Auburn Family

It All Adds Up in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics

Many students come to dread math. But for some students, math will lead to incredibly successful careers. If you are have a passion for numbers, then the Department of Mathematics and Statistics has a major for you.


The Department of Mathematics and Statistics is part of the College of Science and Mathematics. It has more than 50 professors representing diverse areas of pure mathematics, applied mathematics and statistics. Many faculty members have obtained international recognition for their research.

The department offers degree programs in Mathematics, Applied Mathematics, Applied Discrete Mathematics and Actuarial Sciences, as well as minors in Mathematics and Statistics. Majors acquire a firm foundation in mathematics preparing them for further study or for careers in mathematics or statistics and related fields.

The curricula are designed to give students a basic background in mathematics and the fundamentals of computer science as well as intensive course work in applied discrete mathematics. Degree includes strong interdisciplinary requirements in related fields of application, such as computer science, industrial engineering, electrical engineering and management information systems.

The department’s Actuarial Science degree plan prepares students for careers associated with the insurance industry as well as work in the broader financial services sector, including commercial and investment banking, and retirement funds.

“Actuarial positions involve risk assessment,” said Morgan Mullen, junior in Applied Mathematics with a specification in Actuarial Science. “Most actuaries usually work with insurance agencies in determining how risky it is to provide a person with insurance. Essentially like Ben Stiller’s character in ‘Along Came Polly.’”

Two faculty members in the mathematics and statistics department hold the Associate of the Society of Actuaries designation and their group has been successful in placing students in actuarial positions.

“It is pretty easy to get a job with an actuarial degree,” said Mullen. “It’s a good career to be in, especially in this economic climate. After graduate school, I hope to get a job in the private sector.”

Auburn University also formed a partnership with the African University of Science and Technology (AUST) in the fall of 2008. AUST is a private, pan-African, coeducational, research university located in Abuja, Nigeria. The partnership allows students from both schools to participate in educational and research activities such as faculty and student exchange, joint research programs, special short-term academic programs and organization of international conferences and workshops.

AUST students are on a five-year PhD program. AUST students participating in the AU-AUST collaborative program visit AU twice during their PhD period. After completing this first year at AUST, students spend the second and fourth years of their studies at Auburn taking advanced courses and discussing dissertation topics with supervisors.

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