School of Business Administration
Elliott Hall, Room 427
275 Varner Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4485
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Ron Tracy
Faculty Adviser

Actuarial Science

A blend of mathematics, economics, statistics and finance, this major positions graduates to become experts in evaluating the likelihood of undesirable events and decreasing their impact. The program prepares students for jobs in the field, as well as provides the educational background to pursue an advanced degree in economics, mathematics, statistics or business administration.

Actuaries are experts in many aspects:
  • Evaluating the likelihood of future events
  • Designing creative ways to reduce the likelihood of undesirable events
  • Decreasing the impact of undesirable events that do occur

Because actuarial skill sets are a blend of strong analytical skills, business knowledge and understanding of human behavior to design and manage programs that control risk, this degree is offered jointly by the Department of Mathematics and Statistics and the Department of Economics.

Actuaries love what they do. Their work is intellectually challenging and they are very well-paid. Actuaries are key players in the management team of the companies that employ them. In a fast-changing world, with new risks and the need for ever-more creative ways to tackle them, there are constant opportunities for personal and professional growth in an actuarial career, and the pleasure of lifelong learning. Most actuaries work in a pleasant environment, alongside other professionals, and enjoy the respect of their peers.

Actuaries are the analytical backbone of our society's financial security programs. They are the brains behind the financial safeguards we have implemented in our personal lives, so we can go about our daily lives without worrying too much about what the future may hold for us. These are the safeguards that protect us from life's catastrophes. The insight into risk that actuaries have also helps to ensure that our savings are working hard for us, so that everything we love and cherish can grow and flourish. The work of actuaries benefits all of us.

Found in all sectors of the economy, actuaries 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 the state and federal government. Many work for consulting firms. Some are self-employed, enjoying financially rewarding careers that also come with the great flexibility of being one's own boss.

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