Erich Rienecker Posted about 4 years ago How can a talented teenager prepare himself for a scientific career? What do you scientists recommend? (Personal experiences, please). OK, from a man who has worked in Science for the past 15 years. Your son needs one thing: To keep his eye on a career in science. Dont quit and he will get there. Thats it. Your still asking for more? OK.. He should take classes in fields that interest him, he should go do internships at labs and company's that sound "cool". He should keep his grades up enough to be taken seriously, but he should not give up the rest of his life for one single topic. My colleagues dance, play music, or are passionate about surfing, or bicycles. Or about their kids. We are not all driven single topic workaholics. As an example, when we get our flood of summer intern applications, we look for someone that "fits" much more than the one who graduated at the top of the class. We hire people we can work with. Now, if he wants to be the chief scientist, the project manager, or the department head... well yes, the type AA personality that is driven is necessary. But at my institute, there are about 20 of them, and about 200 of the rest of us, all working, all in science.