A math major can provide the ideal basis for many careers. Mathematics offers a strong background in skills many businesses seek when recruiting new employees. It can be especially marketable when complemented by a minor in an area of interest. An education in mathematics teaches students to think critically and creatively, solve problems, organize information, handle technical language and notation, and to speak and write precisely.

While some math majors intend to pursue teaching or graduate studies in math, applied math, statistics, physics or engineering, these are not the only options available to them. Math majors are welcomed in professional schools to study business, law or medicine. Math is especially good preparation for law school because of its emphasis on critical thinking and precision.

Computer scientists work as theorists, researchers, or inventors. They apply their higher level of theoretical expertise and innovation to complex problems and the creation or application of new technology. Computer scientists employed by academic institutions work in areas such as complexity theory, hardware, and programming-language design. Computer scientists who work in the private industry are involved in areas such as applying theory, developing specialized languages or information technologies, or designing programming tools, knowledge-based systems, or even computer games.

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Computer science is the study of computers and their applications. It is an exciting field attracting all sorts of people interested in the roles that computers play in society. In particular, the program at NMU is attracting people from all spheres of society, including more women than ever before. A degree in Computer Science can allow you to work in a large computing firm (like Microsoft or Intel) or in a computer division of a smaller company. You can choose to work designing the next generation of computers themselves, or you can use your computer expertise to work in a seemingly unrelated field of interest to you.

The Computer Science major will train you in computer programming (including graphics programming and Internet programming), computer theory, and even some computer hardware design. Many of our graduates go on to get advanced degrees in Computer Science and many use their degree to open the door to a fascinating career. Our majors have the opportunity to compete in regional programming contests, to at-tend undergraduate research conferences, to participate in our student-oriented computing clubs, to earn substantial income and invaluable experience on engineering internships at leading corporations, and even (for our most prepared and dedicated students) to work on original research projects!

Your education at NMU will be well-utilized when you enter the job market or continue your education in graduate school. Communication skills are absolutely necessary in any career field today, so be sure to take advantage of opportunities here to develop strong speaking and writing skills. More-over, your research skills, critical thinking and problem-solving ability, and general analysis skills will be sharpened through your mathematics and computer science courses, and also through various elective course offerings.

You should begin the resume-building process as soon as you can. The Academic and Career Advisement Center can assist you with career planning, while Career Services will help you fine tune your resume and look for jobs related to your field. In the meantime, the more hands-on experience you have, the better the chances are that you will find a job. Becoming involved in a professional related internship is a way to develop your professional skills and gain experience. (We regularly place students in local and national internships at major technology centers, including Intel Corporation, Amazon.com, and NASA.) Your academic course work is important as well, so be sure to maintain a high grade point average.

It is important to make "contacts" if you are interested in securing governmental employment.

Some of these positions may require special certification. A minor or second major in business may be helpful, as would obtaining an internship.

Remember to take any necessary exams early; it can take six weeks for results to be sent to the schools to which you applied.

 

Additional Resources

For hundreds of different types of jobs in areas such as computer science, network computing, mathematics, and mathematics education, the Occupational Outlook Handbook tells you the training and education needs, earnings, expected job prospects, what workers do on the job, and working conditions.

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Mathematics is one of the oldest and most fundamental sciences. Mathematicians use theory, computational techniques, algorithms, and the latest computer technology to solve economic, scientific, engineering, financial, and business problems.

Mathematical skills are in great demand in today's workforce. The government, private industry, engineering, and health and environmental fields, and the academic world all require sophisticated mathematical skills to help solve various problems.

If you do decide to pursue Mathematics as a major, you will gain an educational background that many employers seek in job applicants. Your research skills, critical thinking and problem-solving ability, and general analysis skills will be sharpened through your mathematics and computer science courses, and also through various elective courses.  Moreover, skills and competencies you acquire during your time at NMU will be well-utilized when you enter the job market or continue your education in graduate school. Communication skills are absolutely necessary in any career field today, so be sure to cultivate strong speaking and writing skills. Employers need people who are able to communicate effectively with others.

You should begin the resume-building process as soon as you can. The Academic and Career Advisement Center can assist you with career planning, while Career Services will help you fine tune your resume and look for jobs related to your field. In the meantime, the more hands-on experience you have, the better the chances are that you will find a job. Becoming involved in a professional related internship is a way to develop your professional skills and gain experience. Your academic course work is important as well, so be sure to maintain a high grade point average

A bachelor's degree in mathematics is the minimum education needed for prospective mathematicians. In the federal government, entry-level job candidates usually must have a four-year degree with a major in mathematics.

A minor or second major in business or economics may be helpful for some of these fields of interest.

Additional Resources

For hundreds of different types of jobs in areas such as computer sciencenetwork computing,mathematics, and mathematics education, the Occupational Outlook Handbook tells you the training and education needs, earnings, expected job prospects, what workers do on the job, and working conditions.

Northern Michigan University Career Information

Career information with National Organizations

Federal Job Opportunities

Other Internet Resources

The following questions illustrate the type of problems amenable to operations research methodologies:

  • It frequently happens that a telephone call does not take the shortest possible route from caller to receiver. How then is a long-distance call routed from its origin to its destination?

  • In recent years many banks have changed the customer waiting line or queue from individual lines behind each teller to a single, snake line that feeds all tellers. Why is this?

  • How are the cost and duration of warranties on automobiles, parts, and appliances determined? Why is the free warranty set for a limited time only, and why does an extended warranty increase in cost for each year of the guarantee?

  • Why will most insurance companies not insure the life of an infant under a few months of age, but will insure infants over a minimum age at a very low premium?

  • How does a network of computers operate? A program on one computer can be executed on another hundreds or thousands of miles away. How is the decision made as to which computer is to handle which job?

SOURCE: Career in Operations Research

Career Opportunities: ORMS Today

A Career without Boundaries

What's an Actuary?

Actuaries put a price tag on future risks. Their work requires both analytical and business skills. (See also What Do Actuaries Do?)

Where Are the Opportunities?

Actuaries are employed in the insurance industry, government, consulting firms, banks and investment firms, and large corporations. 

How Do I Get Started?

Typically, actuarial trainees (those who have yet to pass all of the qualifying exams administered byThe Societies Of Actuaries) major in mathematics, actuarial science, statistics, computer science, or pass a couple of actuarial exams while still in school. The first two exams cover undergraduate subjects in calculus and linear algebra and probability and statistics.

What Are the Opportunities in Actuarial Science at NMU?

Northern is one of fewer than 200 Canadian and U.S. schools listed by The Society Of Actuaries as offering a pre-actuarial curriculum. The Mathematics & Computer Science Department offers courses covering the content of Exams 100, 110, 120, 130 and 135. Each of the aforementioned exams is offered two or three times a year at many testing sites around the country. NMU is one such national testing site.

Who Should I Contact for More Information?

The contact person for The Society Of Actuaries at NMU is:

Dr. Linda B. Lawton
Mathematics & Computer Science Department
Northern Michigan University 
Marquette, MI 49855 
Office phone: 227-2020

What Do Actuaries Do?

While actuaries work on all sorts of projects in diverse business environments, they have one thing in common: They use quantitative skills to analyze and plan for future financial situations.

Using these skills, actuaries may be involved in projects as varied as:

  • Placing a price on a company about to merge with another business.

  • Estimating the impact of seat-belt laws in automobile losses and determining appropriate rate discounts.

  • Projecting Social Security benefits so money can be collected to pay workers planning to retire in 20 years.

  • Determining why malpractice insurance costs for doctors are skyrocketing.

  • Projecting what the AIDS epidemic will cost life and health insurance companies in five, ten and twenty years.

  • Determining the price for a liability policy.

  • Collecting and investing enough money so that an insurance company can pay claims.

  • Designing a new retirement program for a company.

  • Calculating the price to charge for insuring a satellite launch.

  • Estimating the benefit costs for a labor union contract.

  • Answering questions like "What risks are insurable", and "How much and where should companies invest money?"

  • Estimating the cost of a major earthquake on the West Cost.

 

SOURCE: Picture yourself making a terrific choice! The Actuarial Profession, Society of Actuaries