Careers after grad school Pt. 1

I live in the United States (please don’t stalk me) and I stress a lot about the job market for mathematicians. As of 2017, it’s pretty rough out here. When I get stressed I like to look up statistics to scare myself. I don’t know why I do this. This is not a good habit.

But the American Math Society does an annual survey of PhD graduates each year. You can learn which areas are the most popular, which areas get jobs, who earns the most money, etc.

Here’s a link to the AMS’s page: Data on the Profession

Of course, the survey I’m specifically referring to is the AMS Annual Survey (please see here)


Here are some of my takeaways:

In the year 2015

  • The median woman postdoc earns more than the median male post doc
  • The most popular area of theoretical math is Algebra/Number Theory
    • Of course Statistics is by far the most popular areas to get a PhD in among all of math
  • The median salary for a PhD who goes into industry is about $105,000
  • The median salary for a postdoc is closer to $60,000

Additionally, I’d like to include a link to the blog post of Brian Mann – a former PhD student at the University of Utah who decided to pursue an industry job after graduating and wrote about the reasons for his decisions.

Why I Left Academic Mathematics

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