Mathematics is one of the oldest sciences known to man. Mathematicians create new mathematical theories and techniques to solve practical problems in business, government, engineering, operations research, computer and information science actuarial science, and the physical, biological, and social sciences. Because of the diversity of today's mathematics, many different companies employ mathematicians. Companies such as: Allstate Insurance Company, Aluminum Company of America, Ames Laboratory, AT&T, BellSouth Services Company, Blue Cross & Blue Shield, The Boeing Company, Burlington Industries, Inc., Chevron Corporation, Chrysler Corporation, Entergy, Exxon Production Research Company, Frito-Lay,\PepsiCo. Inc., General Electric, GTE Corporation, Honeywell Inc., Louisiana State Insurance Commission, Motorola Inc., Polaroid Corporation, Price Waterhouse, Management Advisory Services Department, Snap on Tools Corporation, Texaco, 3M and The Upjohn Company are just a few of the many companies that have employed mathematicians.
Almost every bureau or branch of the federal government employs mathematicians in some capacity. Mathematicians, statisticians, operations researchers, cryptologists, and actuaries work in the Department of Health and Human Services, the General Accounting Office, the Office of Management and Budget, the Department of Energy, NASA, the National Security Agency, and the Department of Defense. The Department of Defense has been known as a primary Federal employer of mathematicians, employing almost seventy-five percent (75%) of the mathematicians employed by the Federal Government.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported a median annual wage for a mathematician at $99,380 in May 2010. Industries employing the largest numbers of mathematicians in May 2010 were: Scientific research and development services; Federal government (excluding postal service); Management, scientific and technical consulting services; Architectural, engineering, and related services; and Colleges, universities and professional schools (state, local, & private). It has been written that employment of mathematicians is expected to increase by 16 percent from 2010 to 2020.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition, Mathematicians,
on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/ooh/math/mathematicians.htm (visited July 09, 2013).
Mathematicians holding at least a bachelor's degree who meet State certification requirements may become high school teachers. Mathematicians holding a master's degree or PhD may teach and/or conduct research on the college level. Outside of teaching, two of the most challenging careers in mathematics are actuarial science and operations research.
Actuaries are professionals highly trained to evaluate the financial impact of a future risk. They are the architects of the insurance industry. Actuaries analyze relevant statistical data and develop mathematical models to calculate the dollar value associated with a loss or injury in the future.
Operations research is a scientific approach to analyzing problems and making decisions. It uses mathematics and mathematical modeling on computers to forecast the implications of various choices and to pinpoint the best alternatives.
University Professor/Elementary and Secondary Teacher
Some mathematicians devote their careers to training and assisting young mathematicians and others. This is a very rewarding and challenging career. The usefulness of today's technology will soon be depleted and it is up to up and coming mathematicians and scientists to surge forward into the New Millennium. From Kindergarten level to a Ph. D. Degree in Mathematics, each student should be afforded expert training and assistance in his/her quest for excellence.
Want Additional Information?
- Bureau of Labor Statistics
http://www.bls.gov/ooh/math/mathematicians.htm#tab-1 for statistics/information on employment,
training, job outlook, earnings, and related occupations.
- 2010 National Survey of Recent College Graduates (NSRCG)
http://www.nsf.gov/statistics/srvyrecentgrads/#overview for those who have recently obtained bachelor's or
master's degrees in a science, engineering, or health (SEH) field;
- Mathematical Association of Mathematicians (MAA)
http://www.maa.org/careers/profiles.html for profiles covering a wide variety of careers for which a background in
the mathematical sciences is useful;