Thursday, July 24, 2014
Job Option for Physicists and Other Scientists: Hollywood Movie Making!
Think of the skills scientists, engineers and mathematicians are trained to develop: high-level problem solving, mathematical modeling, careful observation and experimental designs, use of trial and error to troubleshoot experiments and theoretical structures, high-end technology use, innovation and creativity in both hardware and software design, computer programming and computational thinking skills, and so on. These obviously are what is necessary to becoming a productive and contributing STEM professional. But these skills have, over the past two decades, become transferable to many other areas of study and work. Back when I was in graduate school (early to mid-1990s), several graduate students who I knew and received their PhD's in high energy physics, actually left the field and went to Wall Street, where they use Monte Carlo modeling techniques to try and predict the market, both in the near and long-term timeframes. Another student at the time, who stayed in particle physics and is now on faculty at Berkeley, is a consultant for the hit comedy series, "Big Bang Theory." And now, here is an article outlining physics professors who are now working for some of the major Hollywood studios to help improve special effects and the artistic side of movies, using advanced physics theories and simulations, which are making the most realistic computer graphics we have ever seen! So if you have a fancy for hard core science and math and computer applications, along with a love of art and/or movies, there is yet another different type of career that is possible, along with many others in this new technology and information driven age.