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Back ups for a physics major

  1. Oct 31, 2014 #1
    At the moment, I'm a second year phyics/astronomy major, along with a math minor. And like most people majoring in STEM fields, I hope to get into a PhD program in a few years or so (I don't exactly know what to go into specifically, I have an interest in a couple of somewhat specific fields of physics, but I digress), however, I know that the majority of physics majors usually end up not going for a PhD, and end up just settling for a master's, or rarely, undergraduate.So can I make a living just from a master's, or even an undergraduate degree? What kinds of jobs could I expect if I do (I know considering my majors, the odds of stopping at a bachelor's and getting a good job are astronomical, but I still am curious)? If I go for a master's, what major would really increase my value in the job market? My gpa and the classes I'm taking at the moment are, more or less, what's to be expected of a physics major, but I still would like to know about all the safety nets available.
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 31, 2014 #2
    You can make a living with no degree at all.

    If you get a masters in physics the job outlook is not much better than any ol' BS degree. But many physics grads get masters in specialized non-physics areas that do have better prospects than a physics BS or MS. The most popular masters degree of my undergrad class was in education. Others found themselves doing a variety of things like computer programming, truck driving, the armed forces, working at a bar, etc. I studied engineering for a bit after studying physics and got a job as a engineer in the semiconductor industry.

    If the PhD doesn't work out consider a non-physics degree for specialization and specific career applicable skills.
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