Want a Great Job – Study Maths

It’s often something that is levelled at Mathematics for those considering studying, what sort of job can I get?  There is perhaps an idea that mathematics is associated with a very narrow job range or academia, however the reality couldn’t be further from the truth.

The reality is that a maths degree opens the door to some of the most interesting and best paid jobs available.  A recent survey by Careercast has perfectly illustrated this with maths related jobs appearing heavily in it’s top ten.  People with maths skills have access to a host of well paid career opportunities and each year the possibilities seem to increase possibly due to the shortage of skilled mathematicians.

Here’s a quick look at some of the top jobs in the survey:

  • Actuary – studying and evaluating the probability of future events,  including in insurance and scientific industries.
  • Audiologist – Involves the diagnosis and treatment of hearing problems.
  • Mathematician – experts who apply mathematical theories and formulas are in demand in all sorts of industries.
  • Statisticians – a specialised mathematician who deals in analysing statistical data in things like surveys and experiments.
  • Biomedical Engineer – analysing and designing solutions in biology and medicine, specifically looking at improving patient care.
  • Data Scientist – new entry brought into existence by ‘big data’. Combines IT, Statistics and other disciplines to analyse trends in data.
  • Dental hygienist –  profession involves cleaning teeth, examining patients.
  • Software engineer – research, design and create software and hardware systems for a variety of purposes across a whole range of industries.

It’s obvious to see a pattern, both mathematics and health care feature heavily across these highly rated jobs.   The above roles are of course fairly generic and there are many thousands of variants of many of them working in all sorts of different industries.  If you look at further down the list, the computer industry is one that is also featured very heavily.  It’s interesting that many people with maths and computer backgrounds are nowadays often self employed too, in fact some of the world’s biggest companies started like this.  There are some interesting documentaries about these subjects on both American and UK TV who often broadcast shows focussed on jobs and entrepreneurs – check out these tools to use proxies to access these TV stations like the BBC.

It perfectly illustrates how you should not get caught up in common perceptions of specific subjects.  At first it would seem that maths is linked to quite a narrow cross section of career possibilities where as in reality it’s completely the opposite.  In fact qualifications in maths often open many doors without closing some, for example many IT and computer companies prefer to train maths graduates from scratch rather than take people with a programming or IT background.

James Hevin