The accounting field is generally one of the most rewarding professions out there, but actuary – that's next level. The actuarial field delivers the right combination of skill and return, since it takes some serious, specialized math and statistics abilities, and pays well across the board thanks to marketplace demand. In many ways, it's the perfect 21st-century career – math, technology, and business all fused into a useful job that shapes more aspects of daily life than most people will ever know.
What is an Actuary?
Actuaries are experts in risk, and their particular set of skills has been used by insurance companies, financial institutions, and investment firms for generations. Using statistical data and creating models of probable outcomes, actuaries figure out risk and return on everything from health insurance customers to stock sales.
In the age of Big Data, though, actuaries are more needed than ever. Being an actuary was once as much an art as a science, making predictions about events and judgments about human nature. But with more information available than ever, and the digital tools to process that information becoming more sophisticated by the day, actuaries are part scientist, part magician – and the computer is the magic wand.
The 10 Best Actuarial Science Degree Programs
1. Brigham Young University
2. Florida State University
3. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
4. Ohio State Universityt
5. University of Minnesota, Twin Cities
6. Appalachian State University
7. University of Wisconsin - Madison
8. University of Northern Iowa
9. CUNY Baruch College
10. University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire
Actuary Education Requirements
There are now places for actuaries in far more fields than just insurance and finance – public health, security, education, and technology, to name a few. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job market for actuaries is expected to rise by 22% over the next decade – far above the national average.
Part of the reason there are few actuaries is because the education and training is rigorous. Prospective actuaries need at least a bachelor's degree in math, statistics, business, or some related field, but that's really just the start. Becoming an actuary requires passing many exams offered by the Society of Actuaries and the Casualty Actuarial Society – five preliminary exams, and several more for further specialization. Plus, working actuaries need endorsement from one of the recognized actuarial organizations, like the SOA or CAS.
Accounting Degree Review has put together the 50 Best Actuarial Science Degree Programs for 2018 to help prospective students choose their route to this exciting field. Many colleges and universities offer actuarial science, either through mathematics or business departments, and many have association with the SOA or CAS. Some are even recognized as Actuarial Centers of Excellence or Advanced Curriculum programs.
Not every actuarial program gives students the same quality of education, and the same access to job opportunities, however. That's why Accounting Degree Review has compiled information about three factors to help students determine the strongest program for them:
- Reputation (based on the College Consensus, an aggregated higher education review)
- Student Success (based on graduation rate)
- Affordability (based on IPEDS data)
With these three data sets equally weighted, ADR determines which schools are most likely to give students the education and connections they need to hit the job market with skills and advantage.
all images sourced from institution's website
Founded in 1875 by Latter-Day Saints leader Brigham Young, and counted as one of the largest and most respected religious universities in the US, Brigham Young University has long been the destination for Mormon students worldwide. BYU is recognized as one of the best values in higher education, as church donations support the vast majority of students. But in recent years Brigham Young has earned a reputation beyond strictly Mormon circles for its educational excellence, especially in business. BYU has earned accolades from U.S. News & World Report, Forbes, and Bloomberg Businessweek for its programs in management, finance, and more.
The BYU BS in Actuarial Science degree is a perfect example of Brigham Young’s business expertise. Offered by the Statistics Department, the actuarial science degree program prepares students for the mathematical and analytical demands of an actuary career. Those demands are not just mathematical and statistical – though the degree is, of course, heavy on statistics – but technological. Students are prepared not only for actuarial analysis as it exists now, but for adapting to the future of the field, which is changing rapidly due to Big Data and economic transitions. Brigham Young University is a top choice for this career of tomorrow.
One of Florida’s two preeminent universities – the state’s version of “flagship” – Florida State University was founded in 1854 along with the University of Florida: an institution on each side of the Suwannee River. Over its history, FSU developed into Florida’s foremost STEM-focused research university, with a high level of research spending, an economic footprint of over $10 billion, and some of the nation’s finest labs and research centers. FSU is also a leader in business, economics, and accounting for the state, and has been ranked one of the top 50 public universities nationally by U.S. News & World Report.
The university’s excellence in technology and mathematics informs FSU’s Actuarial Science bachelor’s degree program. The first dedicated actuary program in Florida, FSU’s degree remains cutting-edge and intensive, giving students a deep grounding in mathematics, economics, finance, and related fields. Students can also choose between a BA or a BS degree, tailoring their coursework to their career goals – more technical, or more managerial. With a reputation throughout Florida and nationally, FSU provides students with all they need to pass the actuarial exams, and to enter the job market ahead of the pack.
Illinois’ top land-grant research university, and a central part of professional learning in the state, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is one of the Midwest’s most trusted names. Founded in 1867 as a land-grant university under the Morrill Act, U of I was intended to open up higher education to the people of the state, beyond the elites that the state’s private universities served. Today, Illinois is known for its accessibility, excellence, and far-reaching influence, not only in Illinois and the Midwest, but nationally and internationally. Today, Illinois is ranked in the top 20 public universities nationally by U.S. News & World Report, and is one of the top schools in the Midwest for accounting.
The Actuarial Science Program at Illinois is a fully developed, interdisciplinary division dedicated to the needs of today’s aspiring actuary. U of I’s actuarial science program brings together math, business, statistics, and technology to give students the fullest possible picture of the actuarial field. The Department of Mathematics has been named a Center of Actuarial Excellence by the SOA, and given the University Award by the Casualty Actuarial Society. Students can trust that they are getting all they need not only to pass the actuarial exams, but to take on their careers with all of the market reputation and connections of the University of Illinois.
The Ohio State University is a model of the modern public research university, with a history stretching from the agricultural and mechanical school founded in 1870, to the 3rd-largest university in the nation today. Like other land-grant universities, OSU was built on practical education in applied sciences, which made it a central part of research and professional education for Ohio and the Midwest. In the 21st century, OSU has combined accessibility with excellence, from fully online programs to some of the most innovative degrees out there. From STEM to business, OSU is a national leader.
Ohio State’s Actuarial Science degree program is based in the Department of Mathematics, but combines math and statistics with business, accounting, and finance from the Fisher College of Business, one of the nation’s top-ranked business schools. This interdisciplinary program is designed around the real-world requirements of the actuarial science field, with internships, professional development, and interviews with national industry leaders. Students are prepared to pass at least one, and possibly all five actuarial exams by graduation, getting graduates off on the right foot into their career. Ohio State’s national reputation makes it one of the heavy hitters.
Minnesota’s foremost public research university, the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities is the oldest and most prominent public university in the state, and one of the ten largest in the nation. Founded in 1851, UMN is known worldwide as a global leader in STEM research and development, as well as the Midwest’s premier professional educator. UMN is the alma mater of many of Minnesota's most notable leaders, artists, writers, and scientists, and has been recognized as a Public Ivy for its quality, value, and influence. From medicine and engineering to law and business, UMN creates a large footprint throughout the Midwest and the US.
Students have two option for earning the University of Minnesota’s Actuarial Science degree. Students who prefer a BA (which may be more suited to business and management) can earn their degree from the College of Liberal arts, while students interested in a BS (more highly technical) can turn to the College of Science and Engineering. Students earn not only a foundation in math and statistics, but also take part in actual ongoing research studies and work with mentors directly engaged with the field. The actuarial exams are no trouble for UMN graduates, and the job market in the Midwest and beyond trusts the University of Minnesota like no other.
The most prestigious public research university in the Appalachian Mountain region, Appalachian State University has put the needs of its people up front from the very beginning. App State began with a groundswell of support from locals who needed education, founded in 1899 as a normal school to train schoolteachers. In just a few years, the importance of education for the mountains had become clear to the state, and Appalachian grew into a full state university. Today, Appalachian is known as the foremost educator for professionals in the region, and is ranked one of the top 10 regional universities in the South by U.S. News & World Report.
Appalachian State’s Actuarial Science BS degree program prepares students for the actuarial exams in an interdisciplinary, market-focused format. ASU has been named an Advanced Curriculum program by the SOA, promising students the highest order of preparation for the actuarial exams. Students in the Appalachian Actuarial program also take a senior seminar under the mentorship of a working professional in the actuarial field, building a network for employment after graduation, and experience in real-life actuarial analysis. App State has a trusted reputation throughout the South, and graduates can enter the job market with total confidence.
Founded in 1848 in the new state’s capital, Madison, the University of Wisconsin is at the heart of Wisconsin’s life in many ways. Its connections to the government, industry, and culture make UW one of the most influential institutions in the state. When the university became a land-grant institution in 1866, it also set the stage for UW to become one of the Midwest’s leaders in STEM and professional studies as well. Today, UW is not only ranked one of the dozen best public universities nationally by U.S. News & World Report; the UW School of Business is also one of the oldest and most respected schools of its kind in the US.
The University of Wisconsin BBA in Actuarial Science degree program is an SOA National Center of Actuarial Excellence, and one of the most advanced actuarial science programs in the nation. Students contribute to the Technology Enhanced Learning Project, using their analytical and technical skills to develop educational support systems. With a full preparation for the actuarial exams and deep connections to the insurance, finance, and government sectors of Wisconsin, UW offers actuarial science graduates a prime opportunity.
The University of Northern Iowa is a well-regarded regional university dedicated to providing valuable professional and technical education for Iowa’s people. UNI was founded in 1876 as a normal school, preparing schoolteachers for the rural schools, but it had its roots in an orphanage for Civil War orphans. The normal schools began as a 2-year, hands-on training program, growing into a teacher’s college as standards for teacher education changed. However, the demands of the 21st century job market have pushed UNI even farther into professional education, and UNI has earned Princeton Review recognition as one of the top regional universities in the Midwest.
The University of Northern Iowa’s Statistics/Actuarial Science concentration is one option for students earning a BA in Mathematics. With a regional university’s focus on preparing students for the job market, UNI’s actuarial science program steeps students not only in math and stats, but in the technology and real-world application of their knowledge. The UNI program is intended to be adaptable to a wide range of fields where actuarial science is useful, from government to insurance and finance. Plus, UNI is widely ranked as a value, meaning that students get a stronger return on their investment than the average.
One of the world’s premier names in business education, Baruch College is a senior college of the City University of New York, dating back to the Free Academy of 1847. As part of CUNY, one of the most prestigious public university systems in the world, Baruch College has been central to New York’s development as an international business center. Originally the City College’s School of Business, Baruch is today a full college just around the corner from Wall Street, where many of banking and finance’s most powerful leaders were educated. The Zicklin School of Business is regularly ranked as one of the best in the world.
Baruch College’s Actuarial Science major is tied to the real world of actuarial science like few other programs. With business and economics courses from the Zicklin School, and the Mathematics Department’s statistics grounding, the program prepares students for the real work of actuarial analysis, and for the actuarial exams. More so, Baruch College’s intense connections to New York’s business world means students are within reach of the most rewarding careers in the field. It’s fast company, and a perfect launchpad into the future of actuarial science.
The University of Wisconsin system is one of the finest public university systems in the US, partly based on the excellence of the flagship in Madison, but primarily because of its model regional universities. UW-Eau Claire began as a normal school in 1916, training Wisconsin’s schoolteachers, but the need for higher education in the Chippewa Valley region helped UWEC grow to a full state university by the middle of the century. Today, Eau Claire is ranked in the top 5 public regional universities by U.S. News & World Report, and provides opportunity across professional fields, including actuarial science.
The UW-Eau Claire Actuarial Science degree program is named an Advanced Curriculum program by the SOA. With small classes and close mentorship, as well as deep connections to the field in the Midwest, UWEC provides students with a full understanding of the profession. From risk management to predictive analysis, students from UWEC’s actuarial science program are ready for the current field. They’re also ready for the job market, with a strong rate of success passing the actuarial exams before graduation, and nearly perfect job placement for recent graduates. It’s all quality, no fooling, from UW-Eau Claire.
Founded in 1855, Pennsylvania State University is one of the most prominent public research institutions in the nation, and Pennsylvania’s only land, sea, space, and sun-grant university. Originally an agricultural school, Penn State’s heritage made it an ideal location for STEM and business, building over a century and a half into a world leader in engineering and technology. Named a Public Ivy, Penn State is also home to the Smeal College of Business, one of the nation’s top business schools. Smeal has been ranked in the top 10 and top 20 by publications like Bloomberg Businessweek, U.S. News & World Report, and Forbes.
The Smeal College offers Penn State’s Actuarial Science degree program, a specialization in the Risk Management major. Coming from the business school, the Penn State program is geared toward the insurance industry, as well as finance, banking, and government. Students prepare for the first five actuarial exams with courses in statistics, finance, economics, and more. Penn State’s reputation in the field is unparalleled, and the university hosts the largest actuarial job fair in the nation, with more than 30 insurance and finance firms recruiting Penn State’s top-tier graduates.
Binghamton University has held a central place in higher education for New York’s Southern Tier region since 1946, when it was founded as a satellite campus of Syracuse University. Binghamton has had nontraditional and adult education at its heart from the beginning; its original mission was to provide opportunity for returning WWII veterans. Today, Binghamton is a public university and part of the SUNY system, one of the nation’s top 5 public higher education systems. Named as a Public Ivy, Binghamton University is regularly ranked one of the top public universities in the northeast.
The Binghamton University Actuarial Science degree program offers two degree paths. Students can choose the BA in Actuarial Science, which focuses more broadly on the liberal arts and communication, or the BS in Actuarial Science, which is more demanding in math and statistics. Both programs prepare students to pass four of the SOA actuarial exams by graduation, and both provide students with the Binghamton reputation on the job market. The northeast, and New York in particular, is the hub of finance and insurance, and Binghamton graduates can trust the university’s connections and reputation to carry them far.
The University of Pittsburgh dates back to the days after the American Revolution, to a school founded on what was then the frontier in 1787. Private until 1966, Pitt is part of the Commonwealth System of Higher Education and one of the most formative influences on Pittsburgh’s government, business, and education. Pitt is widely recognized as one of the foremost public research universities in the nation, earning U.S. News & World Report ranking as a top 30 public university. The Princeton Review also names Pitt a best value, thanks to its combination of quality and return on investment.
The Department of Mathematics offers Pitt’s BS in Actuarial Mathematics, an interdisciplinary program focused on advanced mathematics, statistics, finance, and business. The SOA and CAS approved curriculum prepare students for careers as actuarial analysts, or for further schooling in finance and economics, or for MBA programs. Students also learn directly from working professionals in the actuarial field, with seminars and research in real-world issues. Pitt’s reputation throughout the northeast gives students an advantage on the job market and a strong entry into their careers.
The University of Iowa and the state of Iowa made each other. Founded in the same year that Iowa became a state (1847), the flagship public research university tamed the frontier and built a foundation for growth and development. From being the first college to admit men and women of all races, to current innovations in fields ranging from hydraulics to public health, the University of Iowa is proudly, always ahead of the curve. UI is ranked a top 50 national public university by U.S. News & World Report, and one of the National Science Foundation’s top universities for research expenditure.
UI’s Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science offers the University of Iowa BS in Actuarial Science degree program. This interdisciplinary program is a model of the form, combining mathematics and statistics with the most current business and finance insights. Named a Center of Actuarial Excellence by the SOA, Iowa’s Statistics and Actuarial Science Department is more than 100 years old, one of the two oldest in the nation, and has literally helped set the standard for education in actuarial science. Students are not only prepared for the actuarial exams, but for the support of a wide community of alumni.
The Texas capital city of Austin has been known for innovation and eccentricity just about as long as there’s been an Austin, but Austin’s transformation in the 21st century has been unprecedented. As the home of the state’s flagship public research university, the University of Texas, Austin has been a center of culture and learning since 1881. UT’s top-ranked STEM programs and research centers, however, have also helped make Austin a center for tech entrepreneurship. That influence, along with Public Ivy recognition and top-tier public university ranking, makes UT Austin a force.
UT Austin’s BS in Mathematics-Actuarial Science degree program plugs graduates straight into one of the strongest tech and startup job markets in the nation. The Department of Mathematics offers an interdisciplinary curriculum designed around current actuarial science standards, from insurance to finance. This actuarial science degree program, a mathematics concentration, brings math and statistics together with economics and business. With UT Austin’s reputation, not just in Texas but worldwide, graduates can trust their actuarial science degree to take them far.
It’s hard to get more prestigious than the University of Pennsylvania. Founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1740, UPenn is one of just 9 Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution. While other colleges of the day were built on religion and classical studies, Penn was the first to incorporate modern scientific learning and public service. That spirit never left UPenn, and the university has continued to innovate and drive higher education for nearly three centuries now. In particular, the Wharton School of Business – the first school of its kind – continues to stand as one of the most respected and influential in the world.
The University of Pennsylvania Actuarial Science degree program is also a model of its kind. Offered by the Wharton School’s Department of Statistics, the actuarial science program is built around the demands of modern-day actuarial analysis and the requirement of the actuarial exams. A BS in Mathematics with an actuarial science concentration also gives students the requirements to enter an MBA program, for those who want to take their actuarial skills into management or entrepreneurship. Few names are as trusted in business as UPenn and the Wharton School of Business.
Purdue University was one of the earliest land-grant universities, founded in 1869 as a public agriculture and mechanical college. With that foundation in the precursors to biology and engineering, Purdue was set to grow into one of the nation’s foremost STEM institutions. From pharmacy and veterinary medicine to aviation and aerospace, Purdue has been at the forefront of research and discovery. Today, Purdue is ranked one of the most innovative universities in the world by U.S. News & World Report, as well as one of the top 20 public universities nationally.
Purdue’s Actuarial Science degree program is offered by the Mathematics Department and Statistics Department, working together to provide a full undergraduate degree. Students are prepared for the first 5 SOA actuarial exams, like many other actuarial science programs, but Purdue’s program is one of the most unusual in the nation. Students earn a double major – actuarial science and statistics – as well as a minor in management. That broadness and depth means students can confidently enter just about any field or industry where actuarial analysis and statistics are valued.
The flagship of the University of Michigan system, the University of Michigan dates back to Michigan’s territory era, when it was founded in 1817. In two centuries, UM has grown into one of the Midwest’s most prominent public research institutions, and the center of STEM and professional education in Michigan. UM is the heart of medicine, law, engineering, and business, and has been named a Public Ivy. U.S. News & World Report ranks UM as a top 30 national university, with many departments – including mathematics – ranked in the top 10 nationally among their programs.
The University of Michigan Actuarial Mathematics degree program comes from the Department of Mathematics, and is designed around the mathematical and statistical demands of the insurance industry. The program is not only intended to prepare students for SOA/CAS actuarial exams; it is also built for career and professional development. Student internships are supported and highly encouraged, with UM’s wide set of partners. As one of the Midwest’s top choices for STEM and business, the University of Michigan is one of the strongest names on the marketplace, giving graduates a real advantage as they enter their careers.
Alabama’s most prestigious and prominent public research institution, Auburn University is central to professional education and research in the Deep South. Auburn was founded as a private school in 1856, but its real history begins when it became Alabama’s public land-grant university in 1871. Today, Auburn has built on its foundation in agriculture and engineering to become Alabama’s top STEM and business university. A world-class land, sea, and space-grant institution, Auburn is ranked one of the top 50 public universities in the nation by U.S. News & World Report.
Auburn’s excellent in mathematics and business come together in the Auburn University BS in Mathematics-Actuarial Science degree program. This specialization prepares math majors for careers as actuarial analysts, giving students a thorough grounding in the math, statistics, finance, technology, and other elements of modern actuarial science. Students also benefit from the excellent reputation of Auburn, with a wide alumni network and a host of industry partners to give students an entry into their careers.
Though the University of California, Santa Barbara was founded in 1891 as a normal school (a teacher-training program), the institution was completely transformed in 1944. In that year, UCSB became part of the University of California system and began a mission to educate returning WWII veterans. The new focus on practical education helped grow UCSB from a small teachers college into a major research university, well known for STEM programs in technology and engineering. UCSB is noted as a Public Ivy, and has been ranked in the top 50 national universities by U.S. News & World Report.
The Department of Statistics and Applied Probability offers the UC Santa Barbara BS in Actuarial Science degree program. The program is designed to prepare students for their careers as actuaries, from passing the actuarial exams and earning certifications to joining any of the many actuarial societies (like the SOA and the CAS). Students have the opportunity to work with professional actuaries to develop an independent research project and see the real world of actuarial analysis. All of this, plus UC Santa Barbara’s exceptional reputation, gives graduates faith that their degrees will land them solid careers.
Drake University was a revolutionary institution from its very beginning, teaching practical education in the applied sciences and professional studies alongside the traditional liberal arts. Named for one of its co-founders, Francis Marion Drake, Drake University began in 1881, though its law school – one of the oldest in the nation – goes back to 1865. Drake’s focus on leadership is written into its mission and its curriculum, including service learning, interdisciplinary study, and engagement with the community. Drake is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the top 5 regional universities in the Midwest.
The Drake University Actuarial Science degree program offers students all of Drake’s strengths in one of the nation’s most in-demand and rewarding careers. Students benefit from a nationally-recognized program, named a Center of Actuarial Excellence by the SOA and taught by experts with real-world experience in the field. Drake’s reputation also gives students access to internships at some of the most successful insurance and finance firms in the world, as well as a strong foot forward on the job market.
Bradley University may be the only private research university in the world that began with a small watchmaking school, but that was just the first step in forming one of the Midwest’s top STEM universities. From its founding in 1897, Bradley has prepared the people of Illinois for professional success, especially those usually underrepresented in higher education. Today, Bradley is known for business, technology, and other innovative programs (including one of the first entrepreneurship schools in the US), and is ranked among the top 10 regional universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report.
The Actuarial Science degree at Bradley University is a top-notch, interdisciplinary degree program that combines business and mathematics for a thorough career preparation. Designed by the School of Business and the Department of Mathematics, the actuarial science program provides a low student:faculty ratio, strong mentorship, and AACSB accreditation in both business and accounting. Bradley’s reputation for excellence, and deep relationships within industry, means graduates have no fear of their degree letting them down.
The University of Missouri is a literally pioneering institution – the first public university founded, in 1839, west of the Mississippi River. Mizzou is the center of scientific research and professional education for Missouri, and one of the most influential land-grant universities in the Midwest. Whether in medicine or law, nuclear engineering or journalism, the University of Missouri has been at the forefront of discoveries and central to Missouri’s leadership. The University of Missouri is ranked among the top 60 national public universities, and a member of the Association of American Universities.
The Department of Mathematics offers the University of Missouri Actuarial Science degree program, a BS in Mathematics with a concentration in actuarial and financial mathematics. This specialized program focuses primarily on the use of actuarial analysis for finance and banking. Students learn a well-rounded career preparation not only in the mathematics and technology of actuarial science, but management, teamwork, and leadership for career success. Mizzou’s actuarial science graduates are prepared for the SOA/CAS actuarial exams, as well as the modern job market.
Butler University was one of the first colleges in the US to admit both men and women, and people of all races, when it was founded in 1855. Butler’s founder, abolitionist Ovid Butler, built the university on the belief that practical education for all was the key to the future, and Butler University has pursued that mission ever since. Today, Butler is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as the #2 best regional university in the Midwest, confirming a reputation for quality education, value, and opportunity.
Butler University’s Actuarial Science degree program is designed by the Department of Mathematics, Statistics, and Actuarial Science. Because the department is built around statistics and actuarial sciences, students get a specialized education that prepares them for a career as an actuary much more than a generalized math or statistics degree. Students are prepared for the actuarial exams and for the real, day-to-day work of an actuary, including leadership and teamwork. Plus, Butler’s strong reputation in the Midwest, and strong networking connections, help actuarial science graduates step into their careers way ahead of their job market competition.
Connecticut’s flagship public research university, and a leading land, sea, and space-grant institution, the University of Connecticut is one of the finest universities in its class. Founded in 1881, UConn was designed to be a model of public higher education, focused on practical education in agriculture and mechanical engineering. That set the stage for UConn to grow into one of the most important public research universities in New England, an acclaimed Public Ivy, and one of U.S. News & World Report’s top 20 national public universities.
UConn’s Actuarial Science degree program is just as excellent, and just as influential, as the university’s reputation would suggest. UConn’s program is recognized by the SOA as a Center of Actuarial Excellence, and the degree is one of only a few public actuarial science programs in New England. That status has allowed the actuarial program to make strong connections to the insurance and finance industries of New England and the Northeast, giving students access to internships and career opportunities. All New England students also have the chance to earn their degree for in-state tuition, making UConn’s actuarial science program one of the best investments in the field.
Founded in 1882 by members of the Dutch Reformed Church in Iowa, Northwestern College is a small, Christian liberal arts college known for its outreach and student support. While Northwestern was originally an academy designed to prepare young people for ministry and college, the college has grown into a full, 4-year college with some graduate degrees. In recent years, Northwestern has become particularly known for its online degree programs, and has earned recognition from U.S. News & World Report as one of the top 10 regional colleges in the Midwest.
The Northwestern College Actuarial Science degree program is one of the top programs of its kind in Iowa. Northwestern is one of only a handful of Christian colleges rated as an Advanced Undergraduate curriculum by the SOA, preparing students to pass the first three actuarial exams by graduation, and potentially even more. With its small student body and low student:faculty ratio, Northwestern is also known for its student support, with mentorship and spiritual guidance prioritized throughout the college. Students can trust that Northwestern will prepare them for their careers, as well as for lives of service and responsibility.
Michigan State University is one of the most important and influential institutions in the history of American higher education. Founded in 1855 as an agriculture and mechanical school, MSU was the inspiration for the Morrill Land-Grant Act, the federal act that spread the MSU model across the US. These universities laid the foundation for modern STEM education, from biology to engineering, and it all began with Michigan State. Today, MSU is a leader not only in STEM, but in business, finance, and related fields like packaging and supply chain management, and is ranked in the top 25 public universities nationally by U.S. News & World Report.
MSU’s excellence in the technical aspects of industry feed the Michigan State Actuarial Science degree program. MSU’s actuarial science program came together officially in 2012, when the Department of Mathematics and the Department of Statistics came together to turn a math specialization into a full-fledged degree program. Today, MSU’s program has become one of the most respected in the nation, attracting industry partners for internships, conferences, and other forms of student support. Graduates of the MSU AS program can trust their degree to attract the right kind of attention from employers.
Indiana was still frontier in 1837, when Methodist pioneers around central Indiana donated money to convince the church to found a college in Greencastle. The area had been civilized by traveling Methodist preachers called circuit riders, so the infrastructure was there to establish a Christian liberal arts college. Today, DePauw is recognized as one of the top colleges of its kind in the Midwest, and is regularly ranked by U.S. News & World Report as a top national liberal arts college, as well as a best value. DePauw is particularly known for business and leadership, ranked in the top 10 in its class for graduating future business executives.
DePauw’s Actuarial Science degree program focuses on the needs of the insurance and finance industries. The actuarial courses at DePauw prepare students for the actuarial exams, as well as offering professional development with seminars and courses that provide VEE credits. While Indiana offers numerous opportunities for internships in the actuarial field, DePauw’s wide alumni base and strong relationships in business give students and graduates an added advantage. With DePauw’s reputation, graduates of the actuarial science program can feel confident in their future.
Bentley University is one of the most respected and trusted business-centered universities in the north, with U.S. News & World Report #2 ranking for best regional university. Bentley’s founder, professor Harry C. Bentley, brought the expertise he gained as a professor at Boston University and other Boston-area institutions to the accounting school he founded in 1917. With that pedigree, and access to the financial institutions of Boston, Bentley University grew into a top-tier business school. Today, Bentley is known for excellence and innovation, from finance and management to accounting and actuarial science.
Bentley’s Actuarial Science degree is an exemplary program that demonstrates the best that an actuarial science degree can be. The Bentley program combines math and statistical skills with a thorough education in business and finance; in fact, all actuarial science majors are required to double-major or minor in business. In addition, students are prepared for the first 4 actuarial exams, as well as earning VEE credits. Bentley’s actuarial science students also benefit from Bentley’s relationships in nearby Boston, one of the nation’s financial hubs, for internships and employment.
Founded in 1963 in Orlando, FL, the University of Central Florida is Florida’s space-age university, intended to educate NASA’s engineers, technicians, and managers. That foundation in the most current science and technology made UCF a destination, and as the university added programs in other disciplines, UCF grew quickly. So quickly, in fact, that the University of Central Florida is now known for the largest on-campus student body in the US. Today, UCF is recognized as one of U.S. News & World Report’s most innovative universities, as well as a best value and a leader in STEM and business.
UCF’s BS in Actuarial Science degree program gains its strength from one of the nation’s foremost mathematics schools, forged in the space race. Offered by the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, the BS in Actuarial Science is designed to be closely related to the Statistics BS, so students can conveniently double-major. The ASBS is intended to satisfy all VEE requirements for the SOA, and prepare students to pass the first five SOA and first 4 CAS actuarial exams by graduation, giving graduates a major step ahead of their job market competition.
Founded in 1900 by philanthropist and education reformer Andrew Carnegie – whose commitment to learning is evident in the many libraries and schools named for him – Carnegie Mellon University is one of the most prestigious institutions of its kind. Carnegie Mellon’s original purpose was to provide polytechnic education for the working class of Pittsburgh, and the university’s diversity and access remain its strengths. Carnegie Mellon is consistently ranked one of U.S. News & World Report’s top 25 national universities, and is particularly known for business and technology.
The Carnegie Mellon Actuarial Science program offers students two paths to an actuarial science career. Students may double major in Statistics and Business Administration, earning a degree from the Department of Mathematics and the award-winning Tepper School of Business. Alternately, students may major in Statistics and minor in Business, which can also prepare students for the actuarial exams. With Carnegie Mellon’s reputation throughout the north and the US, graduates may have their pick of career paths, no matter which way they earn their credentials.
Few institutions are as central to the development of New York into a global metropolis as New York University. Founded in 1831 in Greenwich Village, NYU helped form that area into New York’s cultural hub, while NYU’s professional programs transformed business, marketing, law, public policy, and nearly every other discipline central to urban life. In particular, the Stern School of Business is one of the largest influences on the business life of New York, especially the financial and banking industries. One of the world’s oldest business school, Stern is regularly ranked a top 10 global b-school.
NYU’s Actuarial Science degree program comes from the world-renowned Stern School, as a concentration in the Stern business bachelor’s degree. Housed in the business school, NYU’s actuarial science program is not only focused on mathematics and statistics, but on the most current research and knowledge in management, finance, accounting, and other business topics. Graduates from NYU’s actuarial science program go out into the world’s foremost job market for business, supplied with a name that is trusted everywhere, and all the connections that NYU can offer.
Ohio Northern University had its origins in a small normal school founded in 1871. ONU’s founder, Henry Solomon Lehr, envisioned a modern institution that would bring practical education to an area that was still largely rural frontier. However, ONU took a new turn in 1899 when the Methodist Church bought the college. Focusing on practical education for the new century, ONU became known for its professional programs in areas like business and technology. Eventually, ONU earned recognition as a top regional college in the Midwest from publications like U.S. News & World Report.
With its reputation in business, the ONU Actuarial Science degree program is a natural concentration for the university. The program from Ohio Northern brings together the technical skills of math and statistics with the business and technology necessary for modern actuarial science. Students get a wealth of hands-on research opportunity in the field, and ONU’s mentorship is strong and supportive. Students take on internships, present their research at conferences, and are prepared for the actuarial exams, going into their careers with confidence.
Valparaiso University was founded in 1859 as a grassroots effort from the people of Valparaiso, IN, who raised donations for the Methodist Church to establish a college in the area. While that initial college did not survive the Civil War, it was revived in 1873 as a teacher training and business school. That foundation in practical, professional-oriented education continued after the school was acquired by the Lutheran Church in 1925. Today, Valparaiso is recognized nationwide for their business, engineering, and health sciences programs, and has long been ranked by U.S. News & World Report among the top 10 regional universities in the Midwest.
Valparaiso’s BS in Actuarial Science degree program builds on some of the university’s greatest strengths, combining mathematics and statistics with business and technology. Offered by the Mathematics & Computer Science Department, the Actuarial Science BS gives students a full understanding of the mechanics of actuarial analysis, as well as a knowledge of finance and economics. This combination gives students all they need to pass the actuarial exams and enter their career, or to go on to MBA programs. Valparaiso has proudly sent graduates to MBA programs at some of the most prestigious research universities in the nation, and placed graduates in rewarding jobs.
Louisiana State University dates back to a military academy founded in 1853, but LSU, as we know it today, began in 1874, when Louisiana designated the college as its land-grant university. LSU’s mission from that time forward was dedicated to providing practical applied science and professional education, bringing the struggling post-Civil War state into the modern age. Today, LSU continues that tradition, offering some of the strongest STEM programs in the Deep South as a land, sea, and space-grant institution. LSU is regularly ranked among the best public research universities in the nation.
LSU’s Actuarial Science degree program underscores LSU’s expertise in mathematics and business, combining the Department of mathematics with finance and economics. The actuarial science concentration within the BS in Mathematics gives students all they need to begin a rewarding career as an actuary, whether in insurance, healthcare, government, or other fields. LSU also puts professional development and career success at the forefront, providing students with support in finding internships, building job market skills, and networking with potential employers. The Actuarial Science program demonstrates why LSU has been a Deep South leader for generations.
Ohio University was first chartered in 1787, when the Ohio Territory represented the hopes and dreams of the new United States to expand westward. Its actual founding in 1804 made it one of the first public universities in the new nation, and Athens, OH, became a center for learning and culture in the Midwest. Today, OU is still one of the key components in Ohio’s professional, educational, and business life, ranked in the top 100 national public universities by U.S. News & World Report, and has regularly been recognized as a value. From STEM to business, Ohio University is known for educating Ohio’s leaders.
The Ohio University BS in Actuarial Science comes from the Department of Mathematics, but this interdisciplinary program is also strongly connected to business. Only two further courses beyond the actuarial major are required for a business or a finance minor, an easy way for students to enhance their job market value. Students in the actuarial science program are prepared to pass at least one actuarial exam before graduation, and potentially more, giving them a further advantage. Ohio University is deeply connected throughout Ohio, providing students with ample entry into internships and careers.
Brooklyn College, part of the City University of New York system, dates back to 1910, when an extension campus of the city’s teachers college was opened in Brooklyn. Brooklyn College became complete when that City College merged with the all-women Hunter College to create New York City’s first coed college. From that beginning, Brooklyn College earned a reputation for access and outreach, building one of the most diverse student bodies in the nation (more than two-thirds coming from a minority or international background). Brooklyn College is ranked among the top regional colleges by the Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report.
The Brooklyn College BS in Actuarial Mathematics degree program is an interdisciplinary program from the Mathematics Department that incorporates math, statistics, economics, and business. Brooklyn College’s reputation for social mobility shows through in the actuarial mathematics degree, which prepares students thoroughly for one of the most rewarding careers in the nation. New York, as the center of business and finance for the US, and one of the most important in the world, gives Brooklyn College’s graduates a smooth course into the success on a demanding job market.
Founded in 1863 as one of the first Morrill Land-Grant Act colleges, the University of Massachusetts is New England’s premier public research university. From its early focus on agriculture and mechanical engineering, like all land-grant colleges, UMass developed into one of the nation’s top STEM and professional institutions. UMass’s impact on Massachusetts rivals any of its Ivy League and polytechnic counterparts, and much of New England’s leadership in business, government, research, and education hails from UMass. The largest public university in New England, UMass is also ranked as one of the 30 best public universities in the nation.
The UMass Actuarial Science degree program comes from the Mathematics and Statistics Department. This highly-connected, well-developed interdisciplinary program is plugged into the SOA and the CAS, with liaisons to the CAS and SOA recognition – one of only three colleges in Massachusetts. Students in the UMass actuarial science program are not only prepared for the first three SOA actuarial exams, but earn VEE credits as well. UMass’ reputation in New England gives students no shortage of opportunities for internships, research, and career placement, whether in Massachusetts or beyond.
Dordt College was founded in 1953 as a small junior college, supported by the Christian Reformed Church in Iowa, Minnesota, and South Dakota. Drawing on the Dutch Reformed tradition of many of the area’s immigrant settlers, Dordt College was established as an explicitly Christian, Reformed institution. Dordt’s curriculum is rooted in biblical faith and designed to prepare Christian students to bring moral responsibility and service to their professions. Dordt has been ranked by U.S. News & World Report among the top 10 regional colleges in the Midwest.
The Dordt College Actuarial Science degree program is a unique approach to actuarial science that builds on Dordt’s strengths and character. The actuarial science program prepares students for their careers, from statistical modeling to data management, but also incorporates Christian ethics and worldview into the field of risk management. Between technical excellence and Dordt’s strong connections in the industry, Dordt students have a perfect passing rate for the actuarial exams, and 100% job placement in recent years. That makes Dordt College one of the Midwest’s most promising, most reliable actuarial science centers.
Queens College is the kind of institution that only New York could produce, defined by excellence, access, and diversity. Dating back to an academy founded in 1837 – when Flushing, Queens was rural – Queens College has developed along with its neighborhood and borough. After a bold and influential experiment with open admission in the 1970s, Queens College became known as one of the most diverse colleges in the nation, and today, African-American, Hispanic, and Asian-American students make up more than two-thirds of the student body. U.S. News & World Report recognition as a top 50 regional college demonstrates Queens’ quality.
The Queens College BBA in Actuarial Studies degree program is one of the strongest business-related actuarial science programs in the northeast. While the program is strong in mathematics and statistics, Queens actuarial majors are also business majors, with the foundation in management and entrepreneurship that will help them progress in their careers. Queens College has always been known for its ability to bring social mobility to its students, and the BBA in Actuarial Studies is a prime example.
The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has been critical to STEM research and professional education in the Midwest since 1869, when it was founded as a land-grant agricultural and mechanical science college. The state’s flagship university, UNL built on its foundation to become a pioneer in ecology, biology and bioengineering, and business. Long ranked a best value and a top national public university by U.S. News & World Report, no institution educates more of Nebraska’s leaders than NU.
The University of Nebraska Actuarial Science degree program is offered by the College of Business, one of the nation’s top 10 undergraduate business schools according to U.S. News. With the support of the Department of Finance, the actuarial science program is steeped in mathematics and statistics, and prepares students for careers in the finance and insurance industries. Students are set up for the first 5 SOA actuarial exams, and earn VEE credits as well, starting UNL actuarial science graduates off on the right foot when they hit the job market – or when employers come to them.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute was one of the illustrious schools that introduced the European polytechnic education model to the US in the 19th century. Founded in 1865, WPI’s focus on science, industry, and technology was a precursor to modern STEM and professional education. That vision and model combined traditional classrooms with labs and active research and built the foundation that would spread across higher education. Today WPI is a top-tier university recognized by Forbes and Businessweek for a return on investment that beats many of its most prestigious rivals.
WPI’s BS in Actuarial Mathematics degree program combines real-world research with preparation for the actuarial exams. For many years, WPI has been a leader in undergraduate research, and that is no less true for actuarial science students, who get to experience the real work of actuarial analysts. Highly motivated students can also add courses to earn an MS in Financial Mathematics or Applied Statistics in just 5 years. With Worcester Polytechnic’s national reputation in math and business, graduates have all they need for a rewarding career.
Founded in 1938, when the nation was still stabilizing after the Great Depression, Siena College began as an extension campus of St. Bonaventure College. Siena was established in the Albany suburb of Loudonville to provide opportunity for students in the capital area. While WWII hit the college hard, it also led to the admission of women, and built programs for nontraditional students that helped Siena develop into the innovative college it is today. With the low student:faculty ratio of a small liberal arts college, and the excellence of Catholic, Franciscan education, Siena College is a recognized and trusted name throughout New York and the Northeast.
Siena College’s Actuarial Science degree program combines all of the benefits of a small liberal arts college – including small classes, personal attention, and mentorship – with up-to-date instruction in math, statistics, economics, and finance. Students earn VEE credits for the SOA and CAS requirements, and are prepared for the actuarial exams by experienced actuarial science practitioners and educators. In addition, Siena’s location in New York’s capital region gives graduates access to business, finance, government, and insurance, with a strong reputation to take them onto the job market.
Arizona State University began humbly as a normal school in 1885, training teachers for the schools of the Arizona Territory, but ASU has little reason to be humble today. With the highest level of Carnegie Foundation research classification, and U.S. News & World Report ranking as the most innovative university in the nation, Arizona State is a 21st-century icon. As a comprehensive, public, urban research university, ASU has been transformative in online education, professional studies, STEM research, and American culture, and earned a global reputation for accessibility and acceptance.
The Arizona State BS in Actuarial Science degree program prepares students for a satisfying career in the actuarial profession. With a combination of mathematics and finance, from the School of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences, ASU is dedicated to bringing out talents and developing skills. ASU has been preparing professionals for the insurance and finance industries for more than two decades, not just with education, but by building relationships with industry partners. Students also have access to working professionals in the field for advising leading up to the actuarial exams, giving them a real-world advantage.
The largest private university in Minnesota, the University of St. Thomas is a Catholic institution in the Twin Cities. Founded in 1885 by the Minneapolis-St. Paul archbishop, St. Thomas was originally a Catholic seminary for aspiring priests, but spun off into an independent liberal arts college in less than a decade. Today, the University of St. Thomas is a comprehensive, urban liberal arts university, with nearly 100 undergraduate majors and more than 60 graduate degrees, and a student body of over 10,000. Ranked as a top-tier national university, and a best value, by U.S. News & World Report, the University of St. Thomas is one of Minnesota’s most trusted names.
The University of St. Thomas Actuarial Science degree program has been going strong for 20 years, and is one of the few named a Center of Actuarial Excellence by the SOA. The actuarial program at St. Thomas brings together mathematics and business with communication, management, and teamwork to prepare students for the real world of work as an actuary. Students not only develop the highest level of mathematical and statistical skills, but also benefit from the soft skills or St. Thomas’ liberal arts tradition. The result is a satisfying hybrid that gives graduates a unique position on the job market.
Maine’s first normal school was founded in 1864 to train teachers for the state’s public school system; one hundred years later, the teachers college became part of the University of Maine system as UMaine Farmington. Today, UMF is one of Maine’s most important public universities, bringing professional education in areas ranging from health sciences and education to business. UMF ranks as a top 10 regional university for the North, according to U.S. News & World Report, as well as a best value.
The UMaine Farmington Actuarial Science degree program is designed for the demands of a modern actuary career. Consisting of a BA in Interdisciplinary Studies with an actuarial science concentration, the UMF actuarial program pulls together mathematics, economics, and business for a full preparation. An Actuarial Advisory Board made up of active, practicing actuaries keeps the program current and helps students establish contacts in the field that pays off in internships and job opportunities. UMF is recognized throughout New England, and students from Massachusetts, Vermont, and Rhode Island also qualify for discounted tuition rates for added value.
Saint Joseph’s University is a respected part of the educational and cultural life of Philadelphia, a private, Catholic university founded in 1853. With its Jesuit tradition, Saint Joseph’s has been known for educational rigor and dedication to the Church since its earliest days, when it began offering higher education opportunity to a local student body in suburban Philadelphia. Today, Saint Joseph’s is recognized as one of the dozen best regional universities in the North by U.S. News & World Report. Saint Joseph’s is particularly known for the Haub School of Business, one of the top-ranked b-schools in the nation, and for its deep connections to the industry and government of Philadelphia through cooperative education programs and internships.
Saint Joseph’s BS in Actuarial Science degree program gives students one of the best possible ways to enter the actuarial field. A collaboration between the College of Arts & Sciences and the Haub School of Business, the actuarial science program provides VEE credits and preparation for the actuarial exams. Students also have the opportunity to shadow a working actuary, and develop connections that will benefit them when they look for internships and work. As a Catholic university, Saint Joseph’s also emphasizes ethics and professional responsibility, making Saint Joseph’s a great way for new actuaries to make a difference.
Illinois’ oldest public university – founded in 1857, a decade before the University of Illinois – Illinois State University began as the state’s first normal school, training teachers for the public school system. Since becoming a state university in 1965, ISU has been a key regional educator, preparing traditional-aged students, working adults, and career-changing professionals in fields ranging from education to nursing to business. ISU is ranked by U.S. News & World Report as a top 100 public university at the national level.
The Actuarial Science degree program at ISU focuses on the mathematics needed to pass the demanding actuarial exams offered by the SOA and the CAS. Along with math and statistics, the ISU actuarial science program helps students develop their communication, technology, managerial, and leadership skills for work as actuaries. Students cover all they need for the first 5 SOA actuarial exams while earning VEE credits and developing their professional reputation. With a reputation for value and ROI, Illinois State is a smart choice for tomorrow’s actuaries.
Otterbein University, a small, Christian liberal arts university in Westerville, OH, was founded by the United Brethren in Christ, a denomination that today belongs to the United Methodist Church. While Otterbein excels in the areas traditionally associated with the liberal arts college, in recent years the university has grown considerably, adding highly regarded professional programs in areas like engineering and business. A growing reputation for STEM and professional studies has led Otterbein to a new-found national recognition, including U.S. News & World Report ranking as a top 20 regional university for the Midwest.
Otterbein’s BS in Actuarial Science degree program is the only actuarial science program offered by a private university in Ohio. Recognized as an Advanced Undergraduate Curriculum by the SOA/CAS, Otterbein’s program gives students the close personal attention and support of a small private university, and the highest level of actuarial education. Students are prepared for the first three actuarial exams, as well as portions of the fourth, along with a thorough grounding in math and statistics for finance and insurance. Otterbein is a university with a reputation on the rise, and the Actuarial Science BS shows why
The University at Albany was New York’s first public college, founded in 1844 to train school teachers in New York’s capital city. As part of the SUNY system, Albany is one of the most acclaimed public universities in the northeast. And as a deeply connected part of the life and culture of the capital, SUNY Albany is known for its expertise in the professional and technical areas that are central to modern urban life. That includes some of the strongest business programs in the region. In addition to recognition as one of the region’s top public universities, the University at Albany has been widely named as best value.
The University at Albany Actuarial and Mathematical Sciences degree program prepare students for careers in actuarial science, or for further graduate schooling. With a curriculum approved by the SOA and CAS, and all the instruction students need to pass the actuarial exams, Albany helps future actuaries determine their future. Albany’s connections to the industry and government of New York’s capital, and the highly respected reputation the university has throughout New York, gives graduates all they need to make the most of their careers.