"I think a career is a journey not a destination."

Role Model Photo Brandt Schneider

Health Field: Research Scientist

Number of years in the profession:
15 year

Years in College: 13 years

Professional Credentials:

How did you know this career was what you wanted to do?
My philosophy is that work should be both profitable and fun, so I've always endeavored to find both in my career paths.

What other careers did you consider?
Before discovering scientific research, I wanted to be a Veternarian.

What experiences in your life developed your interest in your career?
I was fortunate enough to grow up with a circle of friends who were very bright and motivated. Everyone has gone on to successful careers, and we still stay in touch. My family was academically oriented and helped expose me to science and research at a young age.

What early preparations did you take (in high school and college) to reach your career goal?
I was in a gifted/talented program in high school that allowed us to take advanced placement courses or to interact with university professors and students. This always pushed me to excel adcademically.

What things did you find to be difficult as you prepared for your career?
I think that regardless of the career path one chooses, some things get harder the more accomplished you get and some things get easier. That's the process; I think a career is a journey not a destination.

How did you overcome these challenges?
With hard work, patience, and a little luck almost all challenges can be overcome.

Was your family supportive of you through your college (or other training) years?

Did you have a job and work while you were going to college or other training? Yes

Present Career as a Research Scientist

Describe an average work day for you.
I run an active genetics research lab at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. Because I am also a scientist, a mentor, an educator, an administrator, and a writer. I wear many different hats at different times. Thus, no two days are the same. This keeps my work exciting and unpredictable. Predominatly, I am a manager and a problem solver. My job involves determining what research we are going to do, how it will be accomplished, how anticipated and unanticipated problems will be dealt with, and how and where we will get the grant funds to pay for my lab staff and their supplies. In between all this, I teach Anatomy and Genetics to first year medical students and graduate students. I am also grealty involved in the day to day administrative duties required as a TTUHSC Faculty member.

How many hours do you work in an average week?

What kind of health care setting do you work in?
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center includes academic, research, and hospital settings.

What do you see as strengths needed for your career?
Knowledge, enthusiasm, wisdom, imagination, determination, people and writing skills, and patience.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?
Seeing the look in people's eyes when they learn or discover something new for the first time.

What advice would you give to those who are interested in your career?
Do what you love, love what you do. Don't let anyone else set boundaries for you. Set your goals high, but remember that whatever is worth doing, is worth doing well. When times are tough, don't be too hard on yourself or anyone else; anywhere worth going takes time and effort, so remember to enjoy it when you get there.

If you could start over, would you still make the same decision to pursue education?
Definately, it has been a great ride!

Do you plan to pursue opportunities for advancement in your career field?
Everyday I strive to get better at something.

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