What is so exciting about physics?

This is a guest post by Sarah Morgan, a PhD student in the Theory of Condensed Matter Group at Cambridge University.

Cavendish Inspiring Women (CiW) is a group run by physics PhD students at Cambridge University. We’ve just launched our new booklet for girls – ‘What is so exciting about physics ?’ Download it here !

exciting physics leafletWhat is so exciting about physics and why should girls choose to study it beyond GCSE ? As young women who have studied physics, we know firsthand how fascinating it can be – which other subject lets you study everything from stars to brain networks?

So in light of the pitiful number of women studying physics A-level, we decided to put together a booklet with stories from different women about what they do and what physics means to them.

As well as showing how exciting physics can be, we also wanted to provide role models for girls who may not have met many scientists. We were very lucky to get contributions from a remarkable group of women who have done some amazing things! You might notice that most of them are still at a relatively early stage of their careers – we know that senior figures can be daunting and we wanted to find people who are easy to relate to.

Finally, we wanted to tackle the myth that if you study physics you’ll end up in a lab coat. In fact, physics can lead to a huge range of different careers – for example the booklet has articles from a lawyer, someone working on online games and others who work on medical applications of physics. They all have degrees in physics, but it’s certainly led them in different directions! Ultimately, there are few things you can’t do with a physics degree and the problem solving skills you learn are very valuable wherever you end up.

We hope you enjoy reading the booklet and the stories in it as much as we have. If you’d like to know more, or would like paper copies to distribute, please contact us at cavendishiw@gmail.com.