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Career and Education Opportunities for Astronomers in Denton, Texas

If you want to be an astronomer, the Denton, Texas area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. About 350 people are currently employed as astronomers in Texas. By 2016, this is expected to grow 23% to 420 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for astronomers are expected to grow by about 16.0%. Astronomers generally observe, research, and interpret celestial and astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge and apply such information to practical problems.

Income for astronomers is about $34 per hour or $72,460 annually on average in Texas. Nationally, their income is about $48 per hour or $101,300 yearly. Earnings for astronomers are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Physical Sciences in Texas and better than general Physical Sciences category earnings nationally. People working as astronomers can fill a number of jobs, such as: research scientist, astronomy professor, and observatory director.

The Denton area is home to twenty-seven schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Denton where you can get a degree as an astronomer. Given that the most common education level for astronomers is post-Doctoral training, you can expect to spend at least four or five years training to become an astronomer if you already have a Bachelor's degree, or at least eight to ten years if you have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Astronomer

Astronomer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, astronomers observe, research, and interpret celestial and astronomical phenomena to increase basic knowledge and apply such information to practical problems.

Astronomers study celestial phenomena, using a variety of ground-based and space-borne telescopes and scientific instruments. They also collaborate with other astronomers to carry out research projects. Equally important, astronomers have to raise funds for scientific research. They are often called upon to design theories on the basis of personal observations or on observations and theories of other astronomers. They are expected to present research findings at scientific conferences and in papers written for scientific journals. Finally, astronomers design and modify astronomy-related programs for public presentation.

Every day, astronomers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to read and understand documents and reports. It is also important that they write clearly and communicate well.

It is important for astronomers to calculate orbits and decide on sizes, shapes and motions of different celestial bodies. They are often called upon to direct the operations of a planetarium. They also design and modify astronomy-related programs for public presentation. Somewhat less frequently, astronomers are also expected to direct the operations of a planetarium.

Astronomers sometimes are asked to teach astronomy or astrophysics. and measure radio and x-ray emissions from extraterrestrial sources. And finally, they sometimes have to study celestial phenomena, using a variety of ground-based and space-borne telescopes and scientific instruments.

Like many other jobs, astronomers must be able to absorb the factors involved and a problem and provide a well thought out solution and have an achievement oriented outlook with an eye towards personal and professional growth.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Denton include:

  • Chemist. Conduct qualitative and quantitative chemical analyses or chemical experiments in laboratories for quality or process control or to develop new products or knowledge.
  • Environmental Health and Safety Specialist. Conduct research or perform investigation for the purpose of identifying, abating, or eliminating sources of pollutants or hazards that affect either the environment or the health of the population. Utilizing knowledge of various scientific disciplines may collect, synthesize, and take action based on data derived from measurements or observations of air, food, and other sources.
  • Geological Specialist. Study the composition, structure, and other physical aspects of the earth. May use geological, physics, and mathematics knowledge in exploration for oil, gas, or underground water; or in waste disposal, land reclamation, or other environmental problems. May study the earth's internal composition, atmospheres, and its magnetic, electrical, and gravitational forces. Includes mineralogists, crystallographers, and seismologists.
  • Hydrologist. Research the distribution, circulation, and physical properties of underground and surface waters; study the form and intensity of precipitation, its rate of infiltration into the soil, movement through the earth, and its return to the ocean and atmosphere.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Astronomer Training

University of North Texas - Denton, TX

University of North Texas, Chestnut Ave., Denton, TX 76203-1277. University of North Texas is a large university located in Denton, Texas. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 34,795 students and an admission rate of 64%. University of North Texas has a master's degree program in Astrophysics.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Denton, Texas

Denton, Texas
Denton, Texas photo by Nv8200p

Denton is located in Denton County, Texas. It has a population of over 119,454, which has grown by 48.3% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Denton, 92, is below the national average. New single-family homes in Denton are priced at $265,400 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, five hundred seventy-eight new homes were constructed in Denton, down from seven hundred eighty-seven the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Denton are educational services, health care, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is educational services, construction, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 35.5% of Denton residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.5%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Denton is 6.0%, which is less than Texas's average of 8.1%.

The percentage of Denton residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 34.5%, is less than both the national and state average. Pleasant Grove Baptist Church, Pleasant Grove Church and Central Baptist Church are among the churches located in Denton. The most prominent religious groups are the Southern Baptist Convention, the Catholic Church and the United Methodist Church.

Denton is home to the Denton County Courthouse and the Daughters of the American Revolution Museum as well as Phoenix Park and Evers Park. Visitors to Denton can choose from Best Western Denton Inn and Clayton House Motel for temporary stays in the area.