What every Freshman Physics Major should know

Welcome to the Physics Department. We are very excited to get to know you and work with you.  We know you have a lot of questions, so hopefully we can answer a few here. 

1- Ask Questions: If ever you feel lost or don't know what to do come ask us. The Physics Department is located in ROM 118. Sister Nelson is happy to field your questions, answer what she can, or get you in contact with someone who knows. It's really true, you'll never know unless you ask.

2- Get to know the Faculty:  Your physics instructors are great resources. Did you know that a physics faculty member should be assigned to you as a faculty mentor? Find out who they are (or come see Sis Nelson and she can help you) and go introduce yourself.  Ask them about a career in physics, or how to set up your grad plan. Make sure they know who you are and that you're physics major.  Too often we don't get to know you until the upper division courses so speak up and make yourself known early.

3- Get involved: There are a lot of things going on all the time in our department.

  • Join the Society of Physics Students right away.  Get on their email list and Brainhoney site so you can stay up to date on upcoming activities. 
  • Start asking about and getting involved in some of the research projects we have going on (look on pg 22 of the student handook).
  • Be a grader, TA, or Tutor!  Nothing will help you remember and retain the skills you've learned more than having the chance to review them often.  And getting paid to do it doesn't hurt either. 
  • Attend the monthly Colloquium.  In the Fall and Winter semesters we host a colloquium each month at 2:00 pm in ROM 172. This is a great opportunity to learn about cutting edge research, possible internship and graduate school opportunities, and do a little networking.
  • Actively look for and participate in the STEM and Career Fairs sponsored by the College. These are great places to get connected with grad schools, potential employers, and just learn what's available. Seats fill up fast so be proactive.

4- Educate yourself: Don't wait until it's too late to find out you don't meet all the requirements to graduate, or you can't register because you're off track, or didn't know how to sequence your classes.  Be proactive and take advantage of the resources around you. Visit our satellite advising center in AUS 106 and speak will Sister Groom or Brother Cornick. Find out about track adjustments and when to apply for them. Talk with your faculty advisor to make sure you're on-track with your education goals. Follow the Professional Development Plan.  Again ASK QUESTIONS!

5- Physics Student Handbook: Read and become familiar with the Student Handbook. This is a great resource and can answer many questions.