I’d always thought of mathematics, or at least the study of higher mathematics, as a sort of pure academic field that didn’t lead to anything practical other than a tenured professorship.
Then I met Dave. He has a PhD in applied mathematics from Caltech. He is a total math nerd, if you know what I mean. The kind who plays around with the mathematics of infinities for fun on a Saturday afternoon.
But Dave is not a professor, he’s a millionaire. He took his PhD and applied for a job in the Texas petroleum industry.
They snatched him up, and he spent the next two decades doing advanced work in the probabilities of sinking test wells.
Then he retired. Wealthy.