So I need to make a decision on this asap as I am already part way through a semester and need to choose a physics program at my university depending on the outcome of my question here and talking to an advisor. I want to pursue a PhD in physics. My university has a program that is geared toward this and shaves almost a year off of graduate school by doing so. Being 30 and having bills and a wife makes my decision not 100% mine as it will affect someone else. How often do people get jobs that help pay for school and/or pay decent wage (35-40k/yr) while you work on a PhD? I've heard of some doing something like this with a bachelors and you sign a contract to say you will work them for x years. My wife doesn't mind if I am in school for the next 6-7 years, but doesn't want to live on Top Ramen and a small apartment for that long. As long as I meet the requirements in the first sentence, or even close, then I am good. If this is something that never happens, then I'll just do the applied physics program (which is easier :rofl:) and be done at a bachelors. If not a PhD, perhaps this could apply better to a masters?