A physics degree can lead to a career as a researcher, entrepreneur, engineer, or teacher. Studying physics gives you the tool-set necessary to tackle challenging problems in a wide variety of fields.
Why Study Physics?
Physics is the examination of the natural world at its most fundamental level, serving as the foundation for all of science and engineering. But, more than anything, physics is a way of thinking that aims to understand complex phenomena from first principles. This is why you will find physicists working in nearly every field and industry. A major or minor in physics will cultivate strong analytic and research skills that can lead to a wide variety of careers and graduate programs:
Careers focused on basic and applied research in astrophysics and space science, atomic and nuclear physics, photonics, medical physics, computational physics, biophysics, mathematics and statistics, material science, quantum information science, and geophysics.
Engineering careers in a variety of disciplines, such as electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, nuclear engineering, aerospace engineering, manufacturing/design engineering, and systems engineering.
Careers in the education profession, such as K-12 teachers, community college and university professors, and education research.
Careers in the business and financial sectors, such as quantitative economics, business analytics, technical consulting, product development, and other entrepreneurial activities.
Careers in computational fields like software engineering, data analytics, computational science, quantum computing, and data visualization.
Graduate education at the Master's and Ph.D. level in a variety of fields, such as theoretical and experimental physics, mathematics, chemistry, astrophysics, biophysics, neuroscience, computational and data science, and many engineering specializations.
The following links provide valuable information pertaining to careers accessible to physics majors: APS - Why study physics?, APS - Careers in physics, AIP - Career statistics, and SPS - Career resources.
The Department of Physics at Saint Anselm College has a long history of educating leading scientists, engineers, and teachers in the liberal arts tradition. Our alumni go onto work in a wide range of fields and receive graduate degrees in science and engineering.
DEKA Research and Development
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
NH Department of Transportation
Rolf Jensen & Associates
University of Michigan
Whiting-Turner Contracting Co
Recent Graduate School
Georgia Institute of Technology
University of Notre Dame
Penn State University
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
A recent study, carried out by the Joint Task Force on Undergraduate Physics Programs states:
[...] nearly all physics majors who seek employment after completing their bachelor’s degrees find a job of some sort. Only 4% of majors graduating in 2011 and 2012 were unemployed one year after graduation, and only 6.2% of physics graduates ages 22 to 27 were unemployed in 2014 [...]. While the average unemployment rate in the overall economy was around 10% during the 2007−2008 period, it was only 6.8% for those holding physics degrees.
The National Society of Physics Students has put together an excellent “Careers Toolbox” for undergraduate physics students that analyzes recent employment trends for physics alumni and the steps necessary to transition into industry, graduate school, and the education field.