Got aspirations of becoming an engineer? We believe the best engineers...start in applied physics. Which is why that’s the major we offer for pre-engineers. 

For a quick highlight list on our applied physics program, check out this blog post. But for now, hear from a current student why future engineers should definitely consider Siena College. 

Meet Aurelien Hong, class of ’20. Hailing from France, Aurelien is an applied physics major in the 4/1 master’s program with Clarkson University. 

His dream? To become a mechanical engineer.

In his own words, here are Aurelien’s five reasons to choose Siena by an aspiring engineer.


The partnership created in the engineering program gave me the opportunity to take classes towards my master’s degree ahead of time. Entering the workforce with a higher degree along with specifications in a field is a real advantage. It’s a real investment in personal and professional growth beyond school. The applied physics major really gets you started on the intricacies of engineering, and can be later applied in master classes with real world work.


The physics and engineering interest of many students really sparked and created an opportunity for the department to develop new majors, classes, and curriculums for aspiring engineers. Recently, Siena introduced new classes to encourage learning about engineering. Along with new professors, the successful classes gave a detailed vision of what an engineer can encounter. The applied physics major coincides with physics majors and dives into different types of engineering (mechanical and electrical.) In the future, there will clearly be an even wider range of applied physics topics at Siena to create the next generation of engineers.


In the summer of 2018, a new telescope was installed on Siena’s campus. I personally had the opportunity to work on it with my mentor Dr. Rose Finn. And this was the summer of my freshman year! Being able to work on research with professors, through a wide range of topics, we are able to learn independently and come up with designs, plans, solutions and experiments as a team. As an applied physics student, the opportunity of working on a project with a real-world problem is gold. All professors encourage students to take part in research no matter the year, and even with students from other majors.


There truly is something special about this school. Rooted in Franciscan traditions, the community follows the DORS initiative: Diversity, Optimism, Respect and Service. As a Community Assistant on campus for two years, I can safely say that I have met the best people. It is always nice to see a familiar face on campus while walking around, and that’s what you get at Siena. The community also transcends beyond the campus. Siena has a name for itself in the Capital Region. Siena alumni are close by and continue to carry the traditions of Saints!


New York may have cold winters and hot summers, but every season highlights how beautiful the campus is. Siena is nested with deep greens and open pathways. Walking around campus never gets old, whether late at night, or in the bright of day. The snow sets us off for magical scenes and the radiating sun clears our minds. And from many buildings like the library, comforting views can secure you that extra motivation when needed.

To get on Aurelien’s path to engineering greatness, request information on applied physics today.