Do you enjoy the challenge of searching out patterns and solving puzzles? Mathematics is a multi-faceted subject that emphasizes logic and encourages innovation. The ability to apply mathematical concepts and principles can be useful in virtually any industry. Here are three key reasons to study math:
1. Math can be used to solve real-world problems.
Problem solving is the essence of any career in math. The Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics notes that studying math can prepare you to deal with questions like the following:
- How can transportation providers design their schedules to minimize downtime and reduce maintenance costs?
- Can ethanol realistically replace fossil fuels?
- How might an uncontained epidemic of disease spread throughout the world’s population?
- How do variables like weather and tree type affect the spread of a forest fire?
- How can investments be arranged for minimum risk with maximum reward?
2. Math majors have some of the highest levels of job satisfaction.
A math education can lead to some of the most rewarding and satisfying careers out there. In one study that ranked 200 careers based on job environment, income, outlook, and stress, four of the top 10 jobs were directly related to math: data scientist (#1), statistician (#2), mathematician (#8), and actuary (#10).
3. Math provides a solid foundation for advanced studies in other fields.
Even if you see yourself pursuing a professional career in another field, it could be worth your while to start by studying math. Candidates with an undergraduate degree in math are often looked upon favorably by programs in law, medicine, business, and engineering because math majors tend to have the analytical and problem-solving skills that allow them to excel in those areas. In fact, one study found that, on average, math grads performed better on both the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) and Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) than test takers from 13 other disciplines.