The combination of technical and problem-solving skills developed by physics graduates makes them highly sought after by prospective employers in engineering, chemistry, and other technical fields; extremely well prepared to teach at the middle or high school level; and well positioned for graduate school.
Common career pathways involve work in materials science, space exploration, aerospace, technical instrumentation, fundamental research, and the computer industry. A physics major is also an excellent stepping-stone for further studies in a wide range of interdisciplinary fields such as medical physics, engineering, meteorology, hydrology, geophysics, and economics.
Careers for Physics Majors
- Atomic, Molecular, or Optical Physicist
- Computer Programmer
- Laser Engineer
- Nuclear Imaging Technologist
- Nuclear Physicist
- Research Scientist
- Space Physicist
A typical starting salary for a physics major is $55,500. The typical salary after 10-19 years is $123,000.
*Note: Salary information is provided for general reference only. APU does not guarantee the accuracy of the figures listed, and cannot predict or promise a specific salary for any graduate. For the most current salary estimates, please visit payscale.com.
Job Titles of People with Physics Degrees
- Intel Fellow, Director of the Photonics Technology Lab, Intel
- Spokesman, Muon Anomalous Magnetic Moment Experiment, Brookhaven National Laboratory
- Marketing Group Director, Food Service and Hospitality Division, Coca-Cola
- Engineer, Space Station Freedom
- CEO, Orchid BioSciences
- Airborne Sensors Product Branch Chief, U.S. Department of Defense Missile Defense Agency Test Resources Directorate
- Director, Business Development, Lockheed Martin IS&S
- Senior Engineer, Cryomagnetics, Inc.
- New Product Introduction Engineer, Volex, Inc.
- Programmer/Analyst, Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs
- Senior Engineering Manager, Nokia Mobile Phones
- Chief of Clinical Physics, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center
- Scientific Advisor, Defense Threat Reduction Agency, TDAT
- Research Engineer, Center for Applied Optics
- Statistical Engineer (Vehicle Assembly), General Motors
- Staff Scientist, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
- Product Manager, Carl Zeiss Nano Technology Systems