"I'm not out to convince anyone that calculus, or even algebra and geometry, are necessities in the hotel business. But I will argue long and loud that they are not useless ornaments pinned onto an average man's education. For me, at any rate, the ability to formulate quickly, to resolve any problem into its simplest, clearest form, has been exceedingly useful. It is true that you do not use algebraic formulae but in those three small brick buildings at Socorro I found higher mathematics the best possible exercise for developing the mental muscles necessary to this process.

In later years I was to be faced with large financial problems, enormous business deals with as many ramifications as an octopus has arms, where bankers, lawyers, consultants, all threw in their particular bit of information. It is always necessary to listen carefully to the powwow, but in the end someone has to put them all together, see the actual problem for what it is, and make a decision---come up with an answer. A thorough training in the mental disciplines of mathematics precludes any tendency to be fuzzy, to be misled by red herrings, and I can only believe that my two years at the School of Mines helped me to see quickly what the actual problem was---and where the problem is, the answer is. Any time you have two times two and know it, you are bound to have four."

---Conrad Hilton, "By My Guest", Prentice-Hall Inc., 1957, p. 71.