Elon Musk is a man of many talents and wears many hats. He’s the face of multiple companies such as Tesla, SpaceX and Boring, to name a few. We know he’s a genius and has come up with some pretty innovative ideas and products. But is Elon Musk a scientist?
Yes – Musk received one of his bachelor’s degrees in physics, making him a certified scientist. According to Merriam-Webster, physics is “a science that deals with matter and energy and their interactions”. There is no doubt that Musk deals with matter and energy and their interactions.
In addition to his degree in physics, Elon Musk also has a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics. We can see how he uses this social science in his work as well. While some people have trouble putting one of their degrees to use, it’s no surprise that Musk went further by getting two degrees and putting them to use in his everyday practices.
The Broad Field of Science
Science is a broad field and there are dozens of specialized areas in which one can get a degree in. The first program to offer a bachelor’s degree in science was in 1860 and it was just a broad science. Today people can choose from a variety of fields in areas such a medicine, animal sciences, computer sciences, laboratory sciences, sports medicine and of course Musk’s two, economics and physics.
This is just to name a few, as engineering, anthropology, psychology and others can be added as well. Each of these broader categories, more often than not, can be broken down even further into specialized fields.
Bachelor of Arts vs. Bachelor of Science
Elon Musk has a Bachelor of Arts in Physics and a Bachelor of Science in Economics. Looking at that sentence, it probably appears that we got them mixed up, it would make more sense to have a Bachelor of Science in Physics and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics.
That would make sense, and it is possible for somebody to have a B.A. in Economics and a B.Sc. in Physics. However, these are two of the degrees in which can crossover, so you have the choice of majoring in them in both degrees.
Often the student will take a science major for an arts degree, or vice versa, if they intend to further their education in the degree area. So, in this case, a student may choose to take a science degree in economics as they intend to pursue higher education in science. Whereas someone who majors in economics in an art degree, might just keep it at that, or may pursue advancement on the arts side of things.
Musk, Physics, and Economics
We’ve already looked at the definition of physics, so let’s take a look at the definition of economics, according to Merriam-Webster: “a social science concerned chiefly with description and analysis of the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services”.
Again, we can see that Musk fits the definition for a B.Sc. in Economics.
But Elon Musk isn’t just a scientist on paper. He lives it every day, spending 90 hours a week working, mostly between Tesla and SpaceX. But he’s not in a corner office wasting away hours on the job, or barking orders at a secretary, or even spending all his time with the media.
The majority of Musk’s time at work is spent in the trenches, so to speak. He spends most of his time on design and engineering of different products, some new and some refinements of current products. He’s often seen down on the floor level with the other designers and engineers.
At Tesla, his economics comes through as he’s concerned with the analysis, production, and distribution of the company’s automobiles. But even before it gets to that point, his physics degree comes through as he is dealing with matter and energy, and their interactions.
While the same goes for SpaceX, more of his physics comes into play, after all, it really is rocket science.
Undoubtedly Elon Musk is a scientist. We only looked at the science behind his degrees, never mind the computer science and engineering that he does, which alone could qualify him as a scientist.