1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Questions about School

  1. Jun 30, 2010 #1
    Hi Im an entering freshman going to Georgia Tech in the fall and I plan to major in physics.

    Now even though it is probably too early for me to decide this I want to specialize in Nuclear Physics, and of course get my Doctorate. Basically I plan to stay in school till I get my doctorate. Anyways, I was wondering, would it be helpful for me to seek a nuclear physicist and ask them about undergraduate research opportunities early on? And also, what would be some great schools to specialize in nuclear physics? I was wondering about MIT, but I'm not sure if this is just some generic thought that since they are MIT..they would of course have what I need.

    All of this is based off of the fact that I think all of the nuclear physicist here are Emeritus and im basically guessing that I wouldn't get a nuclear physicist as an advisor here, since I dont think there are many.

    Here are the questions again in case I digressed and lost you, I do that...

    1. Should I seek a nuclear physicist on campus for Undergrad research opportunities?
    2. What would be a great fit for grad school if I wanted to specialize in nuclear physics?
    3. How great of a school is GaTech for physics in general, and Nuclear physics?
    Plus any other helpful advice you could give a budding freshman majoring in physics.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 1, 2010 #2
    1.) You should always ask, you should always keep your ears open for those opportunities. Research will not fall into your lap- you have to go out and seek it.
    2.) For a PhD in Nuclear physics consider Michigan State. They're ranked number one in the world (for nuclear), they recently got a grant from the DOE to build a new facility (will be the best nuclear facility in the US). It is extremely competitive, but worth it. Speaking from experience the people are incredibly nice. You get the best nuclear education without the "intellectual snobbery" that occasionally comes with a place like MIT or CalTech.
    3.) I have no idea.
     
  4. Jul 1, 2010 #3

    ZapperZ

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2016 Award

    Michigan State is certainly ranked up there for nuclear physics, but I wouldn't call the facility they're constructing as "the best nuclear facility in the US", because RHIC will have something to say about that. It is also a particular facility that make use of rare ions, so it is studying something a bit different.

    Zz.
     
  5. Jul 1, 2010 #4
    I would say so.

    I suppose you could ask though I'm not sure if you'd have much to offer as a freshman: you haven't even started studying nuclear physics. It's always good to build contacts and express interests, however.

    I would say so.

    I wouldn't bother thinking about anything like this for the moment - you're getting years ahead - things will be different by the time you're finished your undergraduate. Knowing which post-graduate schools to apply to for a given subject is one thing, but what will happen even if you make a list? You can't apply for another few years, and by then there will have been changes at many schools so the situation might have changed.
     
  6. Jul 3, 2010 #5
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
  7. Jul 3, 2010 #6

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    The problem with "best" is that it leads to the question "best for what"? If you want to study extremes of isospin, FRIB is a great machine. If your interested in light nuclei reactions relevant to stellar cores, you'd be better off at Notre Dame. If your interested in heavy ion reactions at low to moderate energies, Berkeley would be the place for you. And so on.
     
  8. Jul 3, 2010 #7

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

    Getting back to the OP's question, Georgia Tech has really no nuclear physics program to speak of. However, as an undergraduate, one studies physics, and not some sort of specialization in physics. So what's important is a solid base on which to build.
     
  9. Jul 3, 2010 #8

    ZapperZ

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor
    2016 Award

    This is going off-topic, but you really shouldn't be using such terms. The graduate school ranking does NOT rank facilities. FRIB isn't built yet. Furthermore, RHIC and the JLab accelerators (all of which are nuclear physics facilities) are not ranked in such a thing because they are not at any given school. Michigan State being ranked that highly doesn't have anything to do with whether or not FRIB is the "best" nuclear facility in the US.

    Zz.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2017
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: Questions about School
Loading...