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Physics Alternative: physicists working in the BayArea/Tech Valley?

  1. Jul 7, 2016 #1
    Hi all,

    I am 27yo with a Msc in experimental physics. My goal was to pursue an academic career (PhD, postdoc etc...) in experimental physics. After some investigation I realize it might not be the best option: PhD offers I received would basically set me bellow the poverty line for 4years and every postdocs I met (from EU and USA) told me that landing a position was random and unlikely (especially since I am a little older than average and not that well "connected"). This is a very well known fact which I choose to ignore until now... So now I really have to consider some other options, such as working in the industry.

    Turns out I am in the Bay Area for a few months and I see that a lot of companies have some cool tech projects too, and they seem to employ engineers by the thousands (although not physicists ?). The Bay Area itself is nice and I could see myself living there! I am not a data scientist but I might as well try before going back to EU and start my PhD.

    I'd like to know if there are physicists in the forum working in this area that I could talk to ?
    Are there a lot of options besides computer sciences ?
    In all generality would you recommend doing a PhD for the long run or is it something they don't need (I can't do a PhD just for the sake of it)?

    Any insights and advice would be very welcomed!
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 7, 2016 #2
    Living in the other hemisphere, I'm too far away from the Bay Area, but, being PhD in theoretical physics, I'm surely quite close to CS.
    Literally, I'm up to my neck in it. And I like it
    Certainly, I've been enjoying solving problems as long as remember myself. But CS gives me more than enjoyment - right now - it feeds me.

    I often have jobs requiring many skills: CS, Physics, Statistics, Economics, even Linguistics.
    So, do not hesitate: the more you know, the more confident you feel.
  4. Jul 7, 2016 #3


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    Gold Member

    I have a PhD in physics and live in the Bay Area. Please feel free to message me directly.
  5. Jul 7, 2016 #4


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    Staff: Mentor

    Keep in mind that the cost of living is quite high here, and it can be very crowded in places. That said, it is a good place to live if you can find work that you enjoy. :smile:
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