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2008 National DNA Day Online Chatroom Transcript

This is just one question from an archive of the National DNA Day Moderated Chat held in April 2008. The NHGRI Director and many genomics experts from across NHGRI took questions from students, teachers and the general public on topics ranging from basic genomic research, to the genetic basis of disease, to ethical questions about genetic privacy.

How many years of college does it usually take to become a geneticist?
     Samir Kelada, Ph.D., M.P.H.: Identifying genes that confer susceptibility to allergic asthma. The answer depends on what kind of geneticist you want to be. I'm a research geneticist, and that took 4 years of college and then another 4-5 years of graduate school. If you want to be a medical geneticist working with patients, it would take 4 years of college, 4 years of medical school, and then some additional residency training. So those are long roads to take, but they can be extremely satisfying and gratifying! You can do other types of genetics work, in a research lab or diagnostics lab, that would only take the 4 years of college. So there are different options to consider.
Athens High School in AL (11th grade student)

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