Two students consult with a professor on measurements being taken on the roof of a MSU building.

Optics & Photonics

In addition to a major of your choice, gain core knowledge and the set of skills necessary to participate in the rapidly growing opportunities in optical science and engineering. 

Optics & Photonics – Minor

In addition to their core plan of study, students in the Optics undergraduate minor program at Montana State take coursework in electrical engineering, physics and optics in order to gain an understanding of the rapidly growing optics and photonics fields. Students in the Physics – Professional Option or Physics – Interdisciplinary Option programs can earn this minor with no additional credits added to their plan of study by carefully selecting physics electives or completing optics-related research for their senior capstone project.




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Spectrum Lab
MSU's Spectrum Lab was established in 1999 to advance the opto-electronic technologies emerging from the Montana State research laboratories and foster their transition to Montana companies while providing enhanced educational opportunities for students.

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Montana's Research Leader
Montana State leverages more than $120 million annually to support pioneering research across our departments, institutes and centers.

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Optics & Photonics Hub
With synergy between Montana State's optics research and Bozeman's many amenities, the city has more than 30 optics companies employing at least 800 high-tech workers.




Career Resources

Within their first year of graduation, more than 96% of Montana State graduates are employed, continuing their education or not seeking employment, and career guidance website Zippia consistently ranks MSU as the #1 school in the state where alumni are most likely to land jobs.

Career Coaching & Professional Skills Studio

Professional career coaches help students with their career exploration, employer networking opportunities and job or internship searches. They also critique resumes and help students practice job interviews. Additionally, the Allen Yarnell Center for Student Success offers free workshops for students to develop the professional communication and collaboration skills that are highly sought after by employers.


Optics & Photonics students at Montana State University go into careers such as:

  • Manufacturing
  • Laboratory Research
  • Optical Engineering
  • Product Development
  • Sales

To explore more career possibilities, the Allen Yarnell Center for Student Success has a variety of tools available , including self-assessment and working with career coaches.