Helpful student resources covering everything from general physics and astronomy news to planning your post-graduation life.
Here are some sites to help you keep up on the latest discoveries in Physics and Astronomy:
- Physics Central - An educational/news page from the American Physical Society.
- Astronomy Picture of the Day - Check out some amazing astronomical photos.
- Physical Review Focus - Extracts of latest publications in Physical Review.
- Bad Astronomy - Actual good astronomer, and excellent science explainer Phil Plait promises the entire Universe in blog form, and delivers.
- The Planetary Society bloggers keep on top of the latest in Solar System missions and research.
Planning Your Post-graduate Career and Education
Worrying about what happens after you graduate? Consult with faculty for guidance, and check out some of these great resources online.
- Career Services - The University’s career services office can help you prepare for a career right out of college, or for further study at the graduate level
- American Physical Society careers - Resources for job-seekers in physics
- Physics Today Jobs - Science, engineering, and computing jobs Graduate school advice from the national Society of Physics Students
- Research Experiences for Undergraduates - The Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program from the National Science Foundation sponsors summer research fellowships that can help prepare you for a career in the sciences
- Statistical Research Center - Compiles data on who is hiring physics majors and other physics employment data. The Center also publishes general trends in physics careers.
Opportunities for Physics and Astronomy Students
- Seminar Series - Suggest visiting speakers or topics that would be of particular interest to physics and astronomy concentrators. Host speakers for lunch following their presentations, at which you can ask more questions about their presentations or their paths from P&A studies into their current fields.
- Recruitment - Help the department improve outreach to prospective students. Meet with prospective students and families to answer questions and give tours of the department. Call admitted students in April to answer questions and encourage them to visit. Assist current students’ recruitment efforts by developing presentations they can give when they visit their high schools at home over breaks.
- Computer coordinator - Suggest improvements and report problems with computers in student lounge and computer classroom.
- Tutors - Serve as a tutor or peer instructor for the introductory physics courses. Contact the instructors before the beginning of each semester to ask if jobs are available.
- Outreach to Colgate - Run demo days, sponsor egg drop contests, make liquid nitrogen ice cream, and other fun activities that give physics students a chance to get together and also invite their friends.
- Outreach to community - Meet with visiting school groups (coordinated by Joe Eakin). Make presentations at local schools. Develop new outreach programs, working with interested faculty.
- Outreach to alumni - Increase ties between physics and astronomy alumni and the current students. Contact alumni to gather information about careers and experiences since graduation. Ask alumni if they are willing to help current students with job networking. Invite alumni to join a department Facebook or LinkedIn group. Organize outreach events when alumni visit campus for homecoming or other events.
Physics, engineering and Astronomy outside of class:
- NASA—Form a team to propose an experiment for microgravity: ssep.ncesse.org.
- Designing and building projects—Build an LED cube (totally cool--check this out: youtube.com/watch?v=6mXM-oGggrM---this would be great for our new display area) or a trebuchet (who knows when you'll be called upon to defend the castle?), or a ham radio, or whatever else a group of students is interested in designing and building. Work with department technician Hans Benze.
- Conferences—Get together a group and go to a local conference! See nyss-aapt.org/.
- Physics Club—Be a part of Colgate's Physics Club - help with outreach, get together to discuss physics and hang out with your fellow physicists.
- Star 'Gate—Join fellow students interested in astrophotography. Contact them firstname.lastname@example.org, or view their work at on Instagram.
- Engineering Club—In recent years, the club has built hovercrafts and flown instrumented helium balloons hundreds of miles.
- Impulse—Join a student group dedicated to fostering inclusivity in science, technology, engineering, and math.
- T-shirt committee—Design and print department T-shirts!
- Sports coordinator—Organize intramural teams.
- Events coordinator—Organize lunches with faculty, department social hours, campus-wide outreach events such as demo days, viewings and discussions of APS webinars on employment and graduate schools, town-hall meetings with the department, and any other events you think of.
Where can I get funding for these projects?
- American Physical Society (APS) and American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) for travel to conferences
- APS and AAPT for outreach efforts (see Bauder fund of the AAPT)
- SGA Budget Allocation Committee for events
- Center for Learning, Teaching, and Research for conference attendance if you are making a presentation (not just observing)
- Physics and astronomy department for other needs.