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Need advice on school for physics

  1. Aug 11, 2014 #1
    Hello! I'm a college student entering my second year. Last year I studied at Clemson. I'm somewhat set on getting a physics bachelors and then an architecture masters. This is a tentative plan made because of what I want to learn and not because I know it will get me a good job (I don't know much about the job market)
    The issue here is this: I want to transfer to College of Charleston (for non-academic reasons), but I don't know if I'm making a huge mistake academically -- I haven't found any reputable source comparing the two schools' physics programs.
    If anyone could give me a comparison of the two (are they in the same ballpark? Is CofC's program a joke?) that would be very helpful!
    OH also: I might try to get into Clemson's mechanical engineering major (because it seems more relevant to architecture and sounds more employable).
    Tldr wanna transfer to CofC but don't want to go to a school with a wayyy weaker Phys program.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 11, 2014 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    Just the act of transferring without a good reason will be suspect on your resume ie something you'll have to explain. Also you may lose credits in the transfer especially if the new school is more highly rated.

    I would hope it's not because of a relationship issue that is almost always a bad idea to transfer unless you're married.
  4. Aug 12, 2014 #3

    I agree if you don't have a good reason to transfer you maybe better off just staying where you are. Definitely if it is even remotely dealing with a girl, I love the ladies but they can be a huge distraction. I seen this guy transfer to another school for a girl that broke up with him like a month or two after school started. He had a full ride and soccer scholarship at his previous school, he ended up dropping out altogether after that situation
  5. Aug 12, 2014 #4


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    Staff: Mentor

    I'm slightly acquainted with both schools, being in the same general geographic area myself. CofC has more of a "small liberal arts college" atmosphere versus Clemson's "big football university" atmosphere. Nevertheless, CofC has a pretty good size physics/astronomy department, as you can see on their Web site. I count about fifteen assistant/associate/full professors (omitting "mere" instructors and emeritus profs). They have a fair amount of research going. Their strengths seem to be in astrophysics, materials science, biophysics/neurophysics, and meteorology. I wouldn't consider them "wayyy weaker" than Clemson.

    (Probably irrelevant personal story... In spring 1987 I went to a conference at CofC and wandered around the physics department a bit. I found a prof in his office and talked with him a while. Turned out he was one of he astrophysics guys. I mentioned that I had done my Ph.D. work on a neutrino experiment at Fermilab, and he said something like, "oh, you know that supernova that's been in the news lately [Supernova SN 1987A]? Someone just announced that they've observed neutrinos coming from it!" That was how I found out about it, in the days before the Internet.)

    Have you investigated what architecture master's programs expect from incoming students? That might make a difference as far as a physics versus mechanical engineering B.S. is concerned. I don't know anything about architecture programs so I can't address that.
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