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Postby nayaloryn » Wed Jul 06, 2016 1:12 pm

I was watching this video about the cloning of humans and stuff and I realized that's a career I would like to pursue. But I have no clue what I'd study, I don't even know what that kind of job would be called. I've been trying to find more information about it but I can find anything. The only thing I found was reproductive cloning, but not much else, but I'm sure it has to do with science/biology.

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Re: Cloning

Postby 324B21 » Thu Aug 11, 2016 2:19 am

Hi there. This is a really ambitious goal! I have been thinking on this question for a few hours now because I want this reply to be just as thoughtful as your question was. As such, my reply here is going to be a bit lengthy (but hopefully helpful and encouraging) So, let me help by getting you started on your path.

First: Talk to EVERYONE you come across along the way. As with all types of science, there are experts to be found in all realms. For instance, my biology professor last semester specialized in phosphorescent (aka: glow in the dark) bacteria. Every teacher is an open door of knowledge and experience. Talk to each of them about your goals and ask them what advice they might have to impart.

Second: Do routine check-ins with counselors to make sure you are still on track. As with all careers, education requirements can change. Also, keep checking online and with any teachers you make a solid connection with to double check you are on track. These will be vital as you move forward. Forging these connections not only moves your mind forward, but might provide valuable references.

Third: Look at requirements for jobs you are interested in. Not everyday-just once every 6 months or so. The further you get into science, the more options you will see. Where you start might not be where you end up, and it is important to keep track.

Fourth: Volunteer in science! Your knowledge can help someone else. Regardless if it is at a museum, in a lab, or tutoring it not only gives you hands on experience, but flexes your brain too.

Ok. So, let's get to your actual question now. Let's start with a bit of bad news, then come on back to the great, positive, amazing things in science that might be a perfect fit (and talk about education as well). Currently (as of today), human cloning is not a career people can go into unless as you mentioned you are looking at reproductive or therapeutic cloning. This isn't to say that we CAN'T do it-just that it would be unethical to do so today. Here is a great article that talks about the complexity of this idea. As with all things, make sure to check in with an adult in your life to make sure it is age appropriate. I use the word "today" a lot in this part of my response because, we don't know what will happen tomorrow. Tomorrow, you might think of a safe way to clone humans! Tomorrow, someone might find the key that opens the door, and by the time you are done with school careers are booming.

Here is the good news. The aforementioned reproductive and therapeutic cloning fields are making great strides. Now certainly the field is controversial since stem cells are being used, but perhaps you might be the one who brings understanding to the masses if this is a field that interests you.

Another field you might look at is Bioethics! This is a new, emerging field that has gained a lot of popularity and steam in the last 20-30 years. Bioethics grapples with questions like: Is Cloning Ethical? That first article I sent to you? That is from someone who is most likely in Bioethics. Here is a site that might be useful. Even more targeted is this portion of the site that deals a lot with cloning and stem cell research. I encourage you to write back if you have other questions or even thoughts on what you are interested in. I don't know you well enough to say exactly what the best alternatives are while human cloning is in a holding pattern. But, with that said, let's talk about education shall we?

First off, you are going to need a ton of Genetics and as you guessed Biology classes. Everything in the fields above require a lot of it. Cloning is under the umbrella of Genetics, so learn as much as you can! Research everything that catches your eye in your off time. For Bioethics you would need a lot of Philosophy classes along with an area of specialty. So for instance, medical, law, biology, sociology. People come from all sorts of backgrounds with Bioethics. With all 3 of the careers I mentioned above, you are looking at a Masters or above. That might seem daunting today, but you can do it. Make small goals and reach them one by one like a ladder and pretty soon you will be sky high!!

Last: Make sure whatever you decide you convey this verbally to your professors. This way you can try to tailor your education for that particular interest. Look for ways to write your papers or make your research work with your major!

I wish you all the best! As I mentioned, please write back if there is anything I or anyone else can help you with.


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