Actuarial Science is a cross-disciplinary field whose practitioners use knowledge from Economics, Business, Finance and Mathematics to solve problems involving risk assessment and risk mitigation and management. Risk normally involves some type of loss when events do not go as expected. This loss might be a home resulting from a fire or a loss in income due to the death of a parent who is a financial provider for the family.
As illustrated by the previous examples, insurance companies are major employers of actuaries. The loss of income due to retirement or aging is a growing risk as our population ages. Hence, actuaries are also employed by pension funds, financial services organizations, banks, and government. Actuaries provide important services essential for the operation of our economy and as such enjoy their work and are well paid. To read more about what actuaries do, go to the website beanactuary.org and read, "What is an Actuary?"
Actuaries belong to a profession in which professional knowledge is essential. Therefore, part of being an actuary is validating that this knowledge has been mastered by taking actuarial exams. These exams and the educational objectives which will be tested are governed by actuarial societies. The Society of Actuaries (SOA) and the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) sponsor the exams. Students should expect to pass one or even two exams before graduating or applying for a position as an actuary.
As stated in the Appalachian program description, the B.S. in Actuarial Science provides full preparation for the first two exams, Exam P/1 Probability and Exam FM/2 Financial Mathematics as well as additional coursework toward further exams. To read more about the exams, go to the website beanactuary.org and read, "Actuarial Exams." At this same website, you will read about the SOA and CAS requirement of validation by education experience (VEE). This is obtained by taking courses in Applied Mathematics, Economics, and Corporate finance. As stated in the ASU program description, the B.S. in Actuarial Science also provides courses which will satisfy this requirement.
Due to the nature and importance of their work, actuaries are in high demand. Visit this government website for the most recent economic outlook for the profession: