Math Majors Can Count on Bright Future

While it may be an unfortunate staple of pop culture that math majors aren’t the coolest kids on campus, the joke is on everyone else once the diplomas are handed out. According to a study undertaken in 2009 by Les Krantz, author of the Jobs Rated Almanac, the top 3 rated careers in the United States all had foundations in mathematics. Additionally, the top 15 careers on a 2010 list of the highest paying jobs in the U.S. were all math based.

What does this mean for those with bachelor’s degrees in mathematics? In short, the future is theirs for the taking. There are a number of interesting and rewarding careers that require strong skills in mathematics, many of which can prove to be extremely lucrative financially.

People with skills in mathematics remain in high demand

Students who graduate with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics may wish to teach, in which case they can easily find employment at any level from kindergarten to the 12th grade. Math teachers are considered to be in high demand, and many school districts offer salary enhancements to attract people qualified to instruct in areas such as math and science.

Financial Rewards for the Taking
Of course, math majors may want to reap greater financial rewards than teaching grade school affords. Graduates who choose to pursue a career in one of the engineering fields, which require a very strong mathematical skill set, typically earn around $50,000 with nothing more than an undergraduate degree.

Another career available to math majors is actuarial science. Actuaries apply mathematical principles and statistics to the insurance and finance industries to project the expected health and growth of funds and to assess risk. To become an actuary, additional training and testing is required beyond college. However, many find that the financial rewards are well worth the extra work.

Two interesting and emerging fields for math majors are operations research, utilizing math and logic to solve problems and predict outcomes, and cryptography. Cryptography is, in essence, the study of hidden things. Today, cryptographers work to keep digital information, such as that contained in debit or credit cards, secure. Other fields which math majors may find interesting include finance and computer science.

Is Graduate Study in Your Future?
In math-related fields, graduates can increase their earning potential and marketability by obtaining graduate degrees. A great way for candidates to position themselves for greater post-graduate success is to begin working in their industry of choice. This helps set a foundation of real-world experience on which the student can rely for graduate schoolwork. Engineers, for example, may choose to work for a private corporation or state department of transportation before earning a master’s degree, after which they may be eligible for a promotion to project manager.

Ultimately, nearly any field a person with a degree in math decides to enter will likely prove to be worth the hard work and extra effort. People with skills in mathematics remain in high demand, and the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates higher than average growth in most math-related industries. All of this means a bright future for anyone who makes the choice to study math.

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