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Should I switch from Physics to Mechanical Engineering?

  1. Apr 22, 2012 #1
    Hey guys, this is my first post on here.

    I'm a second-year physics major at a large public university in the U.S., and I am considering changing my major to mechanical engineering (with a physics minor. I faced this decision at the same time last year. If I were to switch I would have to stay in college for an extra semester, which is probably ok for me.

    As I have seen on these forums several times, one of the main reasons I am considering this is the lack of career options for phycisists. I think I might have difficulty getting into grad school, as my gpa is slightly below 3.0.

    I have always been very interested in physics and astrophysics, but I think I would also like M.E. I have always liked building stuff. Also I had an internship at a biophysics lab last summer. Both programs are relatively good at my university.

    Any advice?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 22, 2012 #2


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    Gold Member

    This is a switch that I made about 50 years ago, and I never regretted it. It worked out great for me. But that was me; that is not to say what is right for you. Only you can decide what you really want to do. You have to decide where you think your interests really are, where you think your future is going to be. Don't think one is going to be a lot easier than the other; it is not. Either way, you are looking at a lot of work, but there are great careers either way.
  4. Apr 24, 2012 #3
    Thanks, I suppose you are right.
    Anybody else have advice?
  5. Apr 25, 2012 #4
    Some of our best engineers have degrees in physics and not engineering. Probably my engineering education gave me about 5% of what I need to be a mechanical design engineer. Maybe if I had a degree in physics it might be 6%.
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