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Physics

You will learn in small classes with faculty members who know you as an individual. Lab work in state-of-the art facilities will be central to your studies. As a senior physics major, you will conduct an in-depth research project with a faculty member. The projects often produce work that is presented at professional conferences or published in scholarly journals. Astronomy is offered as minor as part of the Physics Department.


Andrew Morrison '14

A student’s vision: a sustainable energy start-up 

Physics major Andrew Morrison ’14  double-minored in math and philosophy and took courses in economics and public speaking, among other subjects. He figured he would need a broad range of skills to launch his own company. He wants to to use a variety of technologies, some of which he hopes to develop, to produce sustainable energy and products with reduced environmental impact.

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At Hamilton College, Morrison found opportunities for research. He was part of a team of  students who spent a summer working on a national physics research project, an amazing experience, Morrison says. Their work was related to the weak force in physics, part of the aCORN Project, organized by the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

One of the reasons he picked Hamilton was its new, state-of-the-art Taylor Science Center.

“It was a big draw for me because at some of the other schools, the science buildings I was looking at were older, you know, past their prime, and not exactly the caliber that Hamilton has,” he says.

 

Stephanie Higgins Bealing ’04 presenting at a Hartford Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs Awards ceremony, just before she won an award.
Stephanie Higgins Bealing ’04 presenting at a Hartford Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs Awards ceremony, just before she won an award.

A graduate’s progress: more degrees, a new direction

Since her Hamilton College days, physics major Stephanie Higgins Bealing ’04 has earned two advanced degrees and launched two businesses. “Studying physics definitely prepared me for all of the problem solving that is needed when you run your own show,” she says.

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After Hamilton, Bealing studied materials science engineering, with a focus on fuel cell research, at the University of Connecticut’s Institute of Materials Science. She also did research at Imperial College London. Bealing landed a job at Rolls-Royce in the United Kingdom, but after a few years returned to school to earn a master’s in business administration from Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School of Business. That’s when she fell in love with entrepreneurship.

“I founded my own company, Replacement Lens Express, in 2010, and am very happily self-employed. Last year I started another company, Little Red Golf Shop, which I hope will meet with the same success as RLE,” she says.

Bealing’s minor in studio art played a role in her trajectory, even though she says she nearly failed ceramics.

“My ceramics professor was slightly baffled that I could comprehend quantum physics yet I couldn’t throw a decent mug. He encouraged me to look into ceramic engineering, which is what led me to UConn.,” she says.