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Programs The road to a PhD after a BS in Physics

  1. Gradschool to study something I may not like

    2 vote(s)
  2. Military 3-6 years to study more and make up my mind

    2 vote(s)
  3. Get a job doing reseach or teaching

    3 vote(s)
  4. other

    1 vote(s)
  1. Mar 16, 2008 #1
    I am about to finish my undergrad career and receive a bachelors of science in both mathematics and physics. Now I have done a great deal in the last 4 years:
    2 research projects, 1 year on one and 1.5 years on the other both involving computational physics
    I did a summer internship
    Graded for a semester
    Tutored for a year

    Now I feel that my resume beyond that is also quite impressive just not as science oriented, but it does demonstrate great personal motivation and great management skills.
    The pitfall to my application to graduate schools was my physics gre scores, they were bad.

    Now I am in the predicament of either accepting full funding at a respectable school studding something I don’t have a true love for or spend the next year memorizing physics formulas and retaking the physics gre and reapplying to grad schools. Now to be completely honest I am not sure what I want to study in graduate school. I just really find too much interest in all the areas of advanced study I have touched.

    I have also considered spending the next 3-6 years in the military. I feel that this road gives me the advantage of time to decided upon what I really want to focus on in grad school and I feel that this time would give me an opportunity to go back and look at all of these topics again and truly understand them not just rush through the key points so I can Ace a test. Also I more then likely would not be looking to make a career out of the military the plan would be to go to grad school after this.

    So what I am looking for is advice on this. Also if any one knows if there are any opportunities to so physics related things in the military? And I am not talking about oceanography or meteorology.

    Thank you!
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 16, 2008 #2


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  4. Mar 16, 2008 #3
    I do not think that grad school is a good choice if your reason for going is "I don't know what else to do with my life."

    Better to do something productive (and with a net POSITIVE income) for a few years while you sort out what you want to do with your life. Grad school will still be there if/when you decide to go in the future.
  5. Mar 16, 2008 #4
    Thank you Astronuc those links were helpful!

    ks_physicist thank you as well. I dont feel that I don't know what else to do with my life, I know it will be physics I am just not sure on what area of physics I would like to spend the rest of my life doing. But I am also thinking I should figure out that part before I go further down the road of education...
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