Thanks for all the input it really helps . Mustang - We already talked with him about the reality astronomy would not be a huge market for jobs . His interest is more with the computer programming aspect of the theories used to study Astronomy . Math and physics are a passion of his.
My son is visiting this weekend and he wants to go back to college
Troubled... Your son sounds alot loke me. I too gave up my passion of getting a degree in physics and astronomy in exchange for servitude to the Watchtower Corporation. But I'm back in school now! I'm taking this semester off but will start again in January.
I havn't hit the financial problems yet since I'm taking all my required transfer courses at a community college and my employer does re-embursement. But, in a few years I'll be transferring to my local University so we'll see what happens then.
Even though my passion is physics and astronomy, to avoid the employment issue, I'm majoring in engineering. You get all the cool science stuff, and the practical applications. There's a shortage of engineers in the U.S., so ther'll always be job opportunities in that field. Maybe thats an idea you can suggest for your son to consider.
Glad U had that discussion. I watched the daughter of a friend try Astronomy: she ended up teaching. OTOH, my buddy, the Nuke Physicist ( he usually "pimps" [his words; but we're really quite mercenary] himself out as an Engineer) has been in 8 countries all this year on jobs and cannot return home yet!!!
Darklighter has it right: go for the Engineering route. BTW, a consultant that I hired did do work on Astronomy stuff. It is my regret that I missed the time he got us a tour of Palomar.
Storal of the mory: Engineeers do everything; he could still get there by the back door
I never finished school, due to JW constraints. But I still made it to Engineering grade and topped out as Principal Engineer once; usually I was just a Sr. Engineer, toward the end. I recommend the school route. I'm semi-retired, but as Darklighter sez, w/ the shortage, I'll go back yet again.