Hi, I'm a mechanical engineering graduate from India transitioning to Physics by pursuing MS in physics for Fall 18. I gave my PGRE recently and hoping to get a 750+. My other scores are:
GRE: 310, V 152 Q 158
GPA ( translated to 4.0 scale by WES calculator): 3.0/4.0
My undergrad coursework only had Engineering Physics, Thermodynamics, Fluid Mechanics, Heat & mass transfer, Gas Dynamics..etc and I realize they're nothing related to what's taught in physics undergrad. Unlike in the US, we don't have this system of major or minors where we can take electives in other courses( unless of course if you're from one of the Elite Institutes like IIT). Also being from India, it's very difficult to secure an internship in physics, also more difficult if you're from an engineering field. My final project was related to robotics and I've participated in many robotics and coding competitions conducted by IITs, IIsc and won prizes.
Honestly, what do you guys think of my chances of getting an admit for Fall 18? I'm not aiming for any top 100 or 200 universities, most probably to tier 3/4 universities. I'm applying either way because I don't want to regret not applying afterward. My doubt is, how do universities admit people from other branches if they lack the necessary coursework in their undergrad? will it help if I mention in my SOP that my university didn't have a flexible system to choose electives in Physics?
Now in case if I don't get anywhere, I'm hoping to take one more year to tailor my profile closer to physics by searching more thoroughly to get an internship by Emailing around 900 profs ( seriously, how daunting is this? ). Also, note that I graduated in 2016 and had to wait one year for the PGRE which is only given 2 times on Sept and Oct. So I'd be having a gap year of total 2 years. Is that going to be a problem?
Another doubt regarding Internships, My area of interest is actually in QFT but having an engineering background, I doubt I could ever land one in that area. So I was hoping to apply for/asking profs for internships that are closely related to Mechanical engineering so I have better chances now and later shift my research interests. What all areas in Physics has an overlap/closely related to mechanical engineering? Is condensed Matter physics a good option? Any other suggestions?
Thanks in advance!