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Graduating soon with a BS in Physics

  1. Dec 29, 2015 #1
    So I will be graduating this spring with a BS in Physics, however I feel that I will have quite a rough time when looking for work(I will mainly be looking for jobs in industry). I have a fairly good GPA (~3.7 in physics) but I do not have any extracurricular activities/relevant job experience/research experience for any industry positions. The only job experience that I have is customer service related which is an area which I no longer wish to be working in. The only programming experience that I have is with C++ through my computational physics course, however I feel like that will not be enough to throw on a resume.

    I was thinking that it may be a good idea to look for internships over the summer and then from there I can maybe land a decent position somewhere. Another option that I have in mind is going for a Masters in Physics however I do not know how useful that is nowadays. Any advice that anyone can give me? The industry positions that I typically see available in my area are automotive/software/military all of which I find interesting. I sometimes feel like it may have been a better idea to go for Mech Eng. or EE but its too late to do that at this point. Thanks!
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 30, 2015 #2
    If you really want to do engineering, it's not too late. Engineering masters programs accept physics majors.
  4. Dec 30, 2015 #3


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    To the OP:

    Pursuing either an internship with industry or a research internship over the summer is definitely a good idea, as that would provide you with some solid job experience that would be at least technically focused. My other advice would be to build on your programming/software experience. You have stated that you already have experience with C++ through your computational physics course. Why not consider building on that experience by learning more computer languages (either on your own or through online courses through Coursera, EdX, or Codeacademy), and participate in open-source projects (e.g. github)? Pinpointing any projects you've worked on in open-source can be very useful when applying for programming/software positions (having programming experience will also be helpful for you if you're considering working in numerical analysis or scientific programming jobs).

    Pursuing a masters degree in electrical or mechanical engineering is another option that is good to pursue if you are interested in working in engineering positions. Some other options include the following:

    1. Masters degree in statistics (physics degrees have the quantitative knowledge to be able to pick up knowledge in statistics fairly quickly).

    2. Masters in computer science (this would depend on how much you can teach yourself key principles in CS through either your remaining courses in university or through online learning such as Coursera or EdX).

    3. Masters in industrial engineering or operations research.

    4. Masters or PhD in medical physics (try searching posts by PF Forum contributor Choppy about this).

    5. If you are interested, many physics graduates often pursue professional degrees like law or medicine after school.

    6. PF Forum contributor Locrian finished his BS in physics and subsequently became an actuary. You may want to search his posts or PM him about that path.
  5. Dec 30, 2015 #4
    I really cant say anything that StatGuy did not mention. Only other option I can think of is that you can look into careers like becoming a nuclear technician or even obtaining a Masters of Nuclear Engineering via an online university (they seem to really like Physics types). I personally am pursuing a masters in EE and I also have Physics BS.
  6. Dec 30, 2015 #5


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    Gold Member

    What turned you off to a PhD in physics?
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