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Engineering or Physics internship?

  1. Feb 19, 2015 #1
    I'm a physics major but I can't seem to find any physics internships without having to travel long distances, so I was thinking about an engineering internship but I was wondering if that would be a smart move or not?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 19, 2015 #2
    Smarter than no internship :)
  4. Feb 19, 2015 #3


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    Office work experience is always good. I doubt a future physics job is going to look down on you for experiencing engineering.

    Also, what you learn in college doesn't translate very well into the work place.

    However, learning how to be a top rate thinker and problem solver in college does translate quite nicely into the workplace.

    But with anything in life, the question always comes down to......"What would you do?"
  5. Feb 19, 2015 #4
    It depends on what you want out of your physics degree.

    "Internship" is a term usually applied to industry where people don't generally work in a physics capacity, they work in an engineering capacity. If you want to get a job in industry doing engineering or engineering-like stuff then an engineering internship would be a great idea.

    If you want to do physics for a career (that is, be a professional physicist) then you are looking to go to graduate school for a PhD in physics. In this case you would usually be better served doing undergraduate research at your university (or a national lab if one is near you).
  6. Feb 20, 2015 #5


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    While what ModusPwnd said is true, there are also internships that are very advanced development related (which is different is some ways than research). As an intern I worked with physicists on developing the controls for new methods of night vision goggles (I'm an EE). While my primary responsibility was the EE development, I had to help with some physics research too.

    My point is you can find internships and jobs that have R&D components to them. that being said most of them will be primarily industry and production based, which includes design which can take brains.
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