Many diverse companies hire physics graduates. These include companies that design new devices and develop new technologies, organizations that use high-tech instrumentation such as hospitals, consulting companies, and finance companies. A list of those in Massachusetts who have hired physics graduates in the last three years is given here. Lists for many other states may be found here.
A physics degree provides a good background for a variety of careers outside science. Below we describe a few of them (some of which require an additional postgraduate degree once you complete your physics degree). Many more may be found found here. The American Physical Society also has a great deal of information about careers for physics graduates on their careers page and their careers guidance page.
In order to communicate effectively the latest breakthroughs in science to the public, you must understand the science behind the discoveries. With a major in physics you are well-placed for a career in science journalism. For further information see the National Association of Science Writers.
Patent Attorneys require a background in one or more physical sciences, and a thus a degree in physics is excellent preparation for a graduate program in patent law.
Software Engineering for Science Applications
Examples of this are companies that develop software tools for scientists, such as MathWorks, and government agencies who use mathematical modeling to analyze real-world problems, such as the EPA.
Science teachers, especially those with physics backgrounds, are in high demand both here and in US schools abroad. For further information, see the American Association of Physics Teachers.
Wall Street banks and other financial institutions require sophisticated mathematical modeling to price financial derivatives and assess credit risk. For further information see, for example, the graduate program in Mathematical Finance at BU, or contact a financial institution such as State Street.
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