STEM Career Options in Mathematics
You don't need a degree specifically in mathematics to enjoy a math-focused career. Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) careers almost all involve math in some way, usually in the form of calculations and analyzing data. Here, we list just a few of the possible STEM careers that are heavy in mathematics.
|Job Title||Median Salary (2016)*||Job Growth (2014-2024)*|
|Computer and Information Research Scientists||$111,840||11%|
|Aerospace Engineers||$109,650||-2% (decline)|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Career Information for STEM Careers in Mathematics
Computer and Information Research Scientists
Computer and information research scientists specialize in researching and solving complex problems with computing technology. Their work may result in the development of new technology, but often they look to improve current technology by using models and running tests with current software. These scientists must use complex algorithms, calculations and computing languages to solve problems. Their work can be applied to a variety of fields involving computing, including business, science, medicine and more. These professionals usually need a Ph.D., but some government positions only require a bachelor's degree.
Aerospace engineers use complex math calculations, physics and engineering principles to design things like satellites, missiles, spacecraft and more. They oversee the designing, manufacturing and testing of these products, and ensure their quality and safety. They may also need to determine if a product can be made within a particular budget, customer requirements and safety standards. Most of these engineers hold at least a bachelor's degree. Depending on the project that they are working on, some may need to get security clearance.
Statisticians specifically use statistics to analyze and interpret data that is then used to solve real-world problems in various fields, such as healthcare, science or business. These kinds of mathematicians must determine what data is needed, and then design surveys, opinion polls or other experiments to gather the data. They apply various statistical methods to analyze the data and report their findings to their clients or management. Statisticians usually need a master's degree, but some positions may require a Ph.D. or only a bachelor's degree.
Physicists study matter and energy and can specialize in numerous areas, including astrophysics, nuclear physics, medical physics, atomic physics and more. They use very complex math calculations and experiments to try and prove or disprove theories in their field. They may also use math, models and other computer software to analyze data. Physicists often need to apply for grants and other forms of funding, since their experiments involve using high-tech and expensive equipment, such as lasers. Their findings are reported in scientific papers and presentations. These professionals usually need a Ph.D. to conduct research. Some entry-level government jobs only require a bachelor's degree.
Chemists, like physicists, conduct complex experiments, but usually in a laboratory setting. They may use math to calculate and measure various solutions, temperatures and other factors involved in these experiments. Chemists generally study and examine chemical processes and components of products and substances to check for safety and/or to create new products. Their findings are also presented in technical reports to other scientists, clients or the public. They need at least a bachelor's degree, but most hold a master's or Ph.D.
Civil engineers, like aerospace engineers, must combine math, physics and engineering principles as they design and oversee the construction of all kinds of structures. They may work on projects to build bridges, buildings, roads, tunnels and more. Before they even begin designing their project, civil engineers may need to research, investigate and test the area designated for the project to gain insight into potential environmental hazards, construction costs and more. They may also test various materials that will be used on the project for durability and safety. All of their projects must adhere to safety and other government regulations. These professionals need at least a bachelor's degree, and they may be required to hold a license to work with the public.