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Aerospace Engineering and Physics Double Major?

  1. May 29, 2013 #1
    Hi all,
    I'm currently a junior in high school (going to be a senior in the 13-14 school year) and I'm starting to think about what I want to major in. i want to do Aerospace Engineering and eventually focus on Astronautical Engineering because it seems like a great way to apply all of the physics knowledge I have built up. I want to do physics because it is super interesting and I think the more advanced topics I wouldn't normally learn about in AE would be useful in the long run especially for Astronautical Engineering.

    Not too committed on any schools yet, so some suggestions would be great, too.

  2. jcsd
  3. May 29, 2013 #2
    You haven't asked a question, but: what do you expect to do with the astronautical degree? (I'm not being discouraging, just seeing if you have a plan for that degree)

    Do you know what, exactly, people do with AE degrees in industry?

    How far do you plan to persue each one (masters, PhD)?
  4. May 29, 2013 #3

    Sorry, I was thinking the question the whole time, but I guess I just forgot to type it. I'm wondering if this sounds like a good plan? Is it even worth taking both or just one or the other? Would it be too much work?

    From what I understand, Astronautical Engineering focuses on spaceflight and space travel. Some of the jobs I have seen are working on communications, planning trajectories, materials, etc. In my eyes, it seems like a way to use knowledge from many different fields to put to one purpose. If I'm wrong about this I would like to know.

    The reason for taking Physics is because I feel that topics that aren't covered in an Aerospace/Astronautical Engineering would be very useful (specifically, relativity).

    As far as post-undergrad, I think I would go for a PhD in AE because it seems to have a more direct path to doing something productive. For physics I think I would just stick with the undergrad because I just don't see where I would go with it. Part of that is because I just don't know what jobs there even are for an applied physics (I don't want to do theoretical) degrees.

  5. May 29, 2013 #4
    nathan...one way to proceed to is get to talk to someone who knows what those engineering disciplines do....ask a few teachers, search on line at NASA, at aerospace engineering firms,
    read wikipedia articles on each....learn whatever you can....look for intern positions..maybe communicate with some people who have been interns....see what they do....

    Find a plausible college, e-mail a professor, and tell him you are interested in his school and HIS courses and would appreciate any contacts who you might be able to talk with to find what sorts of work engineers do....see if you can contact any AE students....see what they know....go to a campus and hang out at the AE building....

    I searched 'aerospace engineering firms in California"....


    E-mail a few, or in your home state, and see if they have summer intern programs....what are the prerequisites..the qualifications....your objective is to get in a door...inside a firm...to meet a few people and see what they do....impress those people via interest and hard work.....

    good luck......
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