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  1. #1
    Registered User ConnorSkyggen's Avatar
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    Are (pure) math degrees actually pretty useless? (srs)

    I'm a senior in college with about a 3.65 GPA with a major in pure math and minor in econ. A lot of people say math degrees are useful because people always need people with math skills, but besides the standard calculus claases everyone has to take (which are a joke), I can't imagine any other math courses I've taken apply well to any field one can get a job. For example, topics like abstract algebra, linear algebra, and topology don't seem all that useful in the real world. So I don't know what people mean by actual "math skills". If they mean arithmetic, well, I've always had strong arithmetic skills before college....

    I just think that people with math degrees are no better than the people with physics, engineering degrees in terms of math skills. All fields teach you how to think logically in their different ways, but the difference is that you apply these skills in the fields of physics and engineering types. IN math, it's all abstract and theoretical, so you don't get to apply it to anything useful.

    As of now, I can only think of a few occupations where math degrees are specifically desired. One is teaching, which isn't for me, that would be epic fail for everyone. And actuarial science, which was a path I got on for a bit but decided it wasn't for me.

    When I hear people talk about useless majors, I never hear math among that group. When I heard people talk about the best majors to go for, I don't really hear math too much in that group. So here are my questions -

    - is math an overrated degree to have?

    - What actually can be done with a math degree that would make me a better candidate for jobs compared to the people with econ degrees, history degrees, psych degrees, etc?

    I really have no idea what I'm going to do after I graduate. I know my school has a good rep for employment rates, but if I have trouble finding a job, I'll really start to regret that I majored in math.
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  2. #2
    Chief Executive Gangsta Dave P's Avatar
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    You're going to have a hard time finding a job regardless of what you majored in.
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  3. #3
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    actuary, teacher, can't think of any more jobs.....just major in finance/econ....you can still get all the jobs you would as a math major, but there would be a whole lot more options.
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    my friends majoring in math..he plans to teach math in high school when he finishes. Why dont you like teaching math? why did u major in it the first place ?
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    Why did you major in math then lol?
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    Originally Posted by jmah View Post
    my friends majoring in math..he plans to teach math in high school when he finishes. Why dont you like teaching math? why did u major in it the first place ?
    actuary pays well
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  8. #8
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    Originally Posted by Dave P View Post
    You're going to have a hard time finding a job regardless of what you majored in.
    not true
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  9. #9
    making cornbread K11's Avatar
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    you could do quantitative finance, modeling and all that sht. i know a phd def helps with that, but they make bank and are in demand
    The only thing worse than having a bad plan, is having no plan.

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  10. #10
    ʇıɥs shiznut123's Avatar
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    There are jobs in the Finance field that love math majors. I have seen plenty of job listings that say Math majors are welcome to apply.

    My friend graduated w/ a Math major and he works alongside my brother (electrical engineering/computer science major) at Electronic Arts doing database stuff/programming. So no, Math degrees are not useless.
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  11. #11
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    Originally Posted by K11 View Post
    you could do quantitative finance, modeling and all that sht. i know a phd def helps with that, but they make bank and are in demand
    ya brah.

    you can easily get a quant job in various industries.

    banks, insurance companies, big tech companies...all need quant guys.

    most are willing to train new grads too.
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  12. #12
    Registered User ukero's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by blananana4 View Post
    pussyshredder?
    this
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  13. #13
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    Math degrees are an EXCELLENT degree.

    Jobs that I know hire math degree holders:
    Engineering
    Investment Banking
    Private Equity

    All big money jobs.
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  14. #14
    I wanna compete! Shells88's Avatar
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    OP my brother has a PhD in Mathematics. He decided to become a youth pastor after teaching for awhile. Ill ask him after the OSU (Yes, OSU grad..) game if he has any input or advice that can help u out.
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  15. #15
    Banned Money25's Avatar
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    Be a freelance tutor and charge like 25$/hr
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    could always go to grad school in an area other than math. Like half my grad school class is math majors lol.
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  17. #17
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    Not looking too bad. These are median salaries too.

    http://www.payscale.com/research/US/...ematics/Salary

    http://www.payscale.com/research/US/...ematics/Salary


    Nobody is really good at math and everyone hates it so there's gotta be good jobs out there for people bat**** crazy enough to actually major in math.
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    I personally think if you're going to get a math degree. You gotta one of those people that are GIFTED and incredible in math. You can become a cryptogorapher/pattern analyzer etc..
    But if people are "decent" in math and just goof around during the years it won't really get them anywhere.
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    Originally Posted by DangerDan View Post
    Not looking too bad. These are median salaries too.

    [

    Nobody is really good at math and everyone hates it so there's gotta be good jobs out there for people bat**** crazy enough to actually major in math.
    Yea everyone sucks at math. I'm in nyc and tutoring companies are always hiring for them especially now. There's HS math state exam for High schoolers to graduate, and a whole bunch of kids fail that. U can also teach SAT math or college college and get more $$$
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    Originally Posted by ConnorSkyggen View Post
    For example, topics like abstract algebra, linear algebra, and topology don't seem all that useful in the real world.

    - What actually can be done with a math degree that would make me a better candidate for jobs compared to the people with econ degrees, history degrees, psych degrees, etc?
    Software companies love hiring math majors as software developers. Some software fields use math, most don't, but regardless of the field they love math majors. Linear algebra is one area that could definitely be useful to know. The reason they like math majors is because they're intelligent and usually have a mind for programming. That is, people who are strong and passionate about math usually are competent and interested in programming, as they tend to use the same brain regions even if though they're completely different skills.
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    Actually, I've been told I'm good at explaining things and helping people, but I just can't picture myself lecturing in front of a class (and I have bad board writing)
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    Originally Posted by Dave P View Post
    You're going to have a hard time finding a job regardless of what you majored in.
    This is so wrong I had to dig out my pw and log in from lurking.

    Yeah those Hard Science degrees, no one is giving them jobs, BME, ECE, ME, chem eng, there is no one is those areas getting 60k/year jobs guaranteed before they graduate. You might have a different perspective then me because I'm engineering and "average" students are getting decent job offers before they graduate where I am. Hell if you read anything about the medical field they'd almost suck your dick to get a nurse and it will happen because you'll be in an all female class.

    Math majors can make bank in actuarial science, NSA/CIA code breaking fun stuff, FBI, physics and engineering are applied mathematics so I can imagine there are plenty of places where you can cross over into one with a little bit a work or experience,

    If your comparing this to history, econ, psych, you should be able to come up favorably on your own with the things you already listed. Seriously look at the jobs these degrees offer.

    Verses history: teacher in a place that no one cares about (where is it on standardized testing) econ, a place that has been terrible since the financial sector took a hit because they don't know what they're doing currently this field is craving math majors because every other part can be picked up on the job easily, and lastly a return for your masters or don't go into this field degree.

    Oh and please do yourself a favor and gtfo the misc if you want any good advice.

    Google it yourself, talk to professors who are paid to know something about the field, use school resources on job finding.
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  23. #23
    Registered User ConnorSkyggen's Avatar
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    Well I don't have too much experience with programming other than BS highschool courses. Is it not that hard to learn?
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  24. #24
    Lots of 'em Bad Words's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ConnorSkyggen View Post
    Well I don't have too much experience with programming other than BS highschool courses. Is it not that hard to learn?
    It depends on the person, which is why they like to hire math majors. If you have a math degree, odds are you'll be able to pick up programming quickly and will enjoy it a lot. There's a ton of people in the field who are worthless as programmers even after years of experience, because they just aren't that smart. If you want to give it a try, I would recommend picking up a copy of the book "C++ Primer Plus". Or if you don't want to shell out for a book you might not enjoy, look here - http://stackoverflow.com/questions/1...gramming-books. If you don't know what language to start with, start with C++. It's a popular language that allows you to learn fundamental concepts, and other languages can be picked up quickly.
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  25. #25
    Registered User Polak55's Avatar
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    You people worry too much about money

    Do what you enjoy and you never work a day in your life
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  26. #26
    Registered User purified's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Polak55 View Post
    You people worry too much about money

    Do what you enjoy and you never work a day in your life
    well thats why people goto college so they can get a job that pays well...no matter what your job is there will always be things you dislike doing but you have to...


    money can buy everything including happiness

    id rather have a job that pays 85k a year thats not very fun and bascially have everything i want than a job that i enjoy doing that pays 30k a year and live in a 2 bedroom apartment living on pay check to pay check
    Last edited by purified; 09-12-2009 at 08:16 PM.
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  27. #27
    Registered User ConnorSkyggen's Avatar
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    bump
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  28. #28
    Fcuk You Pay_Me's Avatar
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  29. #29
    wearing dat dere snuggie supreme snuggie's Avatar
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    my tutor graduated from ucla with a math major... he works at some bank office now
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  30. #30
    Registered User LordGinger's Avatar
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    My friend majored in math and physics. She got a job right out of college calculating the projectory of rockets for like 70k a year.
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