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Rose-Hulman Mathematics  
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Slowly, but slowly, the math site will be migrated to the new official math site.

What can you do with a math degree?

Mathematically Based Careers. College education is a preparation for a life long career. A question that many students interested in mathematics ask is: "I would like to study mathematics, but what can I do with a math degree?" When somebody says "I'm going to be an electrical engineer!", or "I'm going to be a physicist!" we have some idea of what they might do, but who has ever heard of a mathematician, outside of the academic profession. It is not that mathematics doesn't get used every day, but its use is often hidden from view. Complex economic and planning decisions, scientific discoveries that improve our lives, and new technologies and products are often possible only after mathematical or statistical analysis, or computer visualization, simulation, design and implementation based on mathematics. So, often people whose first love is mathematics masquerade as systems analysts, data analysts, operations researchers, engineers, quality control experts, actuaries, statisticians, and financial analysts in business, government and industry. They combine their interest in mathematics with tough real world problems that need talent and creativity to solve. Thus, lots of mathematically based careers exist that math majors will find enjoyable and rewarding. It is just a matter of self-education to find out what they are.

To help find this out this page point to three resources about mathematically based careers.

  • Here is an essay on math careers and how Rose-Hulman prepares a student for them: Mathematics Careers, Rose-Hulman, and You.
  • Our career information page has a list of employers and graduate schools that Rose graduates have work for or attend. The page also has some links to career information pages and summer internship opportunities.
  • Our growing alumni profiles site has specific varied career profiles of some of our our Rose-Hulman graduates as well as companies and graduate schools of our graduates.

The one non-teaching career that everyone seems to know about is the actuarial career. Since it has been some what popular among Rose grads we have an information page on it: actuarial page.

Should I go to grad school? There are two paths that a student may take after graduating. One is to immediately pursue a career in industry or government immediately upon graduation. A second is to seek a graduate or professional degree (not necessarily in mathematics) often pursuing an academic career. Typically positions requiring just a bachelors degree are entry level and often use a math majors analytical and problem solving skills rather than specific mathematics learned. Positions in which require specific mathematics or application of mathematics will usually require an advanced degree. Over the long term career advancement will likely require post graduate education, either in the form of an advanced degree or equivalent education such as actuarial exams. The career information page above has links to information on graduate schools and whether one should go.

This document was last modified: 12/18/2007
Questions and Comments to: mathwebmaster@rose-hulman.edu