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Optics Information Sessions for Incoming Undergraduates

Learn about the ways light is used, the optics undergraduate program, and the wider network of optics companies and the field's grand challenges

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View the current status of optics courses

Check our continuously updated listing of course statuses, formats, and delivery methods (online, hybrid, or in-person).

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Educating the next generation of optics leaders

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Studying light's generation, propagation, detection and interaction with matter

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Combining physics, engineering, chemistry and materials science

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Major & Minor

Pursue a degree or take courses in optics or optical engineering.

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Graduate Studies

We emphasize collaboration and collegiality in our master’s and doctoral programs.

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Optics Research

Research includes quantum optics, nanophotonics, optoelectronics, and more.

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Department News

Integrated Photonics Makes Our Electronics More Efficient

September 23, 2020

As electricity travels in wires it generates heat and leads to losses in power. Can you imagine a da ...

In Remembrance of John Kanwisher

June 8, 2020

John Kanwisher passed away on May 7, 2020. He was an alumnus of the Institute, graduating in 1947 af ...

Newman Receives Dottie Welch Award

April 30, 2020

Dustin Newman, undergraduate program manager at the Institute of Optics, is the 2020 recipient of th ...

A strong Rochester showing in 2020 OSA awards

March 18, 2020

The University of Rochester—and the Institute of Optics in particular—are well represent ...

Professor Renninger receives CAREER and RO1 awards

February 4, 2020

William Renninger, assistant professor of optics, has been awarded a prestigious National Science Fo ...

Professor Kruschwitz elected to board of Inter-Society Color Council

January 29, 2020

Jennifer Kruschwitz, assistant professor of optics, has been elected a board member of the Inter-Soc ...

Industrial Associates

The IA Program provides training and informational benefits to participating companies and allows the Institute to learn more about industry needs and concerns. This exchange improves our partners’ ability to use modern optical technology while increasing our ability to educate individuals to assume key roles within their companies.

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Job Openings

View current openings for students/graduates and faculty.

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Summer Courses Online

Registration is now open for the 59th Annual Summer Short Course Series (offered online). See our summer courses page for more information and to register.

Summer courses flyer.

Biomedical engineering graduate student Tom Stoll, right, adjusts a virtual reality head-mounted display on assistant professor Ross Maddox.

Feature Story

New training in AR/VR tech gives Rochester doctoral students an edge

A $1.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation will establish a structured, well-rounded training program for University scholars applying augmented and virtual reality in health, education, design, and other fields.

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76620starting salary

The average starting salary for the Institute of Optics class of 2018 was $76,620.

5percent

Approximately 5 percent of the Institute of Optics class of 2018 went on to participate in programs such as the Fulbright Scholarship.

Career outcomes graph for a major in optics (class of 2018).
Thirty eight percent of the 2018 optics majors report they are working after graduation while sixty three percent are continuing their education.

Want more information about the Institute of Optics? Contact us.