Is it possible to use mathematics to buy a car? Is there a secret mathematical formula to make anyone a millionaire? Can math be used to predict a global crisis such as shortage in food supply or running out of gasoline? Even more important, are these topics even discussed in a typical mathematics course taken by students? The unfortunate answer is no. The formulas necessary to work with the discussed topics are presented in the courses, but curriculum and dated textbooks focus on problems like, “If John mixes cashews and peanuts with cashes selling for $2.71 per scoop and peanuts selling for $3.14 per scoop… etc”. Math courses have long frustrated students for this very reason! One of the most famous lines heard by our students as we force difficult equations down their throats is, “You will use this one day. This is building critical thinking skills.” The reality is students can use this material now and we can still build critical thinking skills through engaging examples! The purpose of my talk will be to discuss the shortcomings of what students are currently receiving in their current mathematics education and how colleges and universities are working to acknowledge this trend. I am a tenured mathematics professor at San Bernardino Valley College and an alumni of CSUSB. I received my bachelor's in mathematics with departmental honors and a presidential letter of excellence for maintaining a 4.0 in all my upper division mathematics classes my senior year. I received my master's in applied mathematics from UCR. I enjoy sharing the beauty of applied mathematics with my students and creating a love for the subject. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at