NSE - Nuclear Science & Engineering at MIT

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Interested in Course 22?

One of the most frequently asked questions about Nuclear Science and Engineering is: How much breadth and depth can I expect from an NSE degree?

Nuclear engineering is the ultimate integrated engineering discipline. This is because nuclear systems – whether nuclear fission reactors, fusion reactors, ultrasensitive contraband detectors, or medical imaging systems -- have many different components, all of which need to be understood along with the relationships between them. As a nuclear engineer, you need to be both an expert in your field, plus know enough about other fields (thermodynamics, materials science, mechanical engineering, physics, electronics, programming) that you can hold your own in a variety of other disciplines. For example, the fundamentals of materials science, central to issues of corrosion, fuel performance, and safety in nuclear reactors are the same tools you would apply in solving problems such as the corrosion of oil pipelines, materials compatibility on space vehicles, or optimizing manufacturing processes to minimize human errors and maximize efficiency.

Because Nuclear Science and Engineering is such a broad field, our graduates are uniquely prepared for a large number of widely different careers upon graduation. Recent graduates have taken research and teaching jobs at universities, as well as at power plants and government and industrial labs. But it may surprise you to know that our recent grads are also starting LED lighting companies, working as hedge fund managers at Fidelity and Goldman Sachs, creating interactive science & art displays in Paris, designing new reactors for Bill Gates' latest startup, improving aircraft components at GE, attending medical school, and crafting domestic energy policy on Capitol Hill.

Browse our FAQs to learn more about Nuclear Science and Engineering as a field and at MIT. And explore our Course 22 roadmaps to find the one that's best for you.


We particularly invite freshmen to join UROP research projects in Course 22 (NSE). Most of our projects require no experience or prerequisites. Jump head first into our labs and start your research career today. Find your Nuclear UROP now.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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