Your Advice Requested! - Student Interested in an Optical Engineering Career

Hello everyone! I’m hoping some of you would be kind enough to share your own tips and feedback for a student who approached me asking advice on finding the right university optics program.

I was getting this question a lot so I asked the student if I could publish his/her message and make the information available publicly for other students… and also to solicit more feedback.

My full reply, including a video can be found here: []

I’m also asking on LinkedIn. However, I’m telling the student he/she’ll need to check out this fantastic forum, as well. So wherever is easiest to reply, shout it out and I’ll make sure the student sees it.

Here is the original message I received:

Thanks so much for anything you can share!

This is amazing! Happy to share my opinions on finding the right university for your passion.

First, don’t settle for just one of those areas! There is a whole discipline (and in much demand) called optomechanical engineering. Here is a link to a course website with lots of material that you can look at to see if it interests you further:

Unfortunately, this university is the US, so its not immediately applicable, but they do have an online degree. My opinion is that in person is best, so finding a University in Europe is probably right.

Finding a school that offers courses in this area is challenging, and would typically be offered under the Optical Science degree.

My overall opinion is that doing grad school for optical science after having a degree in mechanical engineering is more likely than starting in optics and transitioning to mechanical. @henryquach did exactly this, he can speak to the unique pros/cons of that path. Therefore, I suggest to find a University that you like for your BS in mechanical, and then if you still want to go into the field of optics, either find employment at an optical company or go to grad school for a degree in optical sciences.

Best of luck!

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Awesome, thanks for sharing your advice, @Isaac! I actually was saying something similar in the video but left it out of the written part: “optomechanical engineering is …its own… thing!” haha

Hi Hexa,

I myself went to Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, nowadays called KIT, and I can only recommend it. I did my bachelor in electrical engineering and then mastered in optics. There used to be big focus on technical mechanics but since the school of optics and photonics opened up, they really made a big step and have a very good reputation on optical engineering. Even the first quantum processor came from KIT. Here’s the link, check it out
I also have to say that living in Karlsruhe was really enlightening for me. It’s a very nice city with a good feeling, especially being a student.
I wish you all the best for your academic career to come!


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Hi everyone, I am Hexa in that letter.
Thank you all so much for showing me different path and support! It is so thoughtful.

I will definetly keep my options open, so that I can absorb different types of optical engineering
and to check out those universities you guys have mentioned above!

Wishing everyone a good day!

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