Space Science and Astrophysics

The program in space science is one of distinctively few such programs nationwide offered at the undergraduate level. The presence of the 21-meter space tracking antenna and radio telescope on campus and the availability of the extraordinary facilities in the Space Science Center for our students and faculty for instruction and research provide a solid foundation for the program. Excellent faculty with diverse backgrounds in space related science and technology allow students to tap the full potential of our state-of-the-art facilities. Graduates from the program will have a breadth of knowledge, experience, skills and adaptability — the marketable tools of new and exciting professional careers in space science, aerospace and the telecommunications industry.

The main goal of this program is to prepare graduates for professional opportunities in applied technologies such as astronautical engineering, space system development and testing, satellite tracking and telemetry, and telecommunications electronics. The program provides a broad but sound education in the basic physical and mathematical sciences, as well as specialized instruction in astronomy, astrophysics, electronics, space systems, and satellite technology. Research opportunities in astrophysics, space systems, engineering, engineering technology, and telecommunications are also available through the space science program. Graduates of this program will be particularly well qualified to seek positions with NASA, aerospace companies, public and private science organizations, research facilities, colleges, astronomical observatories and in other commercial industries.

The program in astrophysics helps to prepare students who wish to pursue a graduate-level degree in physics and astrophysics and will be applying for admission to graduate schools in physics in those fields. This program combines rigorous upper level courses in advanced topics in astrophysics (with an emphasis on connections to concepts seen in core physics classes) along with numerous opportunities to pursue research projects with faculty members. The main goal of this program is to provide students with both a broad base of knowledge regarding currently active fields in modern astrophysics coupled with extensive experience in research, thus making the students very competitive for admission into graduate programs.