American Physical Society
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Information for Students

Welcome Students!

In this section, find specialized resources for students in Middle School, High School, and College Level sections.

In our Middle School section, you can:

  • Get advice on coursework which will help prepare you to pursue careers in Physics fields.
  • Find suggested readings to find out more about the lives of famous Physicists.
  • Discover resources to help you to explore Physics, at home and in the classroom.

In our High School section, you can:

  • Get advice on coursework and activities which will help prepare you to pursue careers in Physics fields.
  • Learn about fun ways to explore science while connecting with other students.
  • Find information about Federal Student Aid and Physics programs, scholarships, and clubs.

In our College section, you can:

  • Get advice on how to tailor your undergraduate Physics program to prepare you for specific fields.
  • Find information about how to build skills and make connections through student organizations and job shadowing.
  • Discover resources for helping you decide on a graduate school, or finding and landing that perfect job if you are interested in entering the workforce upon graduation.
Amanda Joy McDonald

Amanda Joy McDonald - Actuary

Joy earned a BS in physics from Southern Nazarene University,  Bethany,  OK,  in 1989,  where she published a paper in the Journal of Undergraduate Research in Physics. She was elected into Sigma Pi Sigma in the SNU chapter when it was chartered in
1994. Joy began her career as an actuary before graduation by taking the first actuarial exam in
November 1988.

Then life intervened. She took several years off from Fellowship studies to raise children while still working as an actuary for American Fidelity. In 2006,  realizing she was approaching the twentieth anniversary of starting the Fellows program,  Joy set a goal to achieve the FSA before that anniversary. That goal was realized a few months early when Joy completed the final requirement in July 2008. Joy concentrated her actuarial studies in Group and Health Insurance.

Joy has remained a highly visible "hidden physicist" throughout her actuarial career. She presents talks to university math clubs and chapters of the Society of Physics Students,  describing how a background in Physics prepares one well for actuarial studies.