This blog is another special request this time from @federico_padua and he asked me to talk a little bit about what kinds of jobs people can get with Physics degrees. Pretty tough topic really but one that I think is really important because in this really tight job market you have to be creative in your search. The days of “I have X degree, I deserve Y job” are over...so, with that in mind...what the hell do you do with a Physics degree?
Engineering - Lots of good engineers come from the Physics space. A
degree in Physics gives you a grab scientific mind and a ton of
experience in mathematics...which is the core of many programming
functions. Additionally, you’ve probably use Fortran or MATLAB to do
some basic programming functions...why not take a class or two and learn
some Computer Science theory.
Jobs - This is probably the most obvious but there are quite a few
research jobs out there. Some of them are at the big labs (think Los
Alamos) but also in academia. You really have to look for these though
and spend a ton of time networking to find a role like this...oh, and be
prepared to make a lot less money than you were thinking. If you work
in Research you do it for the work, not the cash.
Sales - Yeah, that’s right, sales. You went through all that schooling
and you end up in Sales. Life sucks eh? Well guess what? Some of the
best sales folks I know come from technical backgrounds and do VERY
well in life. The trick is to find a role that will allow you to
leverage your technical background....as well as your sparkling
personality to become some sort of super-salesperson. Most sales-people
are not technical, most technical people can’t sell.....if you can do
both, you win!
there are a bunch of other jobs you can do - teaching? recruiting?
You name it. The great thing about a degree like Physics is that it
gives you a chance to do very “technical” work but also have some softer
skills that come from a Liberal Arts degree.
love to hear from anyone out there with a Physics degree about what you
do and have done to help anyone else looking for advice.