Becoming a linguist is not a difficult undertaking, and the education you receive can give you many different career opportunities. Linguists can study many different kinds of languages and different types of dialects as well.
If you're becoming a linguist in English, it's important to take literature and writing courses in order to get a background before you begin learning where words come from and how they are formed.
Studying history is also important, because the formation of words and language over time has depended on wars and who has conquered whom. Sociology and psychology can also be helpful in understanding why people choose the words they do. Taking these types of general education classes will help tremendously when you begin specific linguistics courses.
When you study linguistics you will be studying words, their meanings, how words are formed, why they sound the way they do, and other important things to know about language. You can learn as many languages as you wish to, but you can also stick to one language and learn as much as you can about that one language.
A typical career that linguists can have is in teaching. Once you complete your education at the university level with a specialization in linguistics, you might want to go on to teach linguistics to others. Another teaching option is to teach others that aren't familiar with the language you've studied. Teaching English as a second language in foreign countries is a very popular career choice for linguists. Linguists can also be interpreters.
Other jobs that linguists have can include becoming a language historian or working for the government. In these instances linguists are focused on all the things they have learned about their language or languages, and they put these things to use in practical work. Language historians can study why people speak the way they speak today based on how they spoke in the past. Government linguists can crack codes and work overseas. You can take continuing education classes online to help keep your skills sharp.
Becoming a linguist requires a lot of education and work, but it is a rewarding career. It is important to choose a school that has a specific linguistics major, because some universities don't offer a degree in linguistics.