In addition to working with the education program to develop sound math teachers, the Defiance College mathematics program focuses on developing analytical reasoning and problem-solving perspective for all of its students. A mathematics major can apply these abilities to virtually any work experience or graduate study in a variety of disciplines.
Students within the mathematics program choose a related course, either physics or microeconomics, as they are inclined. At Defiance, mathematics majors also get to study geographic information systems and apply it to a chosen topic. Many skills are developed and nurtured in mathematics, such as: communicating mathematical ideas in both written and oral form, learning to recognize patterns, analyzing problems to choose the appropriate tool or technique to apply, and an appreciation for the historical development of mathematical perspective.
An internship is an excellent way to stand out from peers. Faculty at Defiance College set up an internship at a student’s request. The process will include determining long-range objectives, finding an area of interest, setting goals, and deciding how well those goals have been met.
Benefits of the Program
Mathematics majors at Defiance College have a unique opportunity to study in informal sessions working directly with the professor. Such student-oriented study quickly forms bonds among classmates that carry throughout the academic experience at Defiance. Students will culminate their studies with a capstone project of their choosing. Some focus on a service project while others explore a topic of their interest in greater depth. Faculty offer students the opportunity to attend events such as the Ohio section of Mathematical Association of America meetings.
Applying Math Around the World
Students can apply their creative thinking and reasoning skills through Defiance College’s innovative McMaster School. As a McMaster scholar, students are enabled to become active world citizens by researching and planning projects that address an issue, then working with faculty to carry out the project in an effort to alleviate human suffering in the world. Types of projects vary depending on personal interests of the student and serve to aid people and communities in need. As math majors tend to be problem-solvers, this opens doors for them to apply their knowledge in a global regard. Some locations visited by McMaster scholars are Belize, Cambodia, Panama, and Tanzania.
Because the study of mathematics influences problem-solving ability, a student could turn any area of interest into a minor. A minor, second major, or concentration of courses in another area of study can indicate how a mathematics student would wish to apply their knowledge. Former students have taken minors or double majors in business, economics, sport management, English, and molecular biology.
After College — What’s Next?
Graduates with a mathematics major have employment opportunities in a wide array of settings. Being a mathematician has been recognized as the best job in the nation based upon environment, employment outcome, income, physical demands, and stress. The versatility of job opportunities is part of what earns it top ranking.
Some students recognize opportunities in part-time employment or projects from other courses which can have job potential. Graduates report a change in their job description after an employer realizes how mathematical thinking can be used. At one point, the percentage of mathematics and statistics majors nationwide accepted to medical school was greater than any other major.
Certain areas, such as business, industry, or engineering, may call for additional schooling at the graduate level.
In Their Own Words
"I knew I had a passion for math when I came to Defiance College. Dr. Stuckey approaches every class with an enthusiasm that allows me to understand and enjoy them. Dr. Stuckey, along with my other math professors, have given me an appreciation for all forms of math. Their eagerness to teach and help me to the best of their abilities has strengthened my desire to become a math teacher!"
--Taylor Haydinger, Senior
"My time as a math student at Defiance College has allowed me to grow as a student
and a person. I made friends with some awesome individuals that I would not have made
without math. Also, the mathematics staff at DC was more helpful than I could have
ever imagined. Their concerning care for us not only as students but student-athletes
and people in general made my four years smooth and enjoyable."
--Travis Schomaeker, 2015 Graduate
"One of the best parts of the math classes is the willingness of students to speak up. Whether they have questions or an answer or an insight, it is easy to share your thoughts. Often one student will share their ideas to help with another one’s difficulty.”