The first Ph.D. in physics from Rice was awarded in 1920, as the second doctorate earned at the university. Since then, the Physics and Astronomy graduate program has grown to an enrollment of about 110, with 15 to 20 students arriving each year. Recent graduates hold positions in academic institutions, national laboratories, industrial laboratories, and entrepreneurial enterprises.
The department now offers graduate programs for a wide range of interests. Research facilities and thesis supervision are available for Ph.D. students in astronomy and astrophysics, atomic, molecular and optical physics, biophysics, condensed matter physics, nuclear and particle physics, and space plasma and solar physics.
We encourage current students and applicants to also apply for graduate fellowships from various external agencies, which can increase the resources available to you during your graduate studies and help you in various ways throughout your career. Links to some opportunities are http://ofur.rice.edu/feed/fellowships/database.aspx and http://diversity.rice.edu/grad_r_and_r.html.
Resources describing the Graduate Program in Physics and Astronomy are found in the links to the left, especially the Graduate Student Handbook. If you cannot find the answers to your questions here, please do not hesitate to contact the graduate program coordinator, Ms. Rosa Almendarez, the Chair of the Graduate Program Committee (Prof. Han Pu), or the Associate Chair of the department (Prof. Stan Dodds). For current students, faculty are specifically assigned as graduate student advisors to answer academic questions. The department ombudsman is Prof. David Alexander.
Note to International Applicants: Individual requests for application status cannot be answered. As support materials are received, they are matched with the respective on-line application.