The Chronicle of the Horse
MagazineNewsHorse SportsHorse CareCOTH StoreVoicesThe Chronicle UntackedDirectoriesMarketplaceDates & Results
 
Results 1 to 20 of 20
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul. 17, 2008
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    761

    Default What can you do with a math degree?

    My DD is a junior in high school this year and is beginning to look at colleges. She has decided that she wants to major in math. She enjoys math and has a good aptitude for it. This year she is taking AP Calc BC, and her senior year she is taking Calc 3. (Math is not my forte, so I am proud and amazed!)

    I am looking at possible careers she could pursue, excluding teaching, as I know she is not interested in that. What are some of the jobs one could get out of college with a math degree? Do you need to go on to graduate work and specialize to land a good job?

    Any help or advice is greatly appreciated!
    "Your best can be worn at any length"- Jason Mraz



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr. 1, 2008
    Posts
    4,537

    Default

    NASA, engineering, state/federal government (use it to determine road grades/slopes for runoff etc), actuarial work, studies of population/weather/biology/climate, statistician (tho that might also need a degree in statistics),
    computer science.....



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul. 14, 2006
    Posts
    1,820

    Default

    I would suggest your daughter look into statistics....lots of very practical applications in industries like finance, insurance, medical research (big studies often need statisticians), genetics (HUGE, huge demand for people that understand BOTH biology and math), advertisting & marketing. The New York Times had an article a few years back about job opportunites for those who majored in statistics.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/06/te...tats.html?_r=1

    BES
    Proudly owned by 2 chestnut mares
    Crayola Posse: sea green
    Mighty Rehabbers Clique



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan. 4, 2007
    Location
    TX
    Posts
    40,915

    Default

    I think that, after she is in college and looks around, does some internships in the real world, the opportunities, no matter what she does, will be some you or her can't foresee from where you both are now.

    Good to ask and look around now, but don't be surprised if when she gets there, all changes.
    She may even like teaching, sure as you are now she won't.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar. 1, 2003
    Location
    Happily in Canada
    Posts
    4,865

    Default

    Just what Bluey said! I know 2 women with math degrees; one was a teacher for many years, the other became a lawyer.
    Blugal

    You never know what kind of obsessive compulsive crazy person you are until another person imitates your behaviour at a three-day. --Gry2Yng



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul. 14, 2006
    Posts
    1,820

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluey View Post
    I think that, after she is in college and looks around, does some internships in the real world, the opportunities, no matter what she does, will be some you or her can't foresee from where you both are now.
    Yep, internships are the key, whatever the major. The people who do nothing but follow the "Chinese restaurant menu" course requirements (ie these required courses + at least 3 courses from column A, 2 from column B and a sequence of courses from the options in column C) tend to be unhappy come graduation time....either because they can't find a job or because they find a job and realize they don't really like it.

    Some schools (like my alma mater, Case Western Reserve in Cleveland, OH) even have co-op programs in which the total time to get the bachelors degree is extended by a year but students have the opportunity to do multiple paid internships at major corporations for credit. Some of the co-op assignments are as long as 6 or 7 months....way more experience than a 2 month summer gig. I did not do the program because I knew I was going to grad school, but for people who want to go into industry right after the bachelors, it's a great program.

    http://engineering.case.edu/coop/

    BES
    Proudly owned by 2 chestnut mares
    Crayola Posse: sea green
    Mighty Rehabbers Clique



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep. 5, 2005
    Location
    Mass.
    Posts
    6,634

    Default

    Good at math?? Holy moly. She will be able to take her pick. Recruiters will be coming after her in droves. Any major NYSE company - GE, AT&T, Kraft Foods, any and all banks/financial services companies; Aerospace/defense industries; about 99% of government agencies; FBI/CIA. Maybe she'd like to work overseas - they have a dearth of math majors in other countries as well.
    I realize that I'm generalizing here, but as is often the case when I generalize, I don't care. ~ Dave Barry



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2010
    Posts
    168

    Default

    In Math - statistics is a great way to go. With stats you can go the banking / finance / actuarial way (which is what most people associate with stats), or you can consult for just about any other field. What people tend to forget is that in just about any field there are processes which need statistical analysis. I'm going into Biostatistics, which is super interesting because you get to study just about anything medically related (my MSc was on modelling a disease in horses!).

    If she's interested in this sort of field - she should definitely do some programming too. Bioinformatics is a very interesting field.

    All in all it's a great way to go. It's definitely a field with a lot of job opportunities.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec. 11, 2005
    Location
    Southern California - Hemet
    Posts
    1,691

    Default

    I wouldn't totally discard the idea of teaching. While she may have no desire to teach K-12, she might enjoy it at the college or university level. Even in the midst of the higher education cutbacks crisis here in California, one can still find math-related jobs available.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec. 11, 2006
    Location
    Cheesehead in Loudoun Co, VA
    Posts
    2,474

    Default

    My future DIL is a math major. She decided to become an actuary after watching "Along Came Polly."
    I'm not arguing, I'm just explaining why I'm right
    Violence doesn't end violence. It extends it. Break the cycle.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug. 15, 2008
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    145

    Default

    I was a math major. I am now a teacher, but worked in banking for a few years first. I focused mostly on theoretical mathematics when I was in school. I decided toward the end of my junior year that I did not want to go to graduate school to do math research, so it limited my options as to what I could do with my degree. If she doesn't want to go the PhD route, I would suggest being sure to take a healthy dose of statistics, computer classes, or choose a science to go along with the math. That will make her more marketable.

    The math majors were a surprisingly cool group of kids. Your daughter will love it.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    May. 18, 2011
    Location
    Southern Appalachia
    Posts
    265

    Default

    I am not completely sure about mathematics as a whole.. but the field of statistics is growing like CRAZY. Statisticians are widely needed throughout various fields of research and they are like the new accountant/finance persons in businesses. I am a linguist and we send our research results to statisticians all the time. We couldn't live without them. I would consider looking into colleges that have HUGE math departments that specialize in the various fields of mathematics that has more than "math majors" that merely produce secondary math teachers.
    You only have to let the soft animal of your body / love what it loves
    "Wild Geese" by Mary Oliver



  13. #13
    Join Date
    May. 26, 2011
    Posts
    1,149

    Default

    I have a theoretical math degree and when I graduated I had my pick of jobs from a variety of firms.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb. 3, 2000
    Location
    Nokesville, VA
    Posts
    35,150

    Default

    Math in general will give you access to a wide variety of technical jobs.

    My undergraduate degree is in Mathematical Modelling of Societal Problems (Hampshire College), and I did several internships at IBM research (with the Physics , Math , and General Sciences departments). I went to grad school in Operations Research and Systems Analysis (UNC) (though I am ABD), and I did more internships at IBM, and at Bell Labs (modelling transatlantic phone traffic).

    I have worked at a variety of positions in Network Analysis and Design, Performance Analysis, Artificial Intelligence, Technical Consulting, and Telephony.

    It isn't the specific math skills, it is the ability to think analytically, that makes you valuable for an employer.
    Janet

    chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar. 22, 2012
    Location
    Houston Area, TX
    Posts
    108

    Default

    My boyfriend and one of my best friends have Math degrees, and I have a Math minor. I'm going to law school, my boyfriend is teaching physics in high school (with an eye to eventually becoming a master teacher or professor in a university, I think) and my friend is in sales (he eventually decided he hates math, but too late to change majors).

    The big thing your daughter *needs* to know is that calculus isn't math. Calculus is part of math, but math is more than calculus, so if she samples a higher-level course - algebra or something - and hates it, then there's no shame in changing her major to engineering or physics or whatever, because those majors actually concentrate on stat and calculus way more than math does. The real thing to remember is, she'll probably change majors 2-3 times. Most undergrads do. I changed twice, almost 3 times, but I'm pretty happy with my degree now (not sure about becoming a lawyer . . . ).

    After undergrad, who knows what she'll do? Math is so important, she could seriously do almost anything, as long as she's willing to work smart (not hard, always smart) and learn once she's on the job.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb. 4, 2004
    Posts
    2,631

    Default

    Math gives you a lot of options.
    My major sounds like it was a bit like Janet's--Mathematical Methods in the Social Sciences and had the typical core math courses (calc, linear alg, diff eq) plus stats and modeling.

    I went into IT (like most people who graduated college in 2000!) but also had offers in finance/banking, engineering, etc. Now I work in aviation.

    If you aren't going to grad school I think having a strong stats background and computer programming (probably all math majors have that now--when I was in school it was still optional) are great skills.

    Agree with Janet that for any undergrad degree it is about thinking critically, showing commitment and work ethic, etc. rather than the specific skills taught in classes.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep. 12, 2006
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    3,830

    Default

    Both my brother and father are math majors, and actually do have graduate degrees as well. My father was an actuary. My brother now works on wall street as a trader. Lots you can do!



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Sep. 16, 1999
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    1,641

    Default

    I have a B.S. in Math and Computer Science, and my BFF from college and her hubby both have PhDs in math and teach at universities.

    Unless she wants to go to grad school, I would recommend majoring in applied math in college.
    Good advise here w.r.t. statistics. Good for actuarial science.

    Other options are fields that use a great deal of math. Operations Research (optimization) and economics come to mind. Physics, computer science are others.

    What about engineering?



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul. 17, 2008
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    761

    Default

    Thank you to all who replied, your advice is much appreciated. I had my DD look over this thread, and she seemed interested in statistics or possibly engineering. I guess we will have to let the future unfold.

    The neat thing is while she was on the site she was tooling around and I heard her laughing out loud. When I asked what was up, she said these people are funny! I told her now you know why I am on Coth so much!
    "Your best can be worn at any length"- Jason Mraz



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep. 21, 2005
    Location
    Sacramento, CA
    Posts
    263

    Default

    I majored in math and I work as an actuary. Like others have said, a math degree opens up many doors. But don't be surprised if she changes her mind. I thought for sure I would major in chem, go work for Du Pont, etc etc. Had it all planned out. LOL -- not so much!



Similar Threads

  1. What can I do with a math degree?
    By SaveTheOtters in forum Off Topic
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: Oct. 10, 2011, 05:05 PM
  2. Nutritional Math -Help!
    By Personal Champ in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: Mar. 14, 2011, 02:28 PM
  3. Math geeks, where you at?
    By twotrudoc in forum Off Topic
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: Nov. 2, 2010, 03:26 PM
  4. yoo-hoo?! Math types?
    By pintopiaffe in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: Apr. 17, 2010, 08:54 PM
  5. Am I doing this math right? Liq. Fenben.
    By pintopiaffe in forum Horse Care
    Replies: 13
    Last Post: Mar. 26, 2009, 11:00 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
randomness