Math scholarships may be the great equalizer for the United States as it tries to catch up with the rest of the developed world in math testing. Of course, math scholarships or not, America will always have the advantage over countries like India and China because America can import or export manpower as it sees fit.
Right now, though, math scholarships are plentiful partially because there just aren’t that many outstanding math minds choosing to go into the field. So the United States looks to India and China—particularly India—for STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) subject prodigies.
The way things are going with math in the United States the recipients of math scholarships could soon be as rare and revered as rock stars. In fact, studies show that mathematicians are already the most satisfied professionals in the work place. Who needs groupies when you have a protractor and a calculator?
Math scholarships may indeed be one of the last true merit scholarships. Nobody is giving you math scholarships based solely on your ethnicity or gender—though, if those things favor you, there is a place for you as underrepresented in the field.
Math scholarships can certainly prepare a student for life in the outside world. Let’s say a math major wants to go to graduate school. Math majors consistently score higher than any other major on graduate school entrance exams. Those admissions officers at graduate schools also look favorably on math majors for their demonstrated problem-solving ability.
As the STEM subject shortage continues to be a problem there will be even more of an emphasis on finding qualified potential math majors and getting them enrolled in college on math scholarships. Unfortunately the problem has been getting them to stay there and keep their major something math-related.
Math majors have the same freedom of choice as those studying other disciplines. As fewer math majors stick it out through graduation, there will be more incentive to offer even more generous scholarship packages to those studying math. If you fall into this category, well, it’s a good time to be a math major.
Why have math majors become so popular? Part of it is supply and demand as detailed earlier. But there’s more to it than that.
The mathematician types can help us digest this body of mathematical knowledge that is speeding forward faster than it ever has before. Not only that, but they have these problem-solving, analytical abilities so valued in today’s fast-paced work environment.
And did you know that math majors have one of the highest starting salaries of any major? It’s true and this may account, in part, for why they have such a high job satisfaction ranking.
One of the more prestigious math scholarship programs is sponsored by Intel. A total of $1.25 million is awarded to forty science and math students. Those forty who compete in the finals are chosen from a field of almost two thousand.