Earn your degree in physics
Houghton's Physics Program and Engineering Physics
Students studying physics and engineering at Houghton learn about the most basic principles at work in the physical universe, and how to serve God by applying these principles to meet people’s needs. Students can earn a degree in physics or applied physics with an engineering emphasis. We are very proud of our 100% success rate (see below)!
At Houghton, we believe the best way to learn physics is by doing physics.
As soon as we introduce a subject, we put our knowledge into practice. In our introductory courses, we combine lecture and lab into a seamless experience – no more waiting a week to carry out the lab. Instead of just lectures about orbital mechanics, Houghton students plan space missions to the moon, asteroids and outer planets. In the Science Honors Program students work with an interdisciplinary team of professors from physics, chemistry, biology, communication and writing to study climate change – not just from a textbook, but by designing and building instrument packages and launching them to the edge of outer space.
Students recently planned trips to Mars in PHYS 251: Mechanics I. The project assignment and student presentations can be found on the course website.
Real World Experience
Physics majors at Houghton get experience in the real world. As early as their sophomore year, students may choose an advisor and a research project. By graduation, they will have completed a significant, multi-year project they present at a scientific meeting. Houghton students and faculty have carried out nuclear physics experiments at Los Alamos National Laboratory, nuclear fusion projects at SUNY Geneseo and Ohio University, and nanotechnology research at Cornell University.
Close Working Relationships
Our physics program allows professors and students to develop close working relationships with each other as we strive together toward the goal of academic excellence and spiritual growth. The student offices are right next to the professors' offices. After the formal classes end, we spend our afternoons working together at the office chalkboards, discussing research problems, and encouraging one another.
One hundred percent of graduates from Houghton’s physics program are employed or attend graduate school within one year of graduation. Approximately 60% attend graduate school in programs like particle physics, aerospace engineering, quantum optics, biomedical engineering, planetary science, math, astrophysics, medicine and more. Others choose to begin their careers immediately. Positions held by graduates include medical physicist, meteorologist, mechanical engineer, cyclotron engineer, aerospace engineer, product analyst, research physicist, defense consultant, biomedical engineer, math and physics teacher and more.
Houghton College Highlights
- A dynamic community of Christians living, learning and experiencing life together
- A top nationally-ranked Christian college, as reported by U.S. News & World Report, Forbes and the Princeton Review
- Academic programs in over 70 areas of study
- Learn from experts in the scientific community through our science and math colloquia
- Collaborative research opportunities in our summer research institute
- Study abroad opportunities around the world; over 50% of Houghton students study off-campus before they graduate
- Interdisciplinary honors programs, including a science honors program
- Beautiful scenic campus in Western New York State
To learn more
Check out the Physics Department Brochure.