Astronomy As a Career

When I was young, I had always wanted choose astronomy as a career. I was always fascinated with the stars, planets and the galaxies around me. Shows like Star Trek and Cosmos always impressed me and motivated me to go into this field. However, the scarcity of jobs as an astronomer where I live does not allow me to go into this field of study.

What exactly is astronomy? It is the study of the chemical and physical properties of the stars, comets, planets, galaxies and everything that is outside of our planet Earth. The knowledge of chemistry, physics and maths is fundamental in this area of study.

Astronomer analyze the motions of celestial bodies and derive information out of them in order to understand more on the nature of the universe. Students may want to join astronomy clubs to understand and assess for themselves whether they want to make this their career.

Some of the courses that one can consider taking to pursue astronomer as a career is a degree in Physics majoring in astronomy. The study of quantum theory, statistical mechanics, electricity and magnetism are all important subjects to prepare one for this career.

To many, a basic degree is not enough and a vast number of astronomers prefer to continue their studies up to PhD level to equip themselves for the challenging research work that they will be undertaking.

Astronomers these days have very modern equipments to capture images from the universe. The majority of their time is thus spent on analyzing and interpreting the data from the computers.

Places of Work As Astronomers

Many astronomers work as lecturers and professors at various universities. Some work in the observatories and laboratories. As one does not see the commercial and immediate benefit of astronomy to private organization, most astronomers are employed by the federal governments and universities.

These basically do more basic research. A certain percentage of astronomers is employed by private corporation to help them apply their know how in astronomy to solve a specific problem or design a specific product. 

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