Who wants to be a forensic scientist?

Who wants to be a forensic scientist? Apparently, a lot of people do. The job is so popular right now thanks to CSI. Forensic scientist SarahQ has written a comprehensive LiveJournal post on how to get into forensics. It’s a great read even for those not interested in the field. It turns out that you really, really, really need to take a lot of science classes if you want to end up like the cool forensic scientists on TV:

“Every week or so, someone in the lab will get a cold call from either a college student, a recent graduate, or someone looking to change careers. Invariably, they start off by asking if we have any job openings. When told no, they then ask how they can get a job in forensics.”

(….)

“if you want to work in forensic chemistry, you’re going to need general, organic, and analytical chemistry courses on your transcript. If you want forensic biology, you need classes in biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, and statistics.
These requirements are particularly non-negotiable in forensic DNA labs in the U.S. “

She further writes that specific “forensic science” degrees don’t prepare you enough for an actual job in forensic science – you need basic science skills, and a lot of them!