Physics is more than the basic science that brings us closest to comprehending the universe and the laws of nature — it is also the foundation for a technological economy. The physics curriculum is an opportunity to learn the power of scientific thinking, to build a respect for evidence, and to see the consistency of natural laws. Southern’s physics students go on to do research, engineering, and systems development in industry or to study advanced physics, materials science or engineering in graduate school.
The Master of Science program in Applied Physics is an interdisciplinary program that offers students the opportunity to complete graduate studies in physics with a particular emphasis on applied research and technology development for industry. The program is a formally recognized Professional Science Master's degree program, meaning that in addition to science courses, students are also required to take courses in management. The program in Applied Physics has two tracks — materials science/ nanotechnology and optics/optical instrumentation — intended to develop the state's workforce in the established optics and materials science industries, as well as in the emerging nanotechnology sector.