Over the past few years, Jeroen Geurts has been invited to give interviews, college tour sessions, keynote lectures and be on discussion panels, all for the purpose of helping students of various academic levels figure out how to be good scientists. How to be successful scientists. He has seen sincere anguish and doubt among the audience on more than one occasion. This letter to his actual, potential and hypothetical students summarizes most of what he said about the subject over the years. It's his attempt to openly address -- and perhaps take away -- some of that 'junior distress'. After all, becoming a scientist can be vexing at times, but it is also one of the most satisfying journeys you get to undertake. Jeroen Geurts (1978) is professor of Translational Neuroscience and Chair of the Department of Anatomy & Neurosciences of VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.