Careers with STEM: Maths 2019

Page 1

TERM 2, 2019


Maths + tennis = data science career inspo! p12 The hidden algorithms that rule the web p8


cool jobs you didn’t know need maths p10






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maths is everywhere

good for your career A knack for numbers will be oose no mat ter what path you ch

t in everyday life. For has always been importan aving solid maths skills online, we want to ng or choosing products ppi sho out ’re we ich en wh example, s account or deciding wh we’re choosing a saving en Wh l. one dea the t or bes nd the bra get to buy this ermarket – is it cheaper ntal me the re’s the product to buy in the sup en our best option. Th out rk wo to e abl be p to d sho ing change in a sold in bulk? – we nee head, like giving or receiv our in s ). sum re? ic mo bas any out o carries cash agility to fig ure ped off (but, to be fair, wh rip g tin get or s not trie ’re s, you run e to make sur ng pace; how many your running or swimmi thing. Or in sports, fig uring out ures we’re ready for any ens ers mb a good grasp of nu l with dea you As al. vit e goals your team needs… of maths has becom tion lica app per cial. dee a cru is rk, to do maths In life and wo and tax returns, the ability ion uat nn era ers sup ess s, rdr age hai loans, mortg ple, shopkeepers, iness, like many tradespeo , If you run your own bus ord-keeping, spreadsheets rec h wit l d to be able to dea or rly, poo s thi and café owners, you nee Doing how to calculate interest. numbers, percentages and thousands of dollars you t cos can e, anc fin es of misunderstanding the rul . ice off trouble with the tax . and potentially get you in is intensely practical, too calculating money, maths ut les abo ang , ces tan dis te Far from being all ura s need to measure acc tor ova ren and g ple fin peo roo Builders, trades lengths of wood, ntities and spacings (for qua ate cul cal as, d are e nee and surfac tists and designers or fencing materials). Ar . shapes, paint, carpeting times expensive) materials me (so ir the ke the most of s ine dic me of s age mathematical skills to ma dos ate carers measure and calcul Medical professionals and p owners, restaurant and sho , efs Ch . ons uti sol g vin -sa life of of s tion tra and concen keep track of quantities calculate stock levels and to d nee ers nag ma ng cateri ths! y need to order. It’s all ma re produce or ingredients the calculators, maths is mo and ers put com by t dan un red de ma g, ng Far from bei lls are needed in bankin the digital age, maths ski , important than ever. In tware and programming sof , teaching, computer law , nce ura re. ins , mo rce ch me mu com ine and so a analysis, science, medic robotics, engineering, dat a bright career in the to ay ew gat a is of maths Put simply, a good grasp daches in your life of l save you no end hea wil now rk wo of bit A . digital age you time and time again. blems comes through for pro ve sol to lity abi r as you stralian Government mith, Astronomer and Au Professor Lisa Harvey-S sador Women in STEM Ambas

A good grasp of maths is a gateway to a bright career in the digital age”





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careers with stem? students he Careers with STEM magazines help we year, discover careers of the future. Each STEM the of each s deliver four magazines acros as Economics disciplines, plus special editions, such of future 75% While rity. rsecu Cybe and , in this issue school highof jobs will require STEM skills, just 16% es. degre STEM in ling graduates in Australia are enrol STEM ine comb will ge emer that Many of the careers + X. Like skills with other areas. We call it STEM at analy tics, look to ways new = eting Mark + s Math solutions. and Maths + Agriculture = environmental and way path er care X + To find your STEM more, visit


rs e b m u n f o e v o l e h t r Fo ars are Australian maths st bject a bad rap, but these su

Maths sometimes gets rd straight about this totally lovable here to set the reco


Why I love maths…


GEORDIE WILLIAMSON “If mathematics is the language of the science, mathematicians are its poets. The deeper one ent ers this world, the more fascinating it bec omes and the more one sees mathematics everywhere.” ~ Professor Geordie William son, Director of the Sydney Ma thematical Research Institute, Univer sity of Sydney

“I love that maths is all about solving puzzles. It’s logical by definition and there’s no ambiguity. It just makes sense and my mind finds comfort in how black and white it is.” ~ Lily Serna, Data Analyst at Atlassian and TV presenter

“Maths gives me the adventure of exploring the unknown, the dream that I can understand the structures of the universe, and the feeling of freedom that comes from the fact that maths has no boundaries or borders.” ~ Professor Nalini Joshi AO, University of Sydney




ny es with which the sympho “Numbers are musical not Rock on! ” of our universe is written. or an, author and Ambassad edi com r, nce ~ Adam Spe ney Syd of sity ver Uni ence, for Mathematics and Sci

“I love mathematics becaus e it’s a sense – just like sigh t, hearing and touch. Maths enables us to perceive and understand pat terns in reality that wou ld be invisible to us otherw ise! ” ~ Eddie Woo, maths teache r and creator of WooTube

Follow your passion for maths in world class facilities Mathematics is the quantitative language of the world. It plays a pivotal role on the growth of science and technology, making it the fastest growing field in STEM disciplines. Our state of the art research and teaching facilities, with internationally-recognised academic staff and ground-breaking research in a variety of topics will enable students to master quantitative problem-solving, mathematical modelling and critical thinking. Come and explore why we are the best place to study maths in Australia. * Find out more * Ranked #1 in Australia for Mathematics (2018 QS World University Rankings)

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Maths skills e r e h w y r e v e e ar P it’s all around – Maths isn’t just for school,


lanning a trip to a faraway place takes a lot of basic maths skills – setting a budget, time and currency conversions, and working out how many movies you can fit into your flight! But the world of travel is also filled with career possibilities that rely on maths. Let’s take a trip to see where the numbers lead us! – Chloe Walker

Book your trip


getaway is to book The first step in planning a dation, and there are your flights and accommo Some even aggregate loads of websites to help. s so you can listings from multiple source durations. compare prices and flight

The job: Weather forecasts are pre pared by meteorologists, who ana lyse data collected from weather stations to pre dict things such as tem peratures, rainfall and hum Hilary Wilson idit y. They can earn an average of $82,00 0* a year. Hilary Wilson is a meteorologist at Austral ian Bureau of Meteorology. She studied a Bachelor of Science, majoring in atmosp here, weather and climate, at the University of Melbourne. Skills require

d: “Computer models are one of the primary tools meteorologist s use to forecast the weathe r,” says Hilary. “These models are underpinned by maths equations that simulate pro cesses in the Ear th’s atmosp here – so to understand how wea ther pat terns develop and evolve, and how this is mo delled by computers, I nee d to have a good understandin g of the maths behind it!”


what’s the weather?

Swimsuit or snowshoes? Be fore you pack your suitcase, you’d bet ter check the weather at your destination .

ith worked on one of The job: Data analyst Ben Smcom , for almost three bined. these websites, HotelsCom experiments to see how years. His role was to run n the site, such as the positio changing tiny elements on gs. kin boo of the number of a photo, could influence website, you’re probably the on d lan you as “As soon Ben. erent experiments,” says involved in four or five diff le version of the website.” “There’s not really one sing results of these Skills required: Analysing the algorithms and ls ical skil experiments requires statist results. rch sea of g orderin are used to determine the u’re “Yo d. min in rs use However, Ben always keeps ember rem to got ’ve you but , looking at numbers all day real people.” these numbers represent


wherever you go!

Prepare for take-off eone on the in-flight movie selection, som the ing ws bro ’re you ile Wh ne arrives safely. screen to make sure everyo ground is also staring at a tralia as a trainee air traf fic

ervices Aus The job: Jessica Walton joined yAirs maths throughout qualified in 2017. Studying

ame full controller in 2015, and bec ugh her aviation training, ree helped her progress thro deg ble dou /law nce scie her ry day in her job. and now she uses maths eve air traf fic control,” eracy skills are a must for Skills required: “Strong num using the ground nts me ess things like make quick ass says Jessica. “I have to do nge over time. cha will ns itio ject how their relative pos pro to raft airc two of ed spe ween aircraft.” to keep a safe distance bet This is one of the tools I use



Fly through the skies

. Not so – they run on maths Think planes run on fuel? ’s ney Syd of y with the Universit Qantas has been working new a p elo Robotics to dev Australian Centre for Field of possible flight paths nds usa tho ts program that plo to find the one that is most using millions of data points by ntas lightened their loads efficient. Also, Virgin and Qa ds, iPa paper manuals with 42 kg per plane by replacing fuel. er, , helping save on things like o design and build

rs wh The job: The aerospace enginee ics g of physics and aerodynam tandin planes need a solid unders raft. airc t cien effi ke ma in order to

ths skills such as geometry

d ma Skills required: Pilots neethe te. cockpit and plan their rou ents in to help them read instrum l efficiency cut costs by improving fue to s way for Airlines looking (think maths around optimisation need people with skills in a. dat h wit se erti exp well as differential equations) as

#5 Start exploring You’ve finally reached you r destination ! Time to start finding your way around. Wh ether you prefer paper or an app, you’re going to nee d a map.


e job: Guidebook publishers such as Lonely Planet use thousands of maps eve ry year. They rely on car tographers to produce the custom maps they nee d. Martin von Wyss, founder of vW Maps, has worked as a car tographer for more than two decades, and say s technology has changed the way maps are made. Some car tographers get into the field through studying geography, spatial science or environmental science, while others move into car tograp hy after working as sur vey ors. The average salary for car tographers is around the $71 ,500* mark. It’s cer tainly one way to explore the world!

Mar tin von Wyss

Skills required: “Map project ion sof tware usually shields you from having to get out your slide rule and doing the hard maths,” says Martin, “but there are thousands of map projections to choose from and you want a good unders tanding of geometry and also the place that you’re mapping. ”

#6 Social it! r friends jealous by Now it’s time to make you me #travel pics to your uploading all those aweso And yep, you guessed Insta and Facebook feeds. nes here, too. it – maths is behind the sce maths is involved in pretty Turn over to discover how ne! much everything you do onli



Maths rules d l r o w l a t i g i d r ou skills digital world, giving you the e th to rt po ss pa ur yo is s Math behind YouTube, podcasts, to work with the technology net everything else on the inter t ou ab t jus d an ia ed m l cia so


hether you’re an algebra enthusiast or a calculus cynic, the idea of ‘maths’ probably conjures up little more than sitting through 6th period maths class. In reality, the internet is powered by algorithms, like a more sophisticated version of the equations you learn in class. So, why don’t we think of maths like that? – Eliza Brockwell

and watches Maths listens premium officer at Pocket Casts – a

f product Russell Ivanovic is the chie ls thanks to complex que audio-enhancement too uni podcast app that boasts s them, then audio files for gaps and trim algorithms. The app scans g. icin not es without you speeds up super-slow voic in pitch so they’ll eone’s voice, it’ll increase som up ed spe “When you a time/pitch s Russell. “By implementing sound like a chipmunk,” say ring the pitch someone’s voice without alte algorithm we can speed up t maths.” hou figuring out that one wit of the actual voice. Good luck ning could lear e spects of what machin Russell’s excited by the pro ognition: rec ge ima in recent developments do in the future. Take the tains a hotdog con it if me tell can immediately “If I show you a picture, you , artificial ago couldn’t,” he says. Now or not. A machine 20 years nds of hotdog pictures through hundreds of thousa intelligence (AI) can trawl accuracy. a hotdog with pretty good and use that data to identify involve thousands can n the simplest sof tware “It may seem simple, but eve dge of maths wle kno state machines. A good of branching conditions and says Russell. m,” the fix ut these, implement and abo son rea to ial ent ess is

Maths entertains us It’s easy to forget how big the internet is. For example; there are 1.8 billion users on YouTube, uploading 300 hours of video content every minute. Sorting through truckloads of spam and irrelevant content to serve up videos you’ll love requires a pretty sophisticated algorithm. Video quality and recommendations are calculated in one fell swoop; YouTube’s algorithm takes a channel’s subscriber count, video views and minutes watched to quantify the quality of that content. Then, YouTube will either recommend that channel’s A+ video content to users, or bury their clickbait deep within the pages of a search. The algorithm is working – reportedly, 70% of YouTube’s viewing time comes from recommended viewing!



Reckon some social advertisements are a little too spot-on to be a coincidence? Put away the tinfoil hat and meet the guy who developed Facebook’s targeted advertising technology:

Pocket Casts:


atchmaking, Read more about this m y/MatchSave t.l bi : m th ri go al g in av es lif

Maths plays matchm aker How

can maths predict per fect pairings of people in love, friendship or business like some app s claim to do? In the 1960s, two American economists pondered a ridd le in matchmaking: with a dat a set of X number of wom en and X number of men who hav e each ranked their potent ial par tners in order of preference, cou ld you pair them successfu lly so that no couple preferred anothe r par tner? The economists , David Gale and Lloyd Shapley, form ed an algorithm that made the pairings possible. It’s called the Gale-Shapley algorithm , and it’s got plenty of surprising app lications beyond dating app s. For ty years after the algorit hm’s inception, in 2004, eco nomist Alvin Roth decided to test it on US patients in need of kidney transplants against possibl e donors. In 2003, only 19 lifesaving transplants had taken plac e, but in 2012, Roth and Sha pley received the Nobel Memorial Prize for Economic Sciences for matching more than 2000 successful kidney tran splants using the matchma king maths.

ictor? d re p re tu ic p ’s le g o o G l Can you foo h it .w w ra d k ic u q to d a e H to give it a go.

Movie special effects, video games, social media – the algorithms that allow these real-world wonders to function are built on the basics we learn at school”

maths? Why don’t we lifeeklseso det ached from

sroom maths “I think the reason our clas a lot of time learning the reality is because we spend ,” says ing how they can be applied fundamentals without see ha wit er e designer and develop Byron Hallett, a video gam IT. y and a Masters in Bachelor of Nanotechnolog thing but s bet ween maths and any link the You might not see on. It’s less ge gua lan a ol maths is like homework, but high-scho realm, ne onli the in te nica mu ls to com equipping you with the skil ’ll really be using. you the algorithms that you rather than spoon-feeding example o games, social media, for “Movie special effects, vide ction are fun to s these real-world wonder – the algorithms that allow ugh the tho en “Ev on. n at school,” says Byr built on the basics we lear nt.” orta imp scenes, it’s super maths is hidden behind the


Byron Hallett, video gam e designer and developer




careers you didn’t know need maths

rprising careers benefit su of r be m nu A s! ath m e who us It’s not only mathematicians if you’ve ever wondered So . ills sk s ath m el lev i un ol and from having senior high scho ” in maths class, read on… is? th e us to ing go er ev I “When am

1. Photog–$ra82Kphers

2. Urban planners


Salary range: $41K

but you’d be surprised how Photography is a creative job, getting the perfect shot. much maths is involved in terns try – lines, shapes and pat Photographers use geome ition and framing of – when planning the compos need to control exposure s her a photograph. Photograp y define a photograph) and the (the amount of light used to . help to am ogr l called a hist often use a mathematical too ation of what percentage ent res rep a vide Histograms pro ch highlights and shadows, whi of the photo is made up of re. osu exp sting comes in handy when adju


Salary range: $49K–$98 K

Urban planners work with local councils to ensure citie s can suppor t their residents with infrastructure and util ities. There’s heaps of maths invo lved in the planning of a city . This ranges from simple calcula tions of population densitie s and building areas to using sta tistics when calculating pro jections of land use and economic development. Planning tran spo rt requires modelling sof twa re based on calculus and it’s essential to understand the fundamental maths behind it.

3. Hospitality managers Salary range: $42K–$75 K

If you’re employed in the foo d industry, maths will ofte n be the key to avoiding a culinar y disaste r! Recipes have to be scaled to meet customer requirements and measurem ents need to be conver ted bet ween units or when making ingredien t substitutions. Hospitality ma nagers need to calculate how much of eac h ingredient they should sto ck and determine appropriate price points so the business doesn’t go ban krupt! Conversions and ratios are also of key importance when working in specialist roles such as recipe development, cof fee roasting, or wine and spirit production.


Legal eagle y of Sydney ongen Lan is a Universit ree in Law deg ble dou graduate with a o knows wh tics ma the Ma ced and Advan pay can ths ma first-hand that studying s. role al sion fes pro er off in legal and oth an es uir req firm law a in “Working a maths analytical brain and being with more age eng to me d student allowe re easily,” mo ts complex analytical concep a maths ing hav es iev says Longen. He bel nt way of fere dif a him ght tau d backgroun


to tackle thinking, which helped him logical h bot t’s tha problems in a way started a now has gen Lon e. and creativ consulting ent em graduate role at a manag g for lyin app en wh t tha firm. He found ped him hel ree deg ths ma his s, new role ages anyone stand out. Longen encour it at uni, even dy stu to ths ma who enjoys in a maths es if they don’t see themselv dying maths stu e tim at career. “I had a gre d off.” pai ely init def has it nk and I thi Research Scholar (Mathematics and Physics), University of Sydney

Bachelor of Science (Advanced Mathematics) and Bachelor of Laws, University of Sydney Quantitative Risk Intern, Macquarie Group

Summer Clerk, King & Wood Mallesons Law Firm

GRADUATE, management consulting firm

4. Lawyers Salary range: $49K–$117K Although lawyers don’t necessarily use calculators or calculus every day, having a mathematical background can be a huge career plus. The analytical mindset you develop studying maths and logic can often be applied in a legal career, particularly when examining evidence and forming rational arguments. It’s often recommended that law students study mathematics to hone their analytical skills, with studies showing a correlation between a lawyer’s maths skill and the quality of their legal decision making1.

High flyer R

enee Wootton is an Aeros pace Engineering gradua te who is studying a full-time Gra duate Diploma of Aviation at UNSW to fulfil her dream of bec oming a pilot. In her cur rent role in Qantas’ Fleet Technical Div ision, Renee carries out per formance analysis of aircraft, which relies heavily on maths. “It’s a lot of scientific pro blem solving and the app lication of numerical methods and statistics,” she says. Ren ee, a proud Tharawal woman, joined Qantas in 2011 through an Indigenous internship platform called CareerTrackers. In her wo rk, Renee uses algorithms to predic t fuel temperatures and cal culate aircraft loads to ensure the aircraft is mass balanced. She’s also involved in the development of in-flight apps and has worked directly with pilots, who need to stay upto-date with the latest technology. Ren ee will soon be on the oth er side of the cockpit and says she’s had the perfect background tra ining. “STEM and maths is ver y exciting – the skills you learn can be applied to so many differe nt industries.” – Larissa Fedunik Diploma of Science, Engineering and Technology, UNSW Graduate Program (Engineering), Qantas

5. Pilots

8K Salary range: $44K–$17

up on your maths ! skies, make sure you brush If you dream of taking to the ff and landing, pilots use sengers safe during take-o To keep the plane and pas cifications to calculate ed, altitude and aircraft spe multiple factors such as spe tware is on hand to sof t. Although flight planning angles of climb and descen n their routes. pla to try understanding of geome assist, pilots still need an rse. cou on y sta to ctional compasses They also need to read dire

Bachelor of Engineering (Aerospace), UNSW Fleet Technical Support Specialist, QantasLink


Engineering Intern, Qantas (CareerTrackers Internship Program) Advanced Graduate Diploma in Flying, Aviation, UNSW



Play smarter, not harder

is the best way to improve m gy e th in g slo hy gt len a Reckon aths says you’re wrong M ? ce an rm rfo pe ts or sp ur yo Windbreakers on wheels

Ever wondered why cyc lists tend to bunch up dur ing a race? It’s not just becaus e they’re vying for first place, but because they’v e done the maths and understand that this kin d of formation sees riders sitting behind the leader, expending up to 40% less energy. The cyclist at the front does the most work, breaking the headw ind and creating a low-pressure area behind their bike. So, if you’re taggin g along after the front rider, you’re act ual ly in a prime position to win the race because you won’t be using up all your energy reserves. Sne aky!

Spinning around

For the top players in bal l sports such as tennis and volleyball, you’ll find a litt le maths behind every winning serve. There’s som ething called the ‘Magnu s Effect’ which changes how a ball travels depending on how you spin it. The air pressure on the two opp osite sides of the ball will cha nge subject to the air mo ving around it. The side movin g congruently with the wind will speed up, and the side spinning aga inst it will slow down. The spe edier side of the ball creates a low-pressure are a and ‘sucks’ the ball in this direction. The advant age is it’s harder to predic t where the ball will end up when it’s not behaving by the usu al forces of gravity. And that means match point.



Drag racing in the poics,olworld champs such

of Exercise and Sports Science, University of Newcastle Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise and Sport Science), University of Sydney Bachelor of Sports Science, Victoria University

mp At the 2008 Beijing Oly d high-tech, ful l-body rte spo lps Phe as Michael the culated to reduce drag in swimsuits that were cal the o int lt pockets of gas bui water by 8%. With tiny ed more buoyant and benefit re we ers imm fabric, sw The ter! wa the n tha g from 780 times less dra s ted 20 new world record follow ing yea r, it’s estima in ips nsh pio am Ch ing imm were set at the World Sw ned ts… which are now ban Rome tha nks to the sui ir the to due es rac imming from all professional sw ell ckw Bro unfair advantage. – Eliza

MATHS+SPORT JOBS Data scientist: $61K–$135K Exercise physiologist: $45K–$72K Sports physiotherapist: $52K–$103K* *Source: Salaries according to




Game, set, match

is Australia, Senior data scientist for Tenn ed her career Stephanie Kovalchik has ac of tennis goals by combining her love with skills in statistics

her start in sport r Stephanie Kovalchik got keyboard while statistics from behind her Bachelor a h watching tennis on TV. Wit PhD in and ree of Science, Master’s deg nie was pha Ste t, bel Biostatistics under her earch res ics tist sta bio nal working in traditio ld work on her roles. But at night, she wou out stats-backed passion project : mapping big questions. answers to some of tennis’ her side hustle In 2016, Stephanie turned works with tennis she into her day job, and now much data so ’s ere statistics every day. “Th s questions like res add us available that can help , or to help give players how the sport is structured edge.” and coaches a competitive s maths processes like use nie pha Ste , day Day-toTheorem (which shows statistical modelling, Bayes’ wit s h new information ), how to update probabilitie ntif y things like how a qua and machine learning to affect their per formance. player’s physicality might ound in foundational “It’s good to have a backgr s s to work in statistics,” say maths, algebra and calculu . fan t ges big ’ ths always ma Stephanie, but she wasn’t into the highest class put was she en wh y It was onl lised, “I must have had in Year 7 that Stephanie rea .” a talent I didn’t appreciate been a passion, and Tennis, however, has always even helps her to do spending time on the court at it feels like to her job bet ter. “Knowing wh r research,” she hit a ball helps to inform you doesn’t really feel says. “I love the sport so it ell like work.” – Eliza Brockw



Bachelor of Science (Biology/Literature), California Institute of Technology

There’s so much data available to help give players and coaches a competitive edge”

Master’s degree in Biostatistics, University of California, Los Angeles

PhD in Biostatistics, University of California, Los Angeles


Senior Data Scientist, Tennis Australia & Research Fellow at the Institute for Health and Sport, Victoria University



Counting down to climate change

r most urgent challenges Global warming is one of ou ing e will require an understand – and finding a solution in tim hind climate and weather of the complex processes be


he clock is ticking for our rapidly changing climate, and for us to slow its already dangerous impact. But to do that we need to understand the complex processes influencing climate and weather – and it’s the ocean keeping time. Professor Matthew England, a physical oceanographer from the University of NSW, says understanding how the oceans affect the climate is a highly mathematical problem. “The flow of the oceans is governed by mathematical equations that are underpinned by the physical laws of nature,” he says. “You have to be able to work with these equations to understand the climate.” In maths speak, these Navier-Stokes equations describe the movement of a fluid. Scientists use them to model ocean currents and weather, including El Niño events (swings in ocean temperature in the Pacific that bring drought to Australia) as well as the global climate.

Mat thew England




Ocean of potential

Matthew was studying mathematics at university when he came across oceanography almost by accident. “I loved maths, but I wanted to apply it to a real-word problem,” he says. “I didn’t know about the field of oceanography but I was thrilled to discover it really needed maths.” With the fundamentals covered, scientists can wind back the clock to find out how past climates compare to today’s rate of change. Ailie Gallant, from Monash University, uses statistics to compare modern and historical climate data. “I’m trying to understand why we get droughts,” she says. “Using rainfall records and mathematical climate models, I can work out whether droughts today are unusual or not.” After finding maths challenging at school, Ailie realised she couldn’t learn about weather and climate at uni without it. “Applying maths to something I enjoyed made it easier,” she says. “There’s a way for everyone to understand maths, you just have to find something that makes sense – for me, it was weather.” Ailie also studies ancient climates, records of which are stored in tree rings, coral skeletons and ice cores. “I have to use statistical methods to put all that data together and make ice comparable with trees and coral,” says Ailie. “Maths is the language we use to understand those different things.” – Jo Khan


Ailie Gallant

Monash Univ ience (Mathematics m aj ersity MonashMaths or), Bachelor of Major Sc ie nc e (Mathematic Statistics m ajor), Univer s and sity UniWAM of Western Australia athStats Bachelor of Scie Advanced M nce (Physical Oceanog raphy / athematics) , University of NSW graphyUNSW

MATHS&EN VIRONMENT J O BS Meteorologi st: $50K– $1 29K Climate scie ntist (enviro nmental scientist): $5 1K– $94K Oceanograph er $39K– $108 : K* *Source: Sala ries accordin g to payscale.c om

eryone to There’s a way for evst u ju have understand maths, yo makes sense at th ng hi et m so nd fi to er” – for me, it was weath 14


s s e c c u s s t o o r s s a Gr ace aerosp Paul Wu switched fromtal seagrass vi engineering to savingundation skills fo e habitats, but th ayed the same that got him there st

s as a kid – being r Pau l Wu had two dream Great Barrier the ing sav and a fighter pilot mathematics, and hav ing Reef. Crucia l to bot h is the subject in his teens, developed a passion for Bachelor of Electrica l Pau l decided to study a ths) and sta rted his Engineering (heavy in ma eng ineering. ace osp career working in aer e up at the cam ity un ort opp When an e Science rin Austra lian Institute of Ma e the ski lls and tak to d ide dec yea rs later, Pau l sw and itch focus knowledge he’ d acquired ironment. env to his other passion, the l data ica tist sta in er Now a lectur sla nd een Qu (the T QU at e scienc y), Pau l led Universit y of Technolog g when tin dic pre o int a 2017 study likely to st lea is ng dgi dre l sta coa – which Dr Paul Wu uses stress seagrass meadows d to foo and lter maths to help save she al vit provide marine life ongs. ma rine life, including dug


To get there:

PhD (Aerospace engineering), QUT

Research fellow, Australian Institute of Marine Science

Lecturer, QUT


Bachelor of Electrical & Computer Engineering (Hons) and Master of Engineering Science, QUT

Model citizen

Using equations and com puter simulators, Pau l’s work involves cre ating models to mimic the rea l world. “A model allows us to predict what a rea l sys tem would do before try ing it,” he say s. Pau l says the seagrass res earch is his proudest work to date, and it cou ld cha nge the way aut horities and developers dredge por ts, helping to avoid sea grass loss. “Not only is it invaluable to the ma nagement of this threatened prima ry producer, but the methods developed can be extended to other systems such as cor al,” he says. Pau l says his ow n experie nce proves mastering mathematics and statistics doesn’t limit your career choices. “Maths provides an enormous wealth of tools for tackling the world ’s problems,” he says. – Jake Dean



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a university for the real world



The coastal route Joanna Aldridge has always loved maths but wasn’t clear what her future career might look like

learn your times tables is etting a parent to help you ge’s dad taught her how rid Ald one thing, but Joanna primary ations when she was in to solve differential equ d oye enj she s say a Joann school. Far from a chore, ts cep con the sp gra to e the challenge. “I was abl .” liked doing my homework straight away, so I even nce scie and ns itio pet Joanna got involved in com her , which only encouraged camps throughout school like is ths ma e it becaus to keep going. “I enjoyed says. she ge,” gua lan a ng rni lea e ool, Joanna wasn’t as sur sch h hig r However, afte jor ma to d ide She dec about her future studies. graphy, but says they in maths and physical geo at the time. However, didn’t really go together n meant the two areas soo advances in computing h. pat eer car g atin merged into a fascin


Joanna Aldridge, xxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxx xxxxx

Understanding risksin coastal geomorphology

rs After completing Honou r working as a research yea a ng – and then spendi rted her PhD, using maths statistician – Joanna sta risk in New South Wales. g to study coastal floodin lysing the risk of storms This landed her a job ana lia, building complex risk throughout eastern Austra ather charts from the we l ica models using histor well as wind, wave and Bureau of Meteorology as rainfall data. comes, might not represent all out “Historical climate data to ses ces pro ing erly d its und so we have to understan says. worst-case scenarios,” she capture the true range of the m fro nts eve e del extrem “For the risk analysis, I mo -10,000-year events.” -in one to up ar -ye -10 1-in (SIH) Sydney Informatics Hub Joanna now works with m tea nce scie a dat SIH . Her at the University of Sydney ng with alo cs lyti ana and ing uses advanced comput hout help researchers throug software engineering to . ges llen cha a dat n ir ow the university tackle the rested in pursuing a career Her advice for anyone inte get to keep an eye on job ads to with maths? “You should to always mit com and le, ilab ava s know the range of option iting y up-to-date with the exc learning; you’ll need to sta an Kh Jo – says. and fast-paced field,” she Bachelor of Advanced Science (Mathematics and Physical geography), University of Wollongong

i enjoyed maths because it was like learning a language”

Research Statistician

Environmental consultant


PhD, coastal geomorphology, University of Sydney

Research informatics manager, University of Sydney


To get there:


is h t n o g in k c a r c t e G r e e r a c g in v a s t e n a l p vironment for maths and the en

Combine your passion that can make a real difference er with a fulfilling care to people hen it comes to explaining Luke Dr k, wor for s what he doe ice. the g akin bre at d Bennet ts is goo thematics ma lied app in r ure lect A senior e Luk e, at the University of Adelaid the ut abo dy co-authored a 2018 stu ice on lls swe an impact of huge oce . tica arc Ant shelves around rried The research per fectly ma the and tics ma the ma for his passion wn dra e am bec “I nt. me environ s, more to environmental problem , because specifically Antarctic science and the g, gin the problems are challen s. say he outcomes important,” their Applied mathematicians use tanding ers und new a expertise to provide blems. pro orld l-w rea – to s of – and solution


BSc (Hons) + Master of Science, Mathematics/ Applied Mathematics, University of Reading

PhD, Applied Mathematics, University of Reading

ations on a daily This sees Luke solving equ why things and how d basis to understan und. aro ve mo ice) ting (such as floa damental fun is tics ma the ma s Luke say ring, inee eng to all facets of science and “You ch. ear l res par ticularly environmenta s. say he it,” t won’t get any where withou h as suc s blem pro big While helping solve r ula pop a like m see ht climate change mig ugh eno n’t are re career choice, the thematicians in environmental research ma s of opportunities Australia, so there are load the field. to make your own waves in maticians to Luke advises budding mathe cher ear res h search online. “Start wit igned des one e hav websites – most of us to you for py hap re we’ for the public and n Dea e Jak – .” ctly contact us dire

Postdoctoral researcher, University of Otago

Senior Lecturer Applied Mathematics, The University of Adelaide

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School of Mathematical Sciences



Marketing in the age of big data



thematics/Computer Scienc e (Data Science major), the University of Queensland Bachelor of Science (Data Science major), Cur tin University nBScData Bachelor of Science in Info rmation Technology/ Bachelor of Creative Intellige nce and Innovation, University of Technology, Sydney

MATHS+MARKETING JO BS Marketing analyst: $50 K–$ 98K Data analyst: $49K–$ 98K Digital marketing special ist: $47K–$ 83K Social media marketing ma nager: $34K–$ 95K* *Source: Salaries according to

The art and science of how to sell things to people has shifted away from intuition towards hard numbers – and mathletes are in huge demand as a result!


f TV was all you had to go by, envisioning a career in marketing might see you channelling Don Draper from Mad Men. But this iconic show was set in an advertising agency in the 1960s – and a lot has changed since then! Possibly the biggest shift has been the onset of the digital age – which means data, and lots of it. The result? Marketing is less about hunches and more about interpreting real numbers to figure out what buyers want and how to sell it to them.




Today, the face of marketing is less Don Draper and more someone like Jessica Hill – who has a Bachelor of Science majoring in maths from the University of Sydney. Jessica started out with her own maths tutoring business, which she marketed herself. That experience, combined with her maths background, was enough to land her a gig as a marketing analyst, and that’s what she’s been doing ever since. She now runs her own data science and analytics company, DataMinds, which she co-founded with another data scientist, Karina Samsonova. “Analysing data is like mining for diamonds,” says Jessica. “There are highly valuable insights hidden in huge volumes of data and we need to find them, extract them, and turn them into sparkly insights.” Jessica says she applies maths every day in her job. “Sometimes the calculations are fairly simple, but understanding whether the approach we’re taking is valid involves a deeper understanding of maths and stats.” DataMinds also develops machine-learning algorithms to predict if a customer has a high probability of cancelling their subscription to an app, for example, which is valuable info to have.

Data scientists with knowledge of marketing, and marketers with analytical skills are difficult to come by and highly valued”


CREATIVE FOUNDATIONS Positioning yourself at the intersection of marketing and maths equals career gold, says Jessica. “Data scientists with knowledge of marketing, and marketers with analytical skills, are difficult to come by and highly valued,” she says. And the numbers back her up. The 2017 Institute of Analytics Professionals of Australia report on skills and salaries found that data scientists with business know-how are earning the big bucks. Now universities are catching up. Jason Pallant, a lecturer in marketing at Swinburne University of Technology, teaches a new unit called Data Empowered Marketing. “So much of what we do in marketing now is data-based,” he says. “Which doesn’t mean we are no longer creative, it just means we have a really strong base for how we can be creative.” Jason graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Commerce, and worked as a marketing JASON PAL LANT consultant before returning to academia. “The ability LEC TURER, SW INBURNE to be comfortable with numbers, to be able to explain UNI VERSIT Y OF TECHNOLOGY them, and to tell a story and translate that to people who aren’t numbers-based, is a hugely valuable skill,” he says. “It’s what companies are looking for and what they need.” While Jason doesn’t have a pure maths background like Jessica, he says he did all the maths subjects he could through high school and focused on statistics at uni. “They’ve been so valuable to me in starting and continuing my career,” he says. – Gemma Chilton



Students from MQ Departm ent of Mathematics and Sta work on projects that affe tistics ct the real world

Reality check

A new maths program and cool research shows just how important maths is in our society working spend all their time alone f you think mathematicians from ics dem aca again! Two on obscure theories, think tics and ) Department of Mathema (MQ ’s sity ver Uni Macquarie unded know that maths is well gro Statistics want everyone to real the blems we can observe in in reality. “We work on pro ing crib tin Tzou. “It’s about des world,” says lecturer Dr Jus und us.” aro ld and improving the wor


Maths is about describing and improving the world around us” justin tzou an aircraft experiences, and therefore how much fuel it uses. He’s also modelled the flow of blood through umbilical cor ds to help understand how the cor d may affect foetal develop me nt. Jim knows how essential maths is to understanding the world around us. “Every tim e we engage with the wor ld, maths is a major driver,” he says.

Maths is everywhere

be applied to any thing. Justin loves how maths can he uses is differential One of the essential tools mends every STEM equations, which he recom amazing how much student should study. “It’s ed by differential of the world can be describ want to study anything equations,” he says. “If you so much more science related, you will be erstanding maths.” und on us successful if you foc earch is pat tern One of Justin’s areas of res tion e any thing from the distribu formation, which can describ erts. des in tion eta veg of s patche of spots on a cheetah to the in sation, which can be applied Another is in search optimi s or even fishing. search and rescue mission heads MQ’s Mathematics wh Professor Jim Denier, o on fluid , carries out a lot of work and Statistics Department ur of avio beh the understanding mechanics, which involves or water, air ds, flui of tion how the mo fluids. Jim is interested in ch drag mu how as h suc gs cts thin becomes turbulent. This affe

MQ’s new future-ready de gr

Dr Justin Tzou lecturer, MQ’s Department of Mathematics and Statistics


New for 2020, the Bachel or of Mathematical Scienc es at MQ is the only course of its kind in Sydney. Design ed to provide students with a mo dern mathematical and sta tist ical education, it covers key skil ls such as modelling, problem solving and data analysis, as well as the crucial sof ter skills. The degree has been create d in consultation with indust ry to prepare students for a wid e range of careers, includi ng analytics, finance, transpo rt and logistics, statistics and research. Final-year studen ts will put their skills to wor k on a substantial industry pro ject with potential employ ers . The three-year degree can be combined with just abo ut any other degree at MQ. – Lar issa Fedunik

To get there: 19



The best medicine

role in our health system al vit a y pla ns cia ati em ath ve lives – m It’s not just doctors who sa 6000 elective lia, 850 babies are born, 1 n an average day in Austra to a doctor . de ma are and 406,000 visits can surgeries are per formed y g; the lth are not just interestin The numbers around hea s. live ’s ple peo in s help us ma ke big cha nge ead, where a blocked infectious disease wil l spr Understa nding how an ack – all of that requires person’s risk of hea rt att artery might appear or a g numbers. analysing and interpretin expert on the job, as of health need a maths are That’s why so many population by working as trends in disease of the whether it be analysing g artificial intelligence a data scientist developin an epidemiologist, or as a lot of pathways are re the l admissions – systems to predict hospita to making a difference.




ics), Bachelor of Science (Advanced Mathemat UNSW UNSWAdMaths Graduate Diploma in Bioinformatics, oInform University of Adelaide UniAdDipBi ), istics (Stat ce Scien of elor Bach RMIT RMITBachStats

MATHS+HEALTH JOBS Epidemiologist: $48K–$149K Data scientist: $63K–$130K Bioinformatician: $84K–$175K* *Source: Salaries according to



Predicting the future isn ’t easy, but it’s part of the job for Michaela Ha ll. She is a modelling specialist at the Cancer Council NSW and has calculated that cer vical cancer will soon be extrem ely rare in Australia. This prediction was based on analysing data, including current rates of vaccine registration and cer vical cancer e som awe g screenings, as well as how Michaela Hall is modellin many people are being research with maths diagnosed with the diseas e, AK A using numbers. “This was a really excitin g finding,” she says. “We’v cer vical screening and vac e got great cine uptake rates in this country.” Michaela completed a Bac helor of Advanced Mathe matics at Macquarie University before startin g as a research assistant at the Cancer Council. “It was a really good introd uction to research and a crash course in biolog y,” she says. Michaela then completed her Masters of Mathematics and is now working on her PhD at the University of New South Wales. For her PhD, she is model ling HIV and HPV (huma n papillomavirus, a cause of cervical cancer ) infection in Tanzania to determine how to tackle these diseases. “I’m hoping to do some analysis of wh ich strategies can have the biggest impact in red ucing disease,” says Micha ela.

i’m hoping to do some analysis of which strategies can have the biggest impact in reducing disease”


Bachelor of Advanc ed Science (Mathematic s), Macquarie University Lab Assistant, UNSW

PhD, Applied Mathematics, UNSW Modelling specialis Cancer Council NSWt,

Read more on CareerswithSTEM.



Gold mine of data changing lives crunching the Dr Kudzai Kanhutu is le from all over numbers to help peopdical treatment australia receive me


hen you go to the doctor, it’s a normal part of the process that certain figures are generated: how far away you live, your age, weight, and even the time you wait for an appointment. “The numbers in healthcare are extraordinary but grossly underutilised,” says Dr Kudzai Kanhutu, the Deputy Chief Medical Information Officer at The Royal Melbourne Hospital. “A lot of it is just sitting there; it’s like untapped gold.” Kudzai is passionate about using this data to improve the way care is delivered in hospitals and address major gaps in equality. “We have the opportunity to fix some really significant system problems in healthcare,” she says. “For example, people in rural and regional areas often have profound difficulties accessing care. We have people who come from Darwin for a 10-minute appointment to see a specialist.” Kudzai and her team studied the data on patients travelling to be treated for hepatitis C virus and found that health outcomes were the same for people who video conferenced their appointments. They calculated an average of 600km of patient travel was saved per video conference. “It’s been beautiful to start to see an appreciation for what the patient journey really means for a lot of people. When you see it on scale like that, it’s incredible,” she says. Kudzai has also been mapping any unmet requests for a language interpreter at hospitals. The hospital can then use this data to offer jobs as interpreters to refugees who speak that language. “In Australia, we have large numbers of refugees arriving from other countries, and at the hospital we don’t have a lot of people who speak different languages and can interpret at a professional level,” she says. “So we’re solving two problems at once!” – Cherese Sonkkila


We have the opportunity to fix some really significant system problems in healthcare”

ine and Surgery Bachelor of Medicity of Sydney rs ive Un (Hons.),

Science, Bachelor of Arts/lbo urne University of Me d Telemedicine Refugee Health anlbo urne Hospital Me al Roy the Fellow,

Health Masters of Publiclea dership), l (Informatics/Clinica ne ur lbo Me of ity rs Unive

Information Officer, Deputy Chief Medical urne Hospital lbo Me the Royal




Harvesting good data

will be numbers driven The next revolution in farming ways ists are looking for new round the world, scient m fro ses los tion and reduce to improve food produc ult res The t. ugh dro as such env ironmental hazards the helping farmers increase ies log hno tec new of p is a cro ity of their land. efficiency and productiv log y wit h mingling of dig ital techno s thi to en giv e The nam ) and it’s (DA e ltur es is Digital Agricu traditional farming practic titute Ins m Far lian stra 2016, the Au hav ing a huge impact. In . 15% to farm productiv ity by up found DA can increase ise – a CSIRO terW Wa is ion act in An example of DA t of water farmers reduce the amoun project which is helping ked lin s have developed sensor used in their fields. “We ns isio dec rs ive platform that del wit h a cloud-based data s say ,” app an on rs me ent to far for irrigation ma nagem is leading the project. o wh ck, dri Bro se Ro Dr , but she entist since high school sci a be to d Rose wa nte be for her uld wo ths ma ant ort imp didn’t always know how ist at ent sci ch her role as a resear fut ure career. Today, in . day ry eve ths es on ma CSIRO, she says she reli maths do as a scientist relies on I g hin ryt eve st mo “Al g data and tin lec col , nts our experime – when we are pla nning statistics,” on ed bas all it’s t, lec a we col ma king sense of the dat o are wh s list cia also have data spe ss she says. “In my team we stre p cro t dic pre to lls ed maths ski able to use their advanc the weather data.” using our sensor data and




Curtin Univ of Agribusiness, ersity BachAgCU Agricultura l Engineeri ng Southern Q ueensland , University of USQB Bachelor of achAg Managemen Agricultural Product ion and t, Universi ty of New England: gProdUNE

MATHS&A GRICULTU RE Senior busi JOBS nes s analyst: $ 85K– $14 Microbiolo 0K gist: $47K– $ 8 6K Research scientist: $ 53K– $111K * *Source: S alaries acco rding to payscale .com

DIGGING FOR DATAtechnologies are mathematical

At the hea rt of these new data ana lysis. algorithms that fuel the data y we connect the sensor wa the is s “Mathematic and nts pla ls, soi how of g tandin revolution to our unders ’s IRO CS of der Andrew Moore, lea anima ls work,” says Dr a dat big s use ich wh , e Platform Dig iscape Fut ure Scienc . agricu ltural cha llenges and al ent nm iro env ve to sol e the rad upg to a ng satellite dat For example, CSIRO is usi lia. stra Au grid of dig ital soi l and landscape risk y bet ter our predictions of “The bet ter our maths, the s Andrew. fut ures on the land,” say

Dr Rose Brodrick from CSIRO’s WaterWise

TURE FARMS OF THE FUthe reckons DA initiative at CSIRO,

David Henry, who leads l be all about data. the fut ure of farming wil ls, in crops, oughout the farm, in soi “Sensors wil l be used thr and a dat h ught together wit on anima ls... and all bro drones,” e such as satellites and her ew els m fro n informatio ed oad upl ns all that data being says David, who env isio gence. elli int ial ific art h ana lysed wit stra ight to the cloud and ios nar they’ll be able to run sce For farmers, this means farm ions might impact their act ir to determine how the trace our to ier eas be l wil it predicts in the fut ure. David also to e abl e. “Consumers wil l be food back to the farm gat how it and m fro es their food com understand exactly where ber Gru – Karl was produced,” he says.

almost everything I do as a scientist relies on maths”






ture, statist Emi Tanaka, lect reer combining agricul ca ing rd wa re a d re secu


Emi completed a Bachel or of Science in Advanced Mathematics at the Universit y of Sydney, and later a PhD in Statistics because of the employment opport unitie s on offer. “Society has never been equipped wit h so much information and everyone wa nts to ma ke sense of it,” she says. Now she’s landed a career that grows more tha n just crops. “I get to do res earch I love, and at the sam e time educate the next gen eration in maths. I love helping them flourish and grow.” – Eliza Brockwell Research Fellow, School of Mathematics and Applied Statistics, University of Wollongong

PhD in Statistics, University of Sydney

A 21st century experience at Australia’s first university.

Lecturer in Statistics, University of Sydney

Skills in mathematics, statistics and data science are becoming increasingly essential in solving the challenges of the future. Study with us and you’ll learn from some of the brightest minds in the field. Make lifelong friendships and connections as you work towards an exciting global career. What will you start here?


18/6425 CRICOS 00026A

Bachelor of Science (Advanced Mathematics), University of Sydney

Dr Emi Tanaka from University of Sydney’s Statistics Research Group


might seem like apples tatistics and agricu lture n rsit y of Sydney statisticia and ora nges, but Unive rs me ing data to help far Dr Emi Tanaka is ana lys ps and uncover the cro le sib pos t yield the bes duction. science behind food pro n about the hea lth of atio orm Emi gat hers inf ironmental factors, crops aga inst variable env t supply, to qua ntify rien such as location or nut produce hardy pla nts. the circumsta nces that eding the strongest crop. But it’s not as easy as bre diversity in a crop and etic gen “Suppose we lose be says Emi. “There cou ld only have ‘elite’ varieties,” whole crop the so to, e tibl cep sus a deadly vir us that they’re re’s ain genetic diversity, the is wiped out. If you ma int us.” vir s thi to nt ista res ieties are a cha nce that some var re the y wh same log ic behind That, she explains, is the offer en om “W ics. tist sta in STEM and should be more women e. enc sci essential for advancing important ideas that are it’s not any ersity is important and div t tha Nature teaches us .” EM ST ersity in different for gender div

To get there:

at you satothw Reap wh , e University of Sydneyd education er ch ar se re d an an er ics ur



Buildings you can count on

describe building design, to y wa er oth an ’s at th – Geometry at human scale t for aspiring architects and it’s why maths is a mus START Y OUR CA R EER HER E

MATHS+D ESIGN ST Diploma o UDY f Design, Unive


ver thought about the maths that must have gone into designing and building the distinctive sails of the Sydney Opera House roof? (Answer: a lot! Check out the box below.) Maths is fundamental to solving some of architecture’s most complex problems – from figuring out how sound moves through spaces to constructing curved forms more efficiently. Daniel Prohasky, a lecturer in architectural engineering at Swinburne University of Technology, applies maths daily. Daniel’s an expert of design and engineering, so he can help realise architects’ creative visions of curved structures using complex geometry and machine learning algorithms (he’s also a roboticist). Daniel says he acts as a bridge between both the creative visions of designers and the equally creative output of mathematicians that have gone before him. “Without the insight from those who have looked very closely at nature, we would not have the impetus to develop mathematical systems of design from the patterns that have already been described,” he says. rsity of Canberra esignUC Bachelor o f Engine of Innova tion and D ering (Honours)/Ba of Techno esign, Swinburne chelor logy /EngDesig University Bachelor of Archite nSwin ctural Desi g n , R M IT Univers ity DesRMIT

MATHS+D ESIGN JO Design arc BS hitect: $4 Arch 8K itectural (s

– $ 95K tructural) engineer: Landscap $ 54K– $ 9 e designe 9K r: $44K– $ Interior arc 67K hitect: $4 0K– $ 87K *Source: S * alaries acco rding to payscal


Another architect for whom maths is crucial to the design process is Pantea Alambeigi, who works with acousticians to look at how sound moves through interior spaces. It was Pantea’s love of geometry that sparked her interest in a career in architecture. She’s now doing a PhD at Swinburne University of Technology addressing the need for privacy in meeting areas of open-plan offices. “I apply maths to find the optimum geometry that best responds to sound performance,” she explains. Pantea believes maths is an essential skill for architects. “Maths, physics, philosophy and all sciences are inseparable parts of architecture,” she says. Daniel agrees: “It is a highly sought-after skill that will be useful for decades to come in our current state of technology acceleration.” – Marlena Batchelor

The maths that maHdoeuse the Sydney Opf ofethera Sydney Opera roo Did you know the famous thematicians to thank ma d an House has engineers n as much as architect Jør for its final design almost t? cep con the original Utzon who came up with ing

Maths, physics, philosophy and all sciences are inseparable parts of architecture”

sult iconic ‘shells’ of the roof, con To work out how to build the g usin lly, tica ma the ma the shapes engineers needed to express form the t tha 2 196 in tion lisa ntual rea complex geometry. Their eve erical Sph e face of a sphere is called ‘Th could be derived from the sur e. ctur hite ing point in 20th century arc Solution’, and marked a turn

Find out more:




Secure a career in intelligence A maths degree could land you a job at Australia’s national security intelligence agency



To get there:

ver dreamt of working on top-secret projects to protect national security? A maths degree could lead to a career with the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO), a government body that exists to protect Australians from serious threats to security. Bec says choosing a career path seemed daunting when she was at high school, but she knew it was likely to involve maths. “I was pretty good at maths and there were a lot of career options for someone with an interest in statistics,” she says. So Bec studied a degree in mathematical sciences majoring in statistics, and then completed an Honours in mathematics. “I found that I really enjoyed the practical application of mathematics.” Bec successfully applied for the ASIO Future Technologist Graduate Program, a 12-month work placement and development program based at ASIO’s Canberra headquarters. “At the beginning of the program, I was excited but also anxious as I had no idea what to expect,” she says. However, Bec found the environment inviting and friendly, and the work she was doing fascinating and diverse. “I performed data analysis, investigated and researched solutions to common intelligence questions using machine learning, and more recently, conducted forensic media analysis” she says. “I have had visibility of how my work has contributed towards helping others,” she adds. “Moving to Canberra to join ASIO has been a massive step, but it is one that I know will give me a rewarding career.”

ASIO Future Technologists Graduate Program More than you expected… 25



Designer careers


o use maths everyday Meet five cool creatives wh

CERAMICS Jane McKenzie, artist

to beauty “Maths has been related (at least), eks Gre t ien anc since the ratio to who applied the golden propor tions. aesthetically pleasing architecture to create cture hite are influenced by arc I make sculptures that ns as atio cul cal full of scribbled and my sketchbooks are ss of kne thic e Th . por tions to use I work out the best pro re lptu scu a how width all affect the clay, its height and t.” righ me get it looks and maths helps




tile Mark Liu, fashion and tex designer, UTS

limits until “I pushed fashion to its re no we s que traditional techni understand to d trie I it. longer cutting turned to why, and that’s when I the underlying lain exp to tics mathema that moment, geometry of fashion. In thematics and art intersected with ma to happen.” d amazing things starte

GRAPHIC DESIGN Michelle Helderman, graphic designer

freelance “As an art director and maths use graphic designer I widths n um col everyday. From CMYK in s our col to working out maths is es, siz er pap and and RGB, my job. Even font extremely important to ders for images, sizes and weights of bor s.” are all based on number





ery designer Cushla Whiting, jewelljew ellery design.

FURNITURE Paul Chilton, furniture designer “I switched from working as an engineer to a furniture designer/maker because I wanted a more hands-on, creative career – but my maths education still comes in handy. For instance, mathematical concepts such as scale, proportion, symmetry, ratio and harmonics come into play. When I’m making the furniture, basic arithmetic and a good grasp of geometry and trigonometry is vital.”






ntly in “We use maths freque nds, the specific angles mo When choosing dia ermine the cut are and propor tions that det such as the crown ver y important. Angles le are measured using angle and pavilion ang but can be measured 3D scanning machines We also use pi to with trigonometry, too. small diamonds calculate the number of on their size.” ing around a band depend




Maths + Environment (climate change, weather modelling, risk management) Australian National University >> Advanced Computing (Research and Development)

Maths + Agriculture


Macquarie University >> Science/Environment (Applied statistics/ Mathematics) >> Mathematical Sciences/Environment/ Marine Science) Murdoch University >> Science (Mathematics and Statistics) QUT >> Mathematics (Statistics) >> Mathematics (Applied and Computational Mathematics) >> Science/Mathematics University of Adelaide >> Mathematical Sciences (Applied Mathematics) >> Mathematical and Computer Science University of Melbourne >> Science (Data Science) >> Science (Mathematics and Statistics) University of Queensland >> Mathematics (Applied Mathematics) University of Southern Queensland >> Science (Mathematics and Statistics) University of Tasmania >> Marine and Antarctic Science (Modelling and Technology) >> Science (Applied Mathematics) >> Science (Statistics) University of Western Australia >> Science (Mathematics and Statistics)

(digital agriculture, agritech, agribusiness, sustainability)

Maths + Health (public health, policy, statistics, biotechnology, bioinformatics) Australian National University >> Mathematical Sciences Macquarie University >> Medical Sciences/Biotechnology >> Science (Human Biology/Mathematics) University of Newcastle

Charles Sturt University >> Science (Mathematics) Griffith University >> Science (Applied Mathematics)/Data Science La Trobe University >> Commerce/Computer Science Macquarie University >> Science (Environmental Management and Spatial Science) >> Environment/Sustainability

>> Computer Systems Engineering (Hons)/ Mathematics

University of Adelaide >> Mathematical and Computer Sciences

UNSW >> Computer Science (Artificial Intelligence)

University of New England >> Agricultural Economics

University of Queensland >> Computer Science (Machine Learning)

University of Queensland >> Economics (Natural Resources and Environment)

University of Sydney >> Advanced Computing/Science (Quantitative Life Sciences) Western Sydney University >> Science (Mathematical Science)

University of South Australia >> Mathematics (Industrial and Applied Mathematics) University of Sydney >> Science (Mathematics) >> Science / Advanced Studies (Mathematics) >> Science / Advanced Studies (Agriculture)

For more study ideas go to Ca reersw it 27 MATHS


Maths + Design (creative arts, architecture) Charles Darwin University >> Creative Arts and Industries (New Media Design)/Information Technology Macquarie University >> Information Technology (Web and Mobile App Development Melbourne University >> Bachelor of Design (Graphic Design and Computing) QUT >> Games and Interactive Environments Mathematics UNSW >> Fine Arts/ Science (Mathematics)


University of Wollongong >> Creative Arts/ Science (Mathematics)

University of Notre Dame >> Commerce/Arts (Marketing/Mathematics) University of Queensland >> Mathematics (Data Analytics and Operations Research) University of Southern Queensland >> Information and Technology (Data Analytics) University of Sydney >> Bachelor of Science/Master of Mathematical Sciences

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of degree names at the time of publication. This is by no means an exhaustive list; there are plenty of other degrees available. Search degrees in science, tech, engineering and maths at Careers with STEM: Maths 2019 is a publication of Refraction Media. Copyright Š 2019 Refraction Media, all rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any manner or form without written permission. If you would like to reproduce anything from this magazine, email: This issue went to press on 17 April 2019. Printed in Australia by BlueStar Web. Cover image: Tina Smigielski Produced and published by: Refraction Media

UTS >> Design (Fashion and Textiles)/Creative Intelligence and Innovation >> Design (Architecture)/Creative Intelligence and Innovation) >> Design (Landscape Architecture)/ Science (Mathematics)

>> Bachelor of Science (Data Science) UTS >> Computing Science (Hons) (Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence) >> Computing Science (Hons) (Mathematical Analysis >> Science (Analytics)

Co-founder & Head of Content: Heather Catchpole

University of Wollongong >> Computer Science (Big Data)

Partnerships Manager: Natalie Rayment

Maths + Marketing

Western Sydney University >> Data Science

Editorial Assistant: Larissa Fedunik

(data science, data analytics, startups) Australian National University >> Applied Data Analytics Federation University >> Information Technology (Big Data and Analytics) Flinders University >> Business (Innovation and Enterprise) James Cook University >> Business (Business Intelligence and Information Systems) Macquarie University >> Information Technology (Data Science)

TAFE South Metropolitan TAFE WA >> Applied Engineering Mathematics TAFE NSW/UNSW >> TAFE Statement in Essential Maths for Higher Education TAFE WA >> Introduction to Trade Maths

HSC Maths at TAFE

>> Mathematical Sciences Monash University

TAFE NSW >> Essential Maths for Higher Education)

>> Computer Science (Data Science)

TAFE QLD >> Senior Mathematics

University of Adelaide >> Computer Science (Artificial Intelligence) >> Computer Science (Data Science)

Deputy Editor: Pippa Duffy

Writers: Lisa Harvey-Smith, Eliza Brockwell, Gemma Chilton, Larissa Fedunik, Chloe Walker, Jake Dean, Jo Khan, Karl Gruber, Marlena Batchelor, Cherese Sonkkila, Bianca Nogrady, Fran Molloy SUBSCRIBE AND ORDER COPIES: EDITORIAL & ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES: Email: or +612 9188 5459 POSTAL ADDRESS: PO Box 38, Strawberry Hills NSW 2012 Sydney, Australia WEB EDITION + MORE: ISSN 2209-1076

Bridging Courses James Cook University >> Preparatory Mathematics

University of Canberra >> Business Informatics

Macquarie University >> Mathematics Bridging Course University of Tasmania

UNSW >> Data Science and Decision (Business Data Science)

Includes Pathways to Engineering, Education, Health and Business


Digital Producer: Eliza Brockwell

Issue editorial advisors: Sophie Calabretto. Senior Lecturer in Applied Mathematics, Macquarie University; Fiona Kerr, data analyst, Atlassian; Emil Zankov, design and technology teacher, Pedare Christian College

>> Commerce (Business Analytics/Business Statistics/Business Information Systems)

Swinburne University of Technology >> Business Information Systems (Data Analytics)

Content Lead: Gemma Chilton

Art Director: Katherine Power

Bendigo TAFE >> Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (numeracy preparation)

RMIT >> Analytics (Hons)

Co-founder, CEO & Publisher: Karen Taylor-Brown

>> Mathematics Pathways


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