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Programs Stuck between MechE and Physics

  1. Apr 11, 2016 #1
    So I'm a second year community college student, I only have a few days left to pick my classes for the fall, and I have no idea which one I want to major in.

    I guess the one MAJOR plus to doing engineering is that my community college offers an associates in mechanical engineer, but not in physics. I could get that before I transfer, but a lot of the classes I would have to take might not transfer to the schools I'm thinking about transferring to (aside from the engineering and math classes, so like some of the social sciences and humanities)

    I feel like I like engineering and physics equally, I've taken 3 engineering classes and 2 physics classes and I really can't decide which one I want to major in.

    I'm taking statics as well as physics 2 right now and they're both pretty interesting. I flip between which class is my favorite depending on what we study.

    In statics I like summing all of the moments and pretty much using logic and a bit of math to solve very complex problems. I think electromagnetism in physics was the coolest thing I've ever studied. Modern Physics and astrophysics seem to be what draws my attention to physics the most, but I haven't even taken any classes that relate to those topics.

    Things I don't really care for about statics are when you get into centroids and the physics behind screws. In physics I don't really care to learn about mechanical waves, and optics are cool but the problems aren't really fun to solve like certain statics problems are.

    I really love math, especially calculus. I'm also a math tutor at my college and I've taken all the math classes up to calc 3. While I really like math, I can't JUST do math, that bores me. I feel like I want to include it with a science such as physics or engineering. One of the things that worries me is that engineers don't use that much math in the real world. I think things like line integrals and triple integrals are awesome and it would suck to learn them and then never use them again

    Obviously, the other thing that is drawing me towards engineering is that all I need is a BS and I can get a pretty good job. With physics I would have to go to grad school, which isn't a big deal but it's a bigger commitment.

    One other main thing that pushes me away from physics is the school I would want to transfer to would kinda screw me over and have me take like 65 physics credits in 4 semesters. With engineering I would have some humanities to balance it out.

    I really can't decide on what I want to do, I love physics and math but engineering is pretty cool too.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 11, 2016 #2


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    Studying for a bachelor's degree in either would require similar set of courses for about the first two years. Engineering degree would make entry into the more numerous engineering jobs compared to "physics/physicist" jobs.
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