Some major options and career choices are easy enough to decipher: if you take classes to be a teacher, you can expect that in a number of years, you will be passing along knowledge and helping to build futures. If you decide to become a nurse, you can expect to administer aid to the sick and recovering. However, with a physics major, the roadmap to getting a degree and a job can seem a bit more tentative.
Students with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Physics or Engineering Physics can seek career opportunities in research, development, science, engineering, education, medicine, law, business, and the military. Physics graduates acquire a highly transferrable and valued skillset putting them in high demand in diverse sectors. These skills relate to numeracy, problem-solving, data analysis and the communication of complex ideas, as well as a wider understanding of how the world works, on a scientific and human level. Thanks to this valued skillset, physics graduates earn more on the job.
To better determine the path to take with their degree, students can take advantage of research and internship opportunities available to help prepare them for the career of their choice.
According to the American Physical Society, over the course of 12 years (1995-2007), about one-half of the students with a Bachelor’s degree in Physics went on to graduate school, some to graduate in other fields, while most went on to receive a higher degree in Physics or Astronomy. The other half of the students with a Bachelor’s in Physics went directly into the workforce.
53% of those in the workplace went to work in the private sector. 13% went to work at College’s and Universities, while 11% worked in High School. 10% acquired Civilian Government and National Lab jobs. 8% went into Active Military and the final 5% went into other fields.
One of the coolest things about a physics degree is that even if none of the career options typically associated with the degree interest you, you can use the mathematical proficiency gained through your degree to enter the financial world. The media and entertainment industry is also a viable option as physicists are often in demand for roles in scientific journalism, computer game programming and film special effects. Other potential options include manufacturing, transport, architecture, and communications.