I am the major advisor for students seeking a degree in Mathematics—Actuarial Track. Here, you can find useful information about the profession and our program at USI. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
What is an actuary?
An actuary is a business professional who analyzes the financial consequences of risk and finds ways to manage them. Actuaries must have a combination of strong analytical skills, business knowledge, and understanding of human behavior. Widely regarded as being intellectually challenging and well-paid, an actuarial career offers constant opportunities for professional growth.
"Actuary" was included as one of the Best Careers of 2007 in U.S. News and World Report. It also has been rated the second-best job in the United States by the Jobs Rated Almanac (Sixth Edition, 2002). The U.S. Department of Labor expects the employment of actuaries to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2014. See these statistics and more at http://www.beanactuary.org/.
Where do actuaries work?
While actuaries work in all sectors of the economy, they are more heavily represented in the financial services sector, including insurance companies, commercial banks, investment banks, and retirement funds. They are employed by corporations as well as by state and federal governments.
Students with a strong foundation in mathematics, problem-solving skills and an interest in a business career should consider the actuarial profession.
How can I be an actuary?
Actuaries achieve professional status by passing a set of examinations prescribed by the Society of Actuaries (SOA) and the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS). The road to admission as an Associate, then Fellow, of SOA begins with the preliminary exams offered by these societies:
- Exam P/1 - Probability
- Exam FM/2 - Financial Mathematics
- Exam MFE/3F - Actuarial Models: Financial Economics
- Exam MLC/3L - Actuarial Models: Life Contingencies
- Exam C/4 - Construction and Evaluation of Actuarial Models.
In addition to the preliminary exams, Validation by Educational Experience (VEE) must be satisfied for three subjects: economics, corporate finance, and applied statistical methods. This requirement is typically satisfied through successful completion of the VEE approved courses offered by a college.
Actuarial track at USI
The Department of Mathematics at the University of Southern Indiana offers the actuarial track coupled with a bachelorís degree in mathematics. Along with the courses required for a degree in mathematics, students complete courses in economics, finance, and computer science to satisfy VEE requirements, to prepare for the first two preliminary exams administered by SOA and CAS, and to attain the mathematical foundation for further studies in actuarial and quantitative finance fields. Students who complete the actuarial track develop a combination of skills and knowledge in business and mathematics that is highly marketable.
- Course checksheet for Mathematics—Actuarial Track (PDF file)
- Actuarial Track information on the University Bulletin
- BeAnActuary.org (by SOA and CAS)
- Society of Actuaries (SOA) webpage
- Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) webpage