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Physics Department

Department of Physics Overview

The Department of Physics provides students interested in physics and engineering with a fundamental understanding of and appreciation for science and the scientific endeavor. We help students develop critical thinking and quantitative reasoning abilities so they can make informed decisions regarding matters of science and technology. In addition, we give students in our department the skills necessary to pursue graduate studies or professional careers in industry. This is done by offering students an inspiring mix of courses firmly based on the newest trends in education pedagogy and cutting-edge research opportunities. One of the strengths of the Department is student-faculty research, through which students learn experimental techniques and theories applicable to the latest scientific questions, attend conferences, and co-author peer-reviewed publications.

Many physics majors have been admitted to highly-ranked universities to pursue graduate studies in physics and engineering. Examples include Yale, the University of Maryland, Johns Hopkins, Georgetown, Virginia Tech, MIT, Cornell, College of William and Mary, and Washington University at St. Louis. Alumni not pursuing graduate school have been successful in securing positions in engineering firms, teaching, defense corporations, financial institutions, and tech companies.

Apollo Mian, Ph.D. Faculty Feature

Over the past 20 years, Professor Apollo Mian has helped countless students fill their knowledge gaps, allowing them to reach their full potential. His desire to help students who struggle is motivated by his own life’s experience where a compassionate seventh-grade teacher made all the difference in the world. Many of his students have gone on to complete graduate degrees in Physics and Engineering from prestigious universities and now have distinguished careers in the field.

Photo of a green McDaniel hat with an M on the front on top of a towel and bright yellow softballs.

Physics professor shares the secret to playing your best game of catch Research in Action

A gentle throw is all you need during a game of catch, but what’s the best angle to get that perfect pitch? Jeff Marx, chair of the Department of Physics, published an answer to this question in the January 2023 issue of The Physics Teacher.

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Dr. Jeffrey Marx

Department Chair