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Physics Professions | Where physicists make a career

Whoever is fascinated to understand and explore how the Nature works, should study Physics. It is not only an exciting and challenging field of study, but also an employment guarantee. The list of professions for physicists is long, so many doors are open to them.

Academic physics professions

A natural career track is the academic career. After completing a bachelor and master degree, it starts with a doctorate (PhD degree), usually followed by several-year postdoctoral stays. The long-term goal is often a professorship. The professional profile of an academic researcher includes an interesting combination of teaching, research and management activities.

Beyond classical physics jobs

Physicists can not only make a career in their immediate research field, but they have a high level of professional flexibility. In addition to the "classical" field of activity of academic research and teaching, the sectors of industry and services are becoming increasingly important.

Trained physicists are in particular able to perform a variety of other professions from the so-called MINT domain (mathematics, computer science, natural sciences, engineering) because they are generally applicable. In the course of their studies, physicists learn how to deal analytically with complex problems and tasks and to solve them according to general procedures. This ability can be applied to many professions. In addition, due to the mathematical basis, Physics is always application-oriented, practice-oriented and problem-oriented. This makes them interesting for many employers. Physicists often work inter- or transdisciplinary, that is, at the interfaces between scientific and technical professions.

Examples for this are:

  • Material technology
  • Medical technology
  • Nano technology
  • Microsystem technology
  • Mechanical engineering
  • Electrical engineering
  • Precision engineering
  • Eye Optics
  • Production
  • Chemistry

Quite a few physicists also work in professions that are remote from universities and laboratory professions, research and development. Here is an (incomplete) list of other possible fields of application:

  • IT / Data processing
  • Banks / Insurance companies
  • Project management
  • Logistics jobs
  • Business audits / Consulting
  • Patent attorneys
  • Journalist (for science subjects)