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PhD/Industry Advice

  1. Nov 7, 2011 #1
    Hi everyone - I'm hoping for a bit of impartial advice about career prospects for a couple of different options I'm considering. I graduated from a Masters degree in Physics back in 2009 and since then have been mostly travelling and working, albeit in an unrelated industry (medical insurance/some accounting).

    I loved my time studying during my undergraduate years and still feel the desire to learn more, but I'm also concerned about limiting future career prospects.

    I've had a look around at PhD positions and have been accepted by two supervisors in different fields:
    1) PhD in Biophysics subject at a top university in Germany under a very reputable supervisor
    2) PhD in Soft Condensed Matter subject at a top university in Australia, again under a great supervisor

    I think I tend to lean away from pursuing an academic career, although I haven't closed the door on it completely.

    What are the prospects for a career in industry/government/non-academic field after completing a PhD like the ones I've listed? What sorts of employers would be interested in someone qualified in a PhD in these fields? Are these fields overly specialised and could they limit employability?

    Or, would it be better to simply pursue a career outside of academia based purely on my Masters qualification?

    I've heard nightmare stories about people doing PhDs in physics, coming out with the qualification and then being shut out of prospective job opportunities and having to retrain in a totally new field.

    Advice would be greatly appreciated from a very indecisive person!
  2. jcsd
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