Graduating Physics Major needs Employment Advice

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  • Thread starter lubuntu
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  • #1
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I'll be graduating soon and don't really want to go to grad school. My heart is just not in it anymore and I want to start "living" outside of the context of school for once.

I don't have any internships or anything to make me particularly attractive besides pretty good grades. A few years ago I worked in IT for a bit which is pretty much the only thing to put on my resume and I know(or knew and could get back up to speed with) a good handful of programming languages( C/C++, Java, PHP).

Ideally, I'd probably like to get a job that is somewhat analogous to what an EE would do but that doesn't seem likely. Should I buff up on my programming a bit and go the developer route? Any other good options at this point? Or should I just go to grad school for the hell of it? Or maybe go into even more debt getting a Masters in something to specialize a bit?
 

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  • #2
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If you need a break from school, try to get an entry level job in programming, IT, or engineering.

Then after a couple of years or so, you can get an online masters degree in engineering or whatever you choose.
 
  • #3
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If you need a break from school, try to get an entry level job in programming, IT, or engineering.

Then after a couple of years or so, you can get an online masters degree in engineering or whatever you choose.
Cool.

I can't deal with IT again, just too soul-sucking.

Programming I can see myself doing but I guess I'll be up against CS grads which might make it pretty tough?

Ditto for Engineering.

I live near NYC can a Physics BS sell their soul to Wall St, or do you need a higher degree?
 
  • #4
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just too soul-sucking.
That's why we call it "work".

I am perpetually amazed at the number of people (and I am not just picking on you) who post messages of the sort "I don't want to do X, or Y, or Z, and I need to start at $75K a year, and I am only willing to live in one particular part of the country, and I can't seem to get a job! A physics degree is useless!"
 
  • #5
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That's why we call it "work".

I am perpetually amazed at the number of people (and I am not just picking on you) who post messages of the sort "I don't want to do X, or Y, or Z, and I need to start at $75K a year, and I am only willing to live in one particular part of the country, and I can't seem to get a job! A physics degree is useless!"
I think some part of "I don't want to do X, or Y, or Z" comes from all the "follow your passion and the money will come" BS that's floating everywhere.
 
  • #6
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I think some part of "I don't want to do X, or Y, or Z" comes from all the "follow your passion and the money will come" BS that's floating everywhere.
I think this is because people don't understand what "passion" means.

Passion comes from the word "suffer". You know that you are passionate about something or someone when you are so emotionally attached to it, that you are willing to suffer for it. The concept of "passion of the Christ" is all about the suffering that Christ had as he was nailed to be cross.

You know that you are passionate about physics, if you want it so much, you are willing to suffer for it.

There's also generation gap issues. I got my Ph.D. in the middle of the dot-com bubble, which means I just look at the world a bit different than someone that graduates either in 1930, 1950, 1970, or 2010.

In 1998, the US had just defeated the Soviet Union and was the hyperpower in the world, the internet was a new thing, people were talking about what to do with the massive budget surplus, and it had been seven years since the last recession.

It was a different world.

One thing that I do recommend physics undergraduates is to study a lot of history, since you will be living it. Also studying literature is useful, so that you know what "passion" really means.
 
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