. In any case, they are a great way to add to your resume and, perhaps more importantly, to make connections in the field which could help you in your career later in life.