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Living in Southern Ontario with a BSc in physics

  1. Aug 19, 2014 #1
    Hi everyone, I am looking for some advice.

    I just graduated with my BSc in physics this June. I applied to do my physics masters, but with a GPA of 3.0 I was not accepted. I am now searching for a job, without much luck.

    In university I did not actively acquire hands on skills beyond my course requirements. I am finding it hard to convince employers that I am worth while, as I do not have obvious transferable experience and hard skills.

    A physics education has prepared me to solve real world problems, and the critical thinking it requires has made it easy for me to learn Java and math software like Maple. However I am very new to object oriented programming, and do not have the AutoCAD experience many employers look for.

    I am like a virgin; all the parts are working and I have great desire, but no one wants anything to do with me.

    My direct question would be, do any of you physics people know of open minded companies that hire BSc physics?

    I live in Southern Ontario near Toronto, I prefer this area, but willing to relocate.

    Any help, or suggestions are welcome.

    Thanks.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 19, 2014 #2
    Getting into a graduate school in the US could be one way to go... Just need to take the GRE.
     
  4. Aug 20, 2014 #3

    StatGuy2000

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    Education Advisor

    Welcome to PF forums, colinven.

    To answer your question, there are companies out there that do hire those with a Bsc in physics, but a physics degree on its own does not really open doors to that many different jobs unless if there are specific applicable skills that you can bring to an employer. Many physics graduates, for example, often can work in software development or IT type positions because of their programming skills, which you had just mentioned.

    If I were you, I would suggest the following:

    (1) I would go to your university's career centre and see what types of positions are available, as well as utilize any services provided by them on interviewing techniques or resume building.

    (2) I would suggest you think about what types of jobs you are interested in applying to, and then work on developing those skills. You mentioned that you are new to object oriented programming -- one place to start is to take programming courses (those offered at your university, or through community college courses or possibly online courses offered through websites like Coursera) and work on specific open-source coding projects of your own. For example, you can develop a simple spreadsheet program or game program, or develop an app to do something simple. Then you can state in your resume that you have programming skills and have something to show for it.

    (3) Related to (2), there are many positions opening in "data science" in various different businesses (marketing, finance, etc.). Many of these positions only require that you have strong quantitative skills and programming knowledge. Try learning spending some time brushing up on statistics and consider applying to these fields (again, try looking through Coursera on courses in data mining, machine learning, statistics, etc.) Try applying to entry level data analyst positions.

    (4) Network! Try networking through your friends, classmates, professors, etc. Attend career fairs or industry fairs related to areas you're interested in working in. Research companies you're interested in and request to set up an informational interview where you can specifically ask about what the company does, etc. In this way, you can develop important contacts that can vouch for your interest in that field.

    (5) I would also be open-minded about possibly pursuing a second degree that may be more immediately employable. This is particularly the case if you are interested in working in say, engineering, where credentials are important.

    These are just some of the things that could be really helpful for you. Best of luck on the job search!
     
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