Available as major (B.A. and B.S. degrees)
Theoretical or applied? Research or development? Classroom or conference room? Corporate or consultant? There are a lot of questions when you are considering a career in mathematics. We’re here to help you find the answers — and the best career fit for you.
What you learn as a mathematics major —mathematical theory; algorithms; how to use computers to solve problems — opens the door to a career in almost any field for you. Economics, science, engineering, education, to name a few.There are two basic types of mathematics, and you can study both at Olivet. Theoretical mathematics uses mathematical theory, computational techniques, algorithms and computer technology to solve problems. University professors often divide their time between teaching and conducting this type of research.Applied mathematics uses mathematical modeling, computational methods, computer analysis and other tools to identify and solve practical problems. Real-world examples include: helping an airline reduce the cost of engine maintenance; devising a detailed plan for the clinical trial of a new drug; allocating an investment among several financial instruments to meet a risk/reward trade-off.At Olivet, you can:
The B.A. degree program has a liberal arts slant. It is specifically designed for students who want to complete a double major. The B.S. degree program is designed for students who want to major in mathematics, but don’t want to teach at the high school level. Our strong foundation of pure mathematics, combined with the variety of applied mathematics, prepares students to pursue an advanced degree. Graduate teaching fellowships are readily available at major universities for superior math students. It is also ideal for students who want to work in a mathematics profession, such as research and development for a company.Putting knowledge to workMath lab helps you transition from high school to college when you are taking freshman-level courses. Math education majors can get extra job-related experience serving as peer tutors.Math Club is open to all students, but designed particularly for math and math education majors. You will enjoy finding the fun in math with the “Mathematical Magic Show.” Learn the math concepts behind the tricks demonstrated to you by your professors. Then, go home and impress your family and friends. Or use the tricks in your own math lessons for high school students. Be part of the “Pi Day” activities on campus; math murder mystery; and mathematical origami projects. Do one-on-one tutoring with community middle school and high school students. Share social times and make connections with other Olivet students. Two research options are offered by Olivet for mathematics and science students:
Accept the challenge and take the Putnam Exam. Designed to discriminate at the highest level and to identify the best math students in country, this six-hour exam would challenge even professional mathematicians. Just to score points is an accomplishment. For the first time in 2010, two of our students took it and scored points.CareersIf you are strong in:
then a career in mathematics just may be the right one for you.Many math career fields require you to have a master’s or Ph.D. degree. More than 80 percent of mathematicians who are employed by the federal government work for the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) or National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Possible careers include: Mathematical technician, professor, statistician, operations research analyst, consultant, researcher, market researcher, cryptanalystMathematics is part of the Department of Mathematics within the College of Arts and Sciences.
At Olivet, you will learn from professors who care deeply about your professional and personal success.