Sean Dillard

2012 Major: Mathematics

Current Employer: Princeton Consultants — New York, New York

How has being a Mathematics graduate from Duke helped shape your professional success?

"The most important takeaway from a degree in Mathematics is the skill of challenging assumptions.  Of thinking abstractly.  Of taking something you have assumed to be true all your life and finally pondering why. The foundations of number theory and geometry are forced into our heads from an early age, but actually proving them is something entirely different.  This skill has a number of applications in the real world, and teaches you to be innovative and how to solve problems in ways that other people haven't though of."

What advice would you give students in Mathematics?

"Mathematics is one of those disciplines that benefits from synergy. For that reason I would strongly recommend complementing your mathematics education with either another area of study — economics or computer science, for example — depending on your interests."