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Would it be better to live in a small town or big city when it comes to forensics?

I’m not sure where I want to live in the future and want to know if I’ll be able to find a stable job anywhere I go. #forensic-science #forensics #forensic #chemistry

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Candace’s Answer

Hi Trinity, It is my experience that you can have the best of both worlds. I work for a large lab, the busiest in forensics by volume, but I live an hour outside of NYC. I commute (drive) to work everyday but I also work with a lot of younger people that love living in the city and take the subway. I agree with Yhaqueri Niola, it ultimately depends on your idea of an ideal living environment, what your preferences are and what sacrifices you're willing to make for your career. When you decide to apply to an organization, you'll weigh your options, (city or suburbs, rent or own, drive or public trans, do you have a family or not etc). Hope this helps!

Thank you comment icon Hi, my name is Kayla and I am a senior in high school, I am interested in pursuing a career in forensics, well I actually want to be a pathologist to be exact. I was wondering if I can ask you a few questions to help me get clarification on the steps to be a real forensic scientist. Also to better understand the livelihood I am going to college for. It would be greatly appreciated, thank you. kayla
Thank you comment icon Let Candice know you appreciate it! Amin Rucker
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Kalyani’s Answer

First point we should keep in mind that whatever place you are going to chose at the end it must provide opportunities in the area you are applying.
As we know it totally depends on needs and neccessity that is required to get done our job.
Big city have all facilities easily available whereas small town won't.
When its come to medical section whatever it is whether it's a forensic or any small hospital if you are working in small town you will get to know many things what society is going through any how is there life.
You will be self motivated to do more contribution in your field.
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Ruddhida’s Answer

When it comes to forensics and it's research, staying anywhere is possible and worth it.
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divya’s Answer

Its not matter where you live ,only matter the city have better opportunity.
Thank you comment icon Would you say larger or smaller cities have more opportunities? That might give the student more information Gurpreet Lally, Admin
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Niloufar’s Answer

I prefer living in a big city than a small city. In the small cities people are being judged and it is not easy to live freely however there is less traffic and pollutants! Living in big cities provide more facilities and more fun! In big cities there are lots of opportunities to grow and learn!
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Tricia’s Answer

Hi! I currently work in Pharma but I studied forensic chemistry in college so a lot of my friends work in forensics. You can be successful in a lot of different environments so it depends. If you study forensic chemistry there’s a lot of flexibility which is why I chose it over forensic science. I can work in a normal lab or a forensics lab so I have a lot of choices for work. If you look up forensics jobs on linked in there’s a wide variety of forensics jobs available all over the country so I would look there and see if there’s a city you would like to live in.
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Churchline’s Answer

Big city, has more work therefore more action
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Valeri’s Answer

The more information we can reduce or eliminate uncertainty, as marked by the entropy or the measure of disorder.

Therefore I would choose a big city.

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Megan’s Answer

A big city since you probably will be traveling around.

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Tudor’s Answer

Megan, first go where the job is. Then, you see if you like it and have an inside view about the pros and cons for big city or small city. Good luck and follow your instinct!
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Viviane’s Answer

Small town get more time to analyze samples

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Caleb’s Answer

Generally astronomically immense cities are more liable to have malefaction labs. Each state has a malefaction lab system and they will generally have their main location in a sizably voluminous city but may have satellite labs in other places that may or may not be an astronomically immense city. Aside from the state system, more astronomically immense cities may have their own malefaction lab. A diminutive town will not have enough resources or need to fortify its own malefaction lab.

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Kristyn’s Answer

I believe that it'll be better to work in a bigger town/city as a forensic scientist because not much crime happens in a smaller town as it would in a big city.

Kristyn recommends the following next steps:

find internships
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Brooke’s Answer

Hi Trinity. I am a senior forensic science student at Penn State. From my experience, it only matters what school you go to, not what city you live in. Typically, the larger the state, the more crime labs there are. Also, a lot of crime labs are associated with the state police so it depends on where that is located. Your best change at getting a forensic science job is going to an accredited university/college. You can search in the link I added below. Hope this helps!!

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=2ahUKEwiY6JO2zLjvAhWDtlkKHex1CwgQFjAAegQIHBAD&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.fepac-edu.org%2Faccredited-universities&usg=AOvVaw09eBm60KyZicArVtopgu7o
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AADITYA VIKRAM’s Answer

Having got experience in various divisions of Forensic Science Laboratories I believe working in a big city provides an opportunity for you to deal with variety of cases. Each case shall give you an important lesson and all this experience comes out to be really handy in your career. However in small cities you may find some extraordinary cases to deal with at first if you go through the history some of the serial killers found it easy to hunt in countryside where it was unlikely for them to be caught.
It all matters where as a forensic investigator you wish to head in your career accordingly you should choose the city.
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Sanaz’s Answer

I would say both. They both have pros and cons about them.

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Jeanne’s Answer

Hi! Well I love to live in new places and my career as a Forensic/Biometric Analyst has allowed me to do that. I work for a major company and I support the government. This allows me to live a bit in the country and work in the city. The field of forensics and biometrics is huge and growing faster all the time... from airports to hospitals, police stations, CIA, FBI, local county and even fingerprinting. So many opportunities! The world is out there for you to explore. Keep your chin up, find good mentors and network with people in the industry. Best of luck!
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maria’s Answer

Hi there Maria here. From my experience the best place to work in Forensic even in any other job depends on what career goals you have. What is it that you hope to achieve as a forensic scientist or technician? Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years. If you see yourself working big cases then you will probably find that in a big city. If you see yourself working one on one with people but at a slower place then the big city will not give you that. Small town (small city) will be your answer.
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Tudor’s Answer

Megan, first go where the job is. Then, you see if you like it and have an inside view about the pros and cons for big city or small city. Good luck and follow your instinct!
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Kate’s Answer

It just depends! I'm in the market for a forensic science position right now, and I've seen a lot of different places with forensic labs. It does tend to be larger cities in general, since those areas are more likely to have dedicated crime labs, but there are some private labs that are out in the middle of nowhere PA, etc. It's more important to have a good college degree and some experience, and some flexibility in where you're willing to live, rather than originally choosing to live in the right spot.

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tabassum’s Answer

I don’t think so . Because for such huge field, big cities have better options.

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Sherice’s Answer

A Small town
Thank you comment icon Although this answer's the question, your answer could be made more helpful if you explained why you chose your answer Gurpreet Lally, Admin
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Shaminie’s Answer

Bigger cities (have more opportunities) and you will be able to process different types of cases and learn more. Smaller cities, workload is less but you might travel to different locations to testify if your lab is located at one location and it serves several different counties within the state. It also depends whether you decide to join federal, state or city labs; that makes a difference too.


Shaminie recommends the following next steps:

Identify the speciality forensic area you are interested in
Make sure you fulfill all the required courses
Get the right training in a good accredited school
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Aneri’s Answer

Depends on state where there is more opportunity available.

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yhaqueri’s Answer

It honestly comes to your ideal living environment. If you like working with other people living in a big city would be best. Living in a big city helps you make connections and you get to gain knowledge from others. I'm from a big city and I've been given so many exciting opportunities for free.

Try this link: http://www.apa.org/ed/precollege/ptn/2012/11/student-opportunities.aspx

yhaqueri recommends the following next steps:

Look online for possible payed internships
Talk to close relatives about your ideas and see how they could help
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Stephanie’s Answer

Generally big cities are more likely to have crime labs. Each state has a crime lab system and they will generally have their main location in a big city but may have satellite labs in other places that may or may not be a big city. Aside from the state system, larger cities may have their own crime lab. A small town will not have enough resources or need to support its own crime lab.

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Shraddha’s Answer

It is always better to be in a bigger city when it comes to Forensic. Bigger cities have a well developed system of investigating crimes and therefore provide you with better opportunities to explore.

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Omar’s Answer

Oui, dans une grande ville -


Yes, in a big city (it is better)

Omar recommends the following next steps:

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Gail’s Answer

A small town can have limited resources (money, opportunities) to offer a well rounded forensic work experience. Don't think big city is your only option. Mid-size cities have robust criminal forensic labs with opportunities to grow in your field. You should look at regions of the US. The East Coast of the country has a multitude of forensic labs; federal, state, regional opportunities. While other areas like Montana or North/South Dakota has limited opportunities.

Gail recommends the following next steps:

Decide which field of forensics you want to pursue
Make sure you have an appropriate college degree for your chosen field
Many forensic labs will train you in your chosen field. Look for federal and state forensic labs with training programs.
Thank you comment icon Yes, it is a useful answer Omar Moussa
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YASAMIN’s Answer

I would prefer to live in a big cities.

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nashell’s Answer

I would prefer a small city
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Asma’s Answer

I would like to live in city that i can afford the expenses and different activities to do around.
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Mirabelle’s Answer

Big city or small city, I do not think the size of the city matters; both will always need forensics because the criminal mentality is everywhere. And people are committing a crime in a small or big city.
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Jordy’s Answer

If you're living a big city it is possible to get work don't by asking a lot of people getting to know them to help make the neighborhoods safe again knowing that there is a possibility of solving crime, ever living in a small town out in let's say in the mid-western states there are higher chances of a unknown serial killer that may have traveled just to start a mass murder leaving trails of hidden evidence only to be found in the ten years or so it is well-known that many cases of jane Dos bodies that have not been identified when found in a crime scene are never solved due to the lack of evidence and witnesses. So the logical answer is to live in a big city where you can find multiple resources to shut an open case.
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Kelli’s Answer

Hello my name is Kelli Bruce. To answer this question I am torn because I have lived in a small town all my life but always liked being in the big city such as San Francisco, but if I had to choose I would like to work in a smaller city, because it would be easier to focus on one case and get justice for the victims families and make sure that those in Law Enforcement can work the case thoroughly. On the other hand you wouldn't see a high crime rate which is great and will keep the community feeling safe.
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Curtis’s Answer

Lots of answers here and many of them seem to be on the mark. Larger labs exist where larger amounts of crime exist (usually), because that's where most of the work is. The work experience will vary from urban to rural settings, although one cannot judge a community by its size alone. Where you enjoy living, or how much you enjoy commuting will obviously be factors of where you might want to try to settle down. Many medium-size cities provide adequate work and diversity of caseload without having to be a huge metroplex. In some very rural areas it may be that you are the only forensic person or team in a few counties (and they are big counties). Just not enough people to support anything beyond a coroner there and that is often a contracted position on a lucky or unlucky general practitioner as the case may be.

Key factors will entail getting a good accredited education without going so far in debt you can never pay it back. Then you will want to find a job that your degree cost can afford. I would highly recommend checking job growth by city, metro, and state and see what median salary and cost of living are before you decide where you want to hang your shingle so to speak. The job may be showing good growth across the nation as a whole, but it may be stagnant where you think you want to live and work.

https://www.bls.gov/ooh/

Good luck in your search!
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Vincent’s Answer

In urban environments like cities, more crimes occur, which equal the need for more Forensic Scientists. However, how much that city is invested in their labs is the true issue. I know for a fact that even in New York City, with their large laboratories and staffs, they have a large backlog of evidence to examine, and their budget can hire only so many people. Not to mention the inner politics in such a work environment can be taxing on your mental health and productivity. Competition for a forensic scientist is also extremely high due to low turnover.

Suburban areas do not have as much crime, but that doesn't mean it is nonexistent. Some counties can afford to fund a forensic lab, but a lot of suburbs do not and often send their evidence to be analyzed elsewhere in the state where there are labs. The same can be said for rural areas, where populations are low, resulting is less funding for any laboratories.

I, too, am learning as I go, and have decided to get some practical experience working in non-forensic science labs to pad my resume. Most Forensic science labs require years of experience before taking in new employees.

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C’s Answer

IMHO, forensics is to criminal investigation like dentistry is to health care. Both are important, but, when your budget is limited it is one of the 1st things to go. So, if you want to do field forensics, it will probably be easier to get experience in a large city -- then perhaps you can be the single analyst in a small town.

Lab work is a different story. Labs get placed based on a combination of rent and the ability to attract qualified technicians and scientists. Labs also have an advantage when they are near reasonably large travel hubs. Technicians/scientists still have to support litigation via in person testimony; so, again, they probably won't be too far from the localities they serve. So can you find them in small towns? Yes, but, don't expect to move into just any small town and find a large forensics lab.

A simple lab might be set up in a small city to serve the most common analyses, but, again, they would probably be looking to hire a small number of people that already have experience.

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Prajitha’s Answer

Big city
Thank you comment icon Hey Prajitha, can you expand on why a large city is better? Gurpreet Lally, Admin
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Frank’s Answer

Hello. My name is Frank Hanlin and I am a retired Crime Scene Investigator with the Orlando Police Department in Florida. I had 25 years of experience from trainee, to trainer, to shift supervisor. I now live in the Pittsburgh area in my home town.

Asnwering the question of where to live is best answered by first answering in which discipline of forensics you want to work, in a lab, in a morgue or in the field. I agree with some of the previous posters. Simply put; go where the crime is. More importantly, post high school education is outragiously expensive in America today. Educate smartly! For example, if you want to work in the police environment but don't want to be a sworn officer, look for agencies that hire civilians as investigators. First, look for community colleges that offer certificate programs and or A.S. Degrees in Crime Scene Technology. Then search the forensic websites for training and career opportunities. These include Crime Scene Network, International Association for Identification (I.A.I.) and the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (A.B.M.D.I.)

Another thing to look into is if the hiring agency has a residency requirement. In other words, do you have to live within a city or county border to work there. My old agency, OPD, had a response time requirement from home for on-call assignments of 50 minutes. This allows you to live in a suburban or rural area near the agency.

And one last thing, if your'e looking to make crazy money then go work at a Hedge Fund. I knew early on in my career I would never get rich and I didn't. The rewards lie elsewhere. And if you marry the job, don't marry anybody else. It won't work!

Good luck. I hope this was helpful.
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