5 Growing Careers for Math Majors

by Robinson, Marcia Tuesday, February 21, 2012
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The Bureau of Labor Statistics is forecasting plenty of jobs in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) occupations. Sometimes college students do not consider a STEM major because they don't know what types of professions or careers they can pursue. Math is definitely one of those majors that college students do not readily see the application of the major in a career unless it is teaching, accounting and maybe engineering. Those are all good options, but what about some of the less known careers for Math majors.

Actuaries are hired to analyze statistical data, such as mortality, accident, sickness, disability, and retirement rates. They then construct probability tables to predict risk and liability for payment of future benefits. Actuaries work for the government, insurance companies, banks and in risk management departments of big companies. Fifty two percent of actuaries have a Bachelor's degree. The others have Master's or Doctoral degrees. Median hourly wage in 2010 was $42.14.

Statisticians develop or apply mathematical or statistical theory and methods to collect, organize, interpret, and summarize numerical data to provide usable information. Many statisticians specialize in fields like bio-statistics, agricultural statistics, business statistics, or economic statistics. Thirty percent of statisticians have a bachelor's degree and thirty three percent have master's degree. Median hourly wage in 2010 was $35.02.

Cost Estimators are the professionals who prepare cost estimates for manufacturing, construction projects, or services to help managers to determine price of product or service. Cost estimators may have a specialization based on the service performed or type of product being manufactured. Twenty five percent of cost estimators have an associate degree or less. The rest have bachelors degrees. This occupation is classified as an occupation with a bright outlook, where the number of job openings is expected to grow faster than average. Median hourly wage in 2010 was $27.82.

Operations Research Analysts develop formulas and apply mathematical modeling and other methods to develop and interpret information that assists managers to make decisions and develop policies. Most of these positions will require graduate education and many require years of professional experience. Many of these professionals have strong education and training in Mathematics and Computer Science. Median hourly wage in 2010 was $34.12.