Thinking of Grad School?
There are two ways to pursue grad School, either the PhD, or a Masters.
Masters: Generally two year programs. And recently there have
been several more focused programs, in a variety of topics of increasing
importance. These include: bioinformatics, quantitative finance,
atmospherics, computational and applied mathematics. Of course
these courses of studies tend to be quite computational in nature. Be sure
to highlight your computing skills.
Georgia Tech offers programs of interest here: Bioinformatics, andquantitative
A starting point is a site hosted by the Sloan Foundation,
Sciencemasters.com They have a list of programs they
have sponsored, as well as those that they
have not. This site is not wholly inclusive!
If you have more suggestions for links, let me know.
Ph.D. Generally a five year program. With the increased homeland
security concerns, there is a strong interest in boosting the number of
American PhDs. Currently, there are about 1000 Math PhDs/year, with
just about 50% being American.
Each year, the American Mathematical Society publishes an extensive survey
of the profession. It includes employment information on the the
new PhDs. (5% unemployment for the 2001 new PhDs) as well as salary
information. Read the February
2002 report to see how it relates to your interests in math.
Here are the highlights from the report
The unemployment rate is 3.7%, up from 3.3 the previous year.
The number of new PhDs has dropped 10% over the last four years, due
almost entirely to a drop in non--US citizen PhDs. (I would expect this trend
Of 919 new PhDs, 818 were employed in the US, and 574 have academic
employment. 274, or 30% of those employed, work in goverment or industry.
The percentage of women new PhDs is 31.2%, which is high. This percentage
seems to be trending higher.
Median salaries for new PhDs taking academic positions was for 9-10 months
$41,300 for females and $43,000 for males.
Doing math research is quite hard. The insights that lead to
substantial advances are won only by very hard effort. At the same
time, if struggling with math is what you love to do, and you get paid
to do it, life is pretty darn good. Mathematical research remains
vital, and is central to a great many of the coming technological advances.
So collectively we will need people with these sorts of skills. There
is a future in it.
Still not sure? And still going to apply for grad school?
Go ahead and pursue the PhD. That is where most of the money
and the options are.