Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2018-2019

Science

College of Humanities and Sciences

Concentration(s):
Physics
Program description

The interdisciplinary program in science provides students with a broad, yet fundamental, grounding in the sciences. In addition to the spectrum of required mathematics and science courses, students select a concentration from biology, chemistry, physics or professional science.

Career opportunities

The B.S. in Science provides a foundation for science oriented careers ranging from teaching and meteorology to research and technical sales. Flexibility is available within the curriculum for students to select specific courses to prepare them for careers or professional level training programs in the health sciences. Many students pursuing interdisciplinary sciences as a primary major have sufficient elective space to pursue a minor in another discipline. The professional science concentration is designed for students who wish to focus on specific science courses required for graduate or professional school admission.

Change of major requirements

None


Bachelor-level job titles
  • Automotive engineer
  • Environmental compliance inspector
  • Fuel cell engineer
  • Geophysical data technician
  • Materials scientist
  • Middle school teacher
  • Occupational health and safety specialist
  • Quality control analyst
  • Regulatory affairs specialist
  • Technical writer
  • Web developer
Degree requirements in Bulletin
Plan of study in Bulletin
Highest level of math required
  • MATH 200
Science required
  • 5+ additional science courses
Foreign language requirements
  • Yes
Additional tuition/fees
  • Yes
GPA requirements (to progress/graduate in the major)
  • 2.0 overall GPA required to graduate; a minimum grade of C is required in each prerequisite course
Department name:
Interdisciplinary Science Program
Building/room location:
Oliver Hall, Kapp Wing 1001 West Main Street P.O. Box 842006 Richmond, VA 23284
Campus (where 75% of courses are taken):
Monroe park
Phone:
(804) 828-8240
Email:
sciadvising@vcu.edu

Major map compass icon
Major map

Explore
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor each semester to discuss tutoring, course electives, and degree progression.
  • Complete MATH 201 and PHYS by end of first year.
  • Utilize Campus Learning Center resources.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Register to vote in Virginia and explore Richmond, including its museums, parks, festivals, and cultural events!
  • Apply to live in the ASPiRE, Globe, INNOVATE, or LEAD Living & Learning Programs.
  • Get involved with VCU Student Government or one of over 450 clubs and organizations.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Learn about your study abroad options by visiting a study abroad fair and attending a First Advising Session in the Global Education Office.
  • Review the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs(OMSA) website for programs, events, and resources.
  • Join a living-learning program such as VCU Globe.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Explore “What Can I Do With This Major” to learn about employers/ job titles in your field of study.
  • Complete your Handbook profile and opt-in to industry email lists to learn about opportunities.
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Attend a Pre-Professional Health Interest Workshop, if you are considering a professional health program (medicine, pharmacy, etc.).
  • Explore Career Pathways on VCU Career Services’ website.
  • Practice independent living skills (such as money management, self-care, time management, and personal responsibility.) 

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses and your plan to complete the Biology core and collateral coursework.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes in your major, and strategies for success in your degree program.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Take service-learning classes or volunteer to address a social issue (ConnectVA & HandsOnRVA). 
  • Join a student organization such as Medical Physics Scholastic Society, Women in Science, STEM at VCU, Black Women in STEM, or a pre-professional health track club.
  • Explore peer leadership opportunities or apply for I-LEAD Connect or Alternative Spring Break.  
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week.
  • Get to know other VCU students from all over the world at a monthly Global Café.
  • Join a cultural organization.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Attend OMSA Social Justice Conference.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Create a draft of your resume and go to drop-ins at VCU Career Services to have it reviewed.
  • Attend Career & Internship Fairs and career events throughout the year to explore your interests.  
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Conduct numerous informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Using LinkedIn, connect to at least 10 people. Check out the VCU alumni page in My Network.
  • Consider who you would like to have serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   

Experience
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • See your advisor each semester to discuss degree progression and plans for elective coursework.
  • Talk to science faculty about possible ideas for INSC 490 capstone course in senior year.
  • Conduct independent undergraduate research. Consider attending a scientific meeting and presenting a poster with your research advisor.
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Create and complete a science related community-engaged research project.
  • Attend civic meetings, such as school board, neighborhood associations, city council, or state legislative sessions.
  • Attend at least two or three public talks or other events advertised by the department.    
  • Attend a program through the Wellness Resource Center.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • With careful planning, a study abroad semester works well during junior or senior year.  
  • Consider becoming a diversity ambassador with the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.  
  • Apply for a Fulbright or other post-graduate international fellowship program through VCU’s National Scholarship Office  
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Develop tangible skills in internships that you can demonstrate to employers.
  • Meet with a career adviser to discuss your career direction and create an action plan
  • Go to a conference for a professional association, club or other organization. 
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Based on career goals, talk to a career/academic advisor or a faculty member about whether graduate school or a job fits your career goals.
  • Join job listserv sites that provide access to job postings in desired fields. Revisit gap analysis assessment and continue adjusting strategic career plan with Career Services.

Excel
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met.
  • Take supplemental courses that will help you build your skill set and resume including internship, directed and/or independent study, labs, preceptorship and service-learning.   
GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY
  • Consider jobs in the nonprofit sector.
  • Consider applying for a year-long service opportunity after graduation through programs like VCU AmeriCorps, Literacy Lab, Peace Corps, Fulbright Student Scholars, Teach for America and City Year.
  • Consider getting a job as a tutor or Supplemental Instruction (SI) leader in the Campus Learning Center or in Student Athlete Support Services for a course you did well in or enjoyed.
BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in STEM.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations. Schedule a mock interview with VCU Career Services.
  • Attend Office of Multicultural Student Affairs I Love Diversity Week.
GET REAL EXPERIENCE
  • Present your research at conference/meeting such as UROP Undergraduate Research Symposium or other discipline- specific conference. 
  • Gain practical experience related to your career goal through internships, externships and skill building.  
PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
  • Complete necessary exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for next steps beyond graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Review your personal statement or cover letter, and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services. 
Visit majormaps.vcu.edu for the online version with links.
Sponsored by the Office of the Provost
Major map compass icon
2018-2019

Science

College of Humanities and Sciences

Concentration(s):
Physics
MAXIMIZE COURSE AND DEGREE PLANNING GET CONNECTED WITH YOUR COMMUNITY BUILD CULTURAL COMPETENCE GET REAL EXPERIENCE PREPARING FOR LIFE AFTER COLLEGE
Explore Year 1
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor each semester to discuss tutoring, course electives, and degree progression.
  • Complete MATH 201 and PHYS by end of first year.
  • Utilize Campus Learning Center resources.
  • Attend Ready, Set, Go – Sophomore Transition Experience.
  • Explore “What Can I Do With This Major” to learn about employers/ job titles in your field of study.
  • Complete your Handbook profile and opt-in to industry email lists to learn about opportunities.
  • Complete a “Gap Analysis” Strategic Plan with your academic or career advisor.
Experience Year 2
  • Schedule an appointment with your advisor and explore minors, certificates, and skills-based value added courses and your plan to complete the Biology core and collateral coursework.  
  • Talk to your professors about research interests, picking future classes in your major, and strategies for success in your degree program.
  • Take service-learning classes or volunteer to address a social issue (ConnectVA & HandsOnRVA). 
  • Join a student organization such as Medical Physics Scholastic Society, Women in Science, STEM at VCU, Black Women in STEM, or a pre-professional health track club.
  • Explore peer leadership opportunities or apply for I-LEAD Connect or Alternative Spring Break.  
  • Attend Diversity Scholars in Research Week
  • Get to know other VCU students from all over the world at a monthly Global Café
  • Join a cultural organization.
  • Consider short-term, semester and year long Study Abroad opportunities.
  • Attend OMSA Social Justice Conference.
  • Conduct numerous informational interviews or shadow someone in a field of career interest.
  • Using LinkedIn, connect to at least 10 people. Check out the VCU alumni page in My Network.
  • Consider who you would like to have serve as professional and academic references for future letters of recommendation.   
Year 3
  • See your advisor each semester to discuss degree progression and plans for elective coursework.
  • Talk to science faculty about possible ideas for INSC 490 capstone course in senior year.
  • Conduct independent undergraduate research. Consider attending a scientific meeting and presenting a poster with your research advisor.
  • Develop tangible skills in internships that you can demonstrate to employers.
  • Meet with a career adviser to discuss your career direction and create an action plan
  • Go to a conference for a professional association, club or other organization. 
  • Based on career goals, talk to a career/academic advisor or a faculty member about whether graduate school or a job fits your career goals.
  • Join job listserv sites that provide access to job postings in desired fields. Revisit gap analysis assessment and continue adjusting strategic career plan with Career Services
Excel Year 4
  • Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor a semester before your anticipated graduation to ensure all graduation requirements will be met.
  • Take supplemental courses that will help you build your skill set and resume including internship, directed and/or independent study, labs, preceptorship and service-learning.   
  • Read scholarly articles about diversity in STEM.
  • Reflect on your own cultural competency, and be prepared to answer interview questions that outline how you have worked with diverse populations. Schedule a mock interview with VCU Career Services
  • Attend Office of Multicultural Student Affairs I Love Diversity Week.
  • Complete necessary exams, applications, or self-marketing activities for next steps beyond graduation.
  • Research prospective employers and create a job or graduate school search strategy at least 8 months before graduation.
  • Review your personal statement or cover letter, and do a mock interview at VCU Career Services.