Mathematical Digest

Short Summaries of Articles about Mathematics
in the Popular Press

"International Career Centre Special Report", by Potter Wickware, Nature, 9 August 2001.

"Mathematicians are in short supply in the United States. Wickware examines how the federal agencies plan to boost the numbers". The article cites American Mathematical Society surveys that track the number of graduate students in mathematics who are U.S. citizens (75% in the 1970s and fewer than half today). Jim Maxwell, AMS Director of Meetings and Professional Programs, believes that current job prospects are good for U.S. mathematicians. The National Security Agency is one of the largest employers of mathematicians in the U.S.: it hires about 50 mathematicians a year, about two-thirds of whom are Ph.D.s. The article includes some demographics on unemployment rates and salaries of mathematicians, and reports the perspectives of key figures from the National Security Agency, National Science Foundation, Institute for Mathematics and Its Applications, Institute for Pure and Applied Mathematics, National Institutes of Health, and Mathematical Sciences Research Institute.

--- Annette Emerson