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Advice for an EE grad intrested in physics

  1. Jun 18, 2013 #1
    I have a degree in electrical engineering, but I would like the opportunity to do physics in graduate school. A significant issue I have encountered is that I have no research experience, and seemingly no way to acquire it. It seems these opportunities are just for undergraduates; it seems there are typically enough undergrads to fill all available positions, and they will not take on an un-enrolled student instead of an undergrad. I would like to have a chance at getting into one of the better graduate schools, but lately I maybe get some feeling of futility. I’d have to be applying by around December this year.

    Part of my story:
    I got a good GPA in college but I may have graduated before I was ready. Out of college I had wanted to get a job of the kind that might look better to graduate schools – something that might involve physics or some of the more advanced things I learned in school. But, I didn’t get the positions that came even somewhat close to that. It seemed that even if I had gotten one of these better positions for which I interviewed, I wasn’t going to work my way into a career that I wanted. I was having increasing emotional issues related to my career and eventually I stopped interviewing completely. I was being supported by my parents at this time. After some time, I began to seriously self-study in a way I really hadn't before. Initially it was quantum physics, but I have been studying other subjects in physics in math. I found a way to take physics courses a university without being in a degree program. So far I have done well, and I may be a far better student now than I ever have been. I also took the Physics GRE, and did acceptably (790) considering I have never taken courses in thermal physics or quantum mechanics. If I come understand what a Boltzmann distribution is (among other things), I think I would be able to do significantly better.

    Anyway, I’d appreciate any advice for possibly finding a research position or otherwise increasing my chances of getting into a better graduate school. Also I’d like to know what would be realistic for me, considering my resume is lacking and also some dark spots in my past. In spite of these things I think I may be worthy of an opportunity.
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2013
  2. jcsd
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