Focus on Occupations: Math-Related Occupations Add Up to Great Opportunities

Focus on Occupations, Math-Related Occupations Banner

March 14th or 3.14 is known as Pi Day. Pi is an irrational number and the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter.  Almost every job requires people to have knowledge of math. In honor of Pi Day, CareerLocker focuses on occupations where people rely heavily on math to complete job tasks. Occupations include climate change analysts, computer programmers, construction materials estimators, mathematicians, and mathematical statisticians. Many of these occupations are hot occupations and projected to grow by at least 27% over the next 10 years. This adds up to great opportunities!

  • Climate Change Analysts–Climate change analysts study weather patterns to see how and why our modern climate is different from the climate of the past. They spend their time analyzing data and writing papers and speeches. They specifically study atmospheric temperature, ocean conditions, ice masses, and greenhouse gases. They are concerned with determining how these changes impact natural resources, animals, and people. Climate change analysts attempt to create mathematical models of climate change.
  • Computer Programmers–Computer programmers write instructions that tell computers to perform a variety of different tasks.Programmers use computer languages to write programs. They may write programs that will perform accounting or billing functions. Other programs may operate robots or computer-aided design (CAD) machine tool operations. Some programs allow people to create artwork or graphics, while others coordinate space flight operations.
  • Construction Material Estimators— Cost estimators determine the cost of manufacturing products or providing services to prospective customers. They must arrive at costs that meet customer expectations, are lower than their competitors, and are profitable to the organization. They calculate the cost of all the necessary parts, raw materials, and equipment. Estimators arrive at labor costs based on hourly rates and the time they think it will take to produce the product or provide the service desired. They prepare itemized cost estimates and/or present total project costs.
  • Mathematicians–Mathematicians specialize in either theoretical mathematics or applied mathematics. Most mathematicians work in applied mathematics. They solve problems using many different kinds of math and math-related areas. These include computer science, engineering, physics, and business management.
  • Mathematical StatisticiansStatisticians use math to design, interpret, and evaluate the results of experiments, surveys, and opinion polls. They also use math to predict future events. They often apply their mathematical knowledge to specific subject areas, such as economics, human behavior, natural science, or engineering.

Construction material estimators, mathematicians, and mathematical statisticians are Hot Occupations. Over the next 10 years, job openings in this occupation are projected to increase by at least 27%.

Focus on Occupations: Animal-Related Occupations


In October and November, our four-legged friends and wildlife are in the spotlight. CareerLocker acknowledges National Animal Safety and Protection Month, Adopt a Shelter Dog Month, Squirrel Awareness Month, and Wishbones for Pets Month.  People who support the safety, protection, adoption, awareness, or well-being of pets and wildlife serve animals and the animal lovers in us all.  A great way to remember and honor the value of wildlife, animals and pets is by recognizing those who work with animals in various capacities. This month CareerLocker highlights animal chiropractors, animal trainers, veterinarians, veterinary technicians, and wildlife biologists.

  • Animal Chiropractors–provide an alternative form of health care for cats, dogs, and horses using the same principles as applied by human chiropractors. Using their hands, they manipulate the spinal cord and joints to relieve pressure on nerves that affect feeling and control of the surrounding muscles. Pet owners are referred to animal chiropractors by veterinarians when x-rays confirm that surgery is not warranted for pets that have slipped or fallen, been injured due to strenuous activity, or that have survived automobile accidents. The animal chiropractor also instructs the pet owners on the acceptable level of activity and may make diet recommendations for the animals under their care.
  • Animal Trainers–train animals for riding, security, performance, obedience, or assisting persons with disabilities. Animal trainers do this by accustoming the animal to human voice and contact, and conditioning the animal to respond to commands. Animal trainers may train animals to prescribed standards for show or competition. Animal training takes place in small steps, and often takes months and even years of repetition. During the conditioning process, trainers provide animals with mental stimulation, physical exercise, and husbandry care. In addition to their hands-on work with the animals, trainers often oversee other aspects of the animal’s care, such as diet preparation.
  • Veterinarians–protect animal health through medicine, surgery, and providing information about animal health to pet owners and animal caregivers. Veterinarians practice medicine and surgery with companion pets, animals raised for human consumption, horses, animals in zoos, animals for military use, or in a combination of fields. Veterinarians oversee and inspect every aspect of the animal food supply, ensuring that the United States has one of the safest in the world. Veterinarians usually work with either small animals (such as dogs or cats) or large animals (such as horses or cows). They may specialize in specific medical fields such as oncology or neurology. Other veterinarians may do research, teach, or work in the animal industry.
  • Veterinary Technicians–assist veterinarians as they examine and treat animals. They often administer anesthetics to animals and assist veterinarians as they perform surgical procedures. They also sterilize instruments and clean operating and examining rooms. They lift and handle animals and give them medication as prescribed by the veterinarian. They clean the animal cages and prepare food for each animal as instructed. They note the condition and behavior of the animals and report these observations to the veterinarian. They may do laboratory tests to identify diseases or parasites. Some specialize in caring for small animals and work in veterinary clinics that care for dogs and/or cats. Others assist veterinarians who care for large animals such as cattle or endangered species housed in zoos.
    • This is a Hot Occupation. Over the next 10 years, job openings in this occupation are projected to increase by at least 27%.
  • Wildlife Biologists–study the populations, habitats, and conservation of wildlife and fish. Wildlife biologists usually specialize in subtopics within the field of wildlife biology. For example, some may study the relationship between predators and prey within an ecosystem. Others may study the routes of migratory birds. Wildlife biologists may research the impact that humans or environmental changes have had on wildlife, or they may coordinate programs to control the outbreak of wildlife diseases. Yet other wildlife biologists may specialize in the conservation and management of wild game, such as pheasants or deer, and the restoration of habitat. Wildlife biologists explain what they have discovered through their research by writing reports, publishing scientific papers or journal articles, and making presentations. Additionally, wildlife biologists may visit schools, clubs, interest groups, and park interpretive programs to teach people about wildlife.

Learn more about these and other occupations on CareerLocker.

Focus on Occupations


Occupation ASAP:  Join the Workforce Quickly with
High-Skill and High-Demand Occupations

Are you the type of person who prefers practical or “hands-on” learning?  Do you like to use your hands to create things or see results quickly? Is helping others high on your priority list?  In March, CareerLocker features occupations, which require a technical education, apprenticeship or short-term training. Many of these occupations are high-skill and high-demand requiring a variety of technical skills. This month we highlight three fast-growing and exciting occupations including heavy truck drivers, nursing aids/assistants, and welders.

In many states and more specifically Wisconsin, you can get a jump start on your career by developing your technical skills through studying a trade during high school, or shortly thereafter. (CareerLocker users can go to the Education tab to learn about School-to-Career Programs.)  Furthermore, many people decide to change occupations later in life and can quickly acquire a new set of skills through technical education. For instance, career changers can develop skills in new occupations while get paid for doing so. (CareerLocker users read about Adult Apprenticeships.) Through this program, participants acquire little-to-no debt, and become an expert in a skilled occupation or trade.

  • Heavy Truck Drivers. The information highway isn’t the only detour you want to take in life–get on the transportation highway. Globalization, the internet, and improved technology have increased trade both domestically and internationally. Heavy truck drivers transport and deliver goods on short and long distance routes. These big rigs weigh three or more tons. Carrying this heavy of a load, truck drivers inspect their rigs for safety. To insure safety, they may also assist with or inspect the loading of their goods, so they are loaded in a way so as not to shift on the trip. They also conduct efficiency analyses by logging data on mileage, fuel consumption, and performance of the truck. With the rise in trade of goods and products, the demand for skilled truck drivers is on the move. Join this movement and travel cross-country. Heavy truck driving is a “hot” job. 
  • Nursing Aids/Assistants. Another “hot” job in which you can quickly get to your occupation destination through a certificate program or technical education, is nursing. Working side-by-side with nurses, nursing aids/assistants collaborate on the healthcare of their patients. With the aging of the baby boomers, health care is quickly becoming a high-demand industry. Nursing aids spend much of their time working one-on-one with patients. They take and record body temperatures, pulses, and breathing rates. They report any changes in patients’ appearance, behavior, or physical ability to their nursing supervisor. They bathe, dress, and feed patients. Serving every age-group, they work in a variety of settings from hospitals to assisted living centers, clinics, and nursing homes. Browse health care occupations on the CareerLocker Occupations tab to learn more about the scope and variety of such occupations.
  • Welders, Cutters, Solderers, and Brazers. While heavy truck drivers keep our world moving, and nursing aids keep our world healthy, welders, cutters, solderers and brazers keep our world together. Welders fasten metal pieces by joining them together. Cutters, Solderers and Brazers are all types of welders using different temperatures and materials depending upon the task. Welders must also know the ways that steel, bronze, aluminum, and other metals react to heat, cold, and pressure. An occupation with seemingly limitless opportunities, welders may create sculptures or art installations, build and fix things such as computers, locomotives, ship and boat buildings, or even work in robotics. Keep things from falling apart and meld into this flexible occupation.

Whether you choose to move things, help people, or melt things together, each of these occupations, heavy truck driver, nursing assistant, and welder are needed to address challenges in the world. Further, each of these occupations requires a high level of competence, attention to safety, and application of technical skills. To view these highlighted occupations and watch videos, go to the CareerLocker homepage.

“Hot” jobs are jobs projected to increase nationally in job openings by at least 27% over the next 10 years.


Co-written by Asma Easa and Julie M. Hau.

Asma Easa
Asma Easa works at the Midwest Transportation Workforce Center at University of Wisconsin-Madison, one of five regional transportation workforce centers in the country. She is pursuing dual masters in International Public Affairs, and Urban and Regional Planning. Her focus areas include education policy and development.