Tips for a Great Start
Degree requirements in general mathematics are intentionally kept low to maximize the flexibility of the program. Contact your advisor to talk about your options and read these tips to help you prepare for your career.
Use free electives wisely to get the strongest possible degree.
- If you plan to go to graduate school in mathematics,
- Take additional senior-level mathematics.
- Gain a broad background in mathematics by sampling its disciplines (computational mathematics, applied mathematics, combinatorics, and mathematical statistics).
- Be prepared to choose a specialty. Your breadth of study will help you decide.
- If you plan to join the workforce after graduation,
- Augment your mathematics degree with a marketable minor, such as computer science or business. (Math majors are in demand because of rigorous training in problem solving and critical thinking. However, it is a good idea to have a skill that is immediately applicable to industry.)
Get summer research experience.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) sponsors many Summer Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs. Students participating in such a program work on research projects and typically receive free or greatly discounted room and board, along with a stipend of $2500–$4000.
Michigan Tech faculty members also mentor student recipients of Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF), which also provides a stipend to work on a research project.
Participation in either REU or SURF is a great way to decide if you want to go to graduate school (and it looks great on a graduate school application)!
Do an internship.
If you are planning to enter the workforce upon graduation, you will be much more marketable if you do an internship. For information about internships, contact University Career Services or your advisor.
Join a professional organization.
The premier professional organization for mathematicians are the
- American Mathematical Society (AMS)
Research and teaching, focusing more on research
- Mathematical Association of America (MAA)
Research and teaching, focusing more on college-level teaching
- Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM)
Applied mathematics (including computational) and industrial problems
Michigan Tech students can join all three organizations either free or very inexpensively.