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Job Skills Math and Physics: Where to work?

  1. May 6, 2017 #1
    Does anybody have a list of companies that hire mathematicians? Specifically, mathematicians without any financial or statistical background. A list of summer internships would also be appreciated.

    I've checked out USAJOBS and NSA websites. What else is there?

    Relevant information about me:
    I need to settle down into a career, as soon as possible. I have a BS in Physics and an MS in Math. In math, my background is basically discrete math. I have no finance nor statistics background. I can program pretty well, but have had no official training, nor any classes in it. At the moment Data Scientist/Analyst is pretty much a closed door to me.
    Last edited: May 6, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. May 6, 2017 #2


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    Gold Member

    As someone who came from a similar background and currently does engineering / data science work, can vouch that the door for those kinds of gigs should definitely not be closed (e.g. the company I work for almost exclusively hires math and physics undergrads without experience into entry-level analyst positions). Without prior experience it may take some effort to find companies willing to take chances, but they exist.

    Practically some things you can do to help your chances:
    1. Knowing people and having internal referrals helps a lot. If you have anyone in your network that you can leverage, then do it.
    2. If you are interested in data science and engineering positions, then start building a github profile, participating in Kaggle competitions, etc. In the absence of experience these things can show you actually know some stuff and are qualified.
    3. Check out a variety of industries. I work in the gaming industry, where it seems like a lot of companies are willing to take risks and hire unproven talent. Other industries (like finance) might not be so kind. If you only look in one or two industries, you severely limit your options.
  4. May 7, 2017 #3


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    Education Advisor

    To the OP:

    What you need to do is to answer the following questions:

    1. What can you bring to a company or organization that is useful or variable for them to accomplish whatever goals/missions they have, or to help make a company some money?

    2. What skills do you possess that is useful to employers?

    3. What type of job/career do you ultimately want to pursue?

    Once you figure these out, then you can pretty much advice @jgens from above. I would only add that, since you stated that you are pretty good at programming, focus on building on open-source projects which you can post on your github profile to demonstrate your skills. Also, since you state that you do not have a background in statistics, you may want to explore ways to get some experience on this by, say, taking online courses on platforms like Coursera or EdX to bolster your knowledge.
  5. May 9, 2017 #4
    Thank you all for your advice. I can possibly try more effort toward data analyst positions. But, my question is still largely unanswered:

    Does anybody have a (incomplete is fine) list of companies relevant for non-statistical physics/math graduate job seekers?
  6. May 9, 2017 #5


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    Gold Member

    This really sounds like homework you should be doing as a jobseeker, rather than asking the internet. But what does relevant company even mean here? Are you wanting to work in specific industries or do specific kinds of work?

    If by relevant company you mean "willing to hire someone with my background in some quantitative position" then I mean, think of any even moderately large company and I can nearly guarantee they have positions for business/data analysts, data scientists, engineers, etc. and that these positions are almost always filled by people with quantitative degrees. Of course, only having a degree will probably not land you a job anywhere, you have to convince the company that you have something to bring to them and offer as @StatGuy2000 mentioned above.

    Anyway in the gaming industry places like Blizzard, Nintendo, Riot, Valve, etc. are always hiring analysts, data scientists and engineers. Having a technical degree will not land you a job at any of these places (you still have to show them what value you can add), but it does usually mean the door is not closed.
  7. May 9, 2017 #6
    I appreciate your perspective, and candor. I will look more into gaming industries. Yes... I do ask this question for myself, and I have done "my homework". I've been at this for a while. However, it is not bad to gain other perspectives, and I know this information can be helpful for others too, so I will share what I have found so far. I have had no luck with these, myself, but I hope others do. These companies are largely in/near DC. Good luck, other job seekers!

    http://jobs.jobvite.com/careers/rincon-research/jobs?__jvst=Career Site

    (P.S. To answer your first questions, I am simply looking for a steady career somewhere that won't put to waste all the effort I put into education.)
  8. May 11, 2017 #7
  9. May 11, 2017 #8
    I just checked out the link you provided. That really is an excellent source! Thank you for sharing.
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