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Math PhD decision: Applied Math vs Aerospace Engg.

  1. Apr 13, 2009 #1
    I have Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Aerospace Engineering. I recently got PhD admits from University of Michigan (Aerospace Engineering) and University of Texas at Austin (Computational & Applied Mathematics). I need to make a choice between the both and I hope you guys can help me out.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2009
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 19, 2009 #2
    If you want to stay in the Sunbelt or West Coast, go to UT. It'll also give you more flexibility in finding employment to have both AE and math/comp sci degrees.
  4. Apr 26, 2009 #3
    If you are interested in working in the aerospace industry, I think one would be as good as the other. Do the one that would be more interesting to you.
  5. May 10, 2009 #4
    You went to the University of Michigan for Aerospace Engineering, which is top 3 in the subject. If you enjoyed your time there, I would definitely recommend staying. Aerospace is supposed to see a 10% increase in jobs over the next 10 years as well. At any rate, that is the route that I'm taking. UofM is amazing for Aero.
  6. Jul 19, 2010 #5
    really? I would think that employers in the aerospace/defense industry would much rather have an AE than an Applied math guy. I don't know what the applied math person could do other than systems engineering, trade analysis, software engineering, etc
  7. Jul 19, 2010 #6
    This choice is entirely up to you. If I were you, I'd go with the aerospace Ph.D. But then again, I'm an aerospace major myself, and aerospace is all I would ever want to do (except possibly nuclear). It's really all about what you want in life, and what kind of job you want to get, and what you find most interesting.
  8. Jul 20, 2010 #7
    There are misconceptions like this that apply to almost every job available in industry. Whilst I myself can't speak directly for aerospace engineering, the thing that students often fail to realize is that to someone hiring for industry, the most important thing are the skills that one has learned. For the aero/applied math dilemma, I imagine that it would depend on what you'd done in aero. Applied math would bring a lot of valuable skills, that could be applied in a way that you understand to engineering. If you're an expert in some particular type of math or modelling, you might actually be able to educate your employer on how that could be useful for their purposes. On top of this, you'll clearly be comfortable with math and modelling.
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