Physics, the most fundamental science of the physical world, combines the excitement of experimental discovery and the beauty of mathematics. Physicists, from Newton and Einstein to those of today, explore everything from the structure of the atom to the universe itself. The program in physics at LVC is designed to develop an understanding of the fundamental laws dealing with motion, force, energy, heat, light, electricity, magnetism, atomic and nuclear structure, and the properties of matter.
The Physics Department is committed to intensive training in physics within the context of a strong liberal arts education. Students majoring in physics work closely with faculty members and have the opportunity to work as paid laboratory teaching assistants. Additionally, students are encouraged to participate in summer research projects supported by College funds and external grants. A local chapter of the Society of Physics Students offers students the opportunity to participate in field trips, guest lectures, and a fall picnic.
The Physics Department also directs the "3+2" Engineering program.
The facilities of the Physics Department are located on the second floor of the recently revitalized Neidig-Garber Science Center. In addition to the introductory physics laboratories, the department maintains an atomic/nuclear laboratory, computational physics laboratory, electronics laboratory, optics laboratory, atomic force microscope laboratory, and student research laboratory.
The requirements for the physics major, like most other majors at LVC, are designed so students can study abroad for one semester (typically in their junior or senior year). Hence, students can combine their study of physics with the richness of an international experience by participating in any College-wide study-abroad program (e.g., New Zealand Program).
Students major in physics as preparation for professional careers in industry as physicists and engineers, and education as high school and college teachers. Other possibilities include technical writing, sales, and marketing. Physics students can continue their professional training by going to graduate school in physics or engineering, or to other professional schools offering degrees in such fields as health physics and business.