Physics at Messiah College
As a physics major at Messiah College, you’ll thrive in a Christian environment known for its intellectually challenging atmosphere.
Messiah’s Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in physics degree program provides you with a rigorous, multi-faceted educational experience combined with a solid introduction into computer science and statistics—all in a Christian context.
Physics major distinctives
As a physics major at Messiah College, you’ll be able to:
- Choose from a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree
- Take challenging courses such as Classical and Analytical Mechanics; Electricity and Magnetism; and Quantum Mechanics.
- Secure an internship in nearby Harrisburg, Pennsylvania’s capital.
- Participate in cosmic ray detection research with the support of NASA and the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.
- Study with professors whose scholarly interests include cosmic ray detection and thin film physics.
- Work alongside other students in projects related to communications technology, assistance for disabled persons, sustainable energy, transportation technologies, and water resources.
- Choose a second major in mathematics, engineering, and/or computer science.
- Present your work professionally, on campus at our annual SEH Symposium, or regionally and/or nationally at professional meetings attended by students and faculty.
- Potentially attend graduate school fully funded if you are a strong college graduate in the sciences.
- Earn a minor in statistics, a strong add-on to a physics major and a distinctive program that is unique among Christian colleges & universities.
Career options for physics majors
As a graduate of the physics program, students are equipped to secure jobs in areas such as:
- Secondary education
- Higher education
- Graduate studies
For more information on career planning for the physics program, visit the Messiah College Career and Professional Development Center.
Internship, research and teaching opportunities for physics majors
- A variety of internship opportunities are available in the Harrisburg region.
- Faculty and student research in cosmic ray detection with the support of NASA and the Fermi National Accelerator Lab
- All majors completing the physics teaching certification complete sophomore and junior field experience semester in their second and third year, as well as a full-time professional semester (student-teaching) in their fourth year.
About our program
You’ll take courses such as such as Classical and Analytical Mechanics; Electricity and Magnetism; and Quantum Mechanics and study with professors who have a variety of scholarly interests from cosmic ray detection to thin film physics.
The Bachelor of Arts degree traditionally provides a broad-based physics program with more liberal arts emphasis. The B.A. physics degree at Messiah give you a strong physics education while still leaving plenty of room for electives, and possibility to add a minor or second major if desired. The B.A. degree is also the best for students wishing to study one semester abroad.
The Bachelor of Science in physics degree is designed to offer a stronger technical background in the discipline, with four more required courses. So, the B.S. degree is ideal for you if you want to get as much physics as you can out of your college experience. Most students heading for graduate school choose this option, but it is not required. You will not be able to fit as many electives in your schedule with the B.S. degree, but with careful planning it is still possible to add a minor, and possibly (especially if you come in with some AP credits) even a second major.
Both inside and outside of the classroom, you’ll have the opportunity to complete projects and research that you can present during our annual research symposium. And during the summer, you even may be able to participate in summer research funded by the National Science Foundation.
With a solid theoretical and applied core of courses offered in our physics program, you’ll be ready for a career in industry, education, government, or for graduate school where you’ll be well prepared to specialize in a variety of fields.
If teaching physics interests you, you can apply to Messiah’s teacher education program in addition to your physics degree. You’ll take required physics courses and also take a sequence of education courses that prepare you to take the state-required exam to become a certified secondary ( grades 7-12) physics teacher in public or private schools.