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Job Prospects for a fresh M.S. in Health Physics

  1. Feb 10, 2014 #1
    I've been looking at graduate programs for Health Physics because I realized that I might not want a PhD but also want to be employable with a Physics degree. Usually people want a Certified Health Physicist but to be able to take the exam for certification, you need at least 6 years experience in the field. Only 2 of those years can be substituted with education. So as there's that 4 year gap, does anyone know how difficult it is to get a relevant job to fill that gap?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 10, 2014 #2

    Physics_UG

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    sounds like a catch 22. You need the certification to get a med physics job but you need a med physics job to get the certification
     
  4. Feb 10, 2014 #3

    Physics_UG

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    errr..what is the difference between medical physics and health physics?
     
  5. Feb 10, 2014 #4
  6. Feb 10, 2014 #5
    My understanding is that a master's degree in health physics will only provide you with one year of experience credit. You need a doctoral degree for two years of credit, so you are looking at the graduate degree plus another 5 years of work experience before you are eligible to take the ABHP exam.

    A quick look at job postings on indeed.com shows several health physics positions and some of them advertise mandatory CHP credentials while others only have desired experience levels but do not mention certification. I suspect it could be a lot like the recently retired model for medical physics: a certified physicist provides on the job training to junior-level health physicists until they have sufficient work experience to sit for their board exams. Some of the job postings I see are explicitly labeled as "Junior Health Physicist".

    Unfortunately I am not a health physicist (I am a medical physicist) and do not have much knowledge about how open or flooded the job market might be. Considering many health physics jobs are open to people with bachelor degrees, having a master's degree would hopefully make you a stronger applicant.
     
  7. Feb 11, 2014 #6
    If you are looking for experience doing HP at operating nuclear plants, check out these job boards:

    http://www.roadtechs.com/nuke/wwwboard/

    http://www.nukeworker.com/

    These are almost entirely short-term contract jobs. If you scan thru them you will quickly see who the "job shops" are that normally find people to fill the positions. Talk to them about the qualifications to get these positions.
     
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