How Do I Become an Investment Actuary?

Jennifer Leigh
Jennifer Leigh
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Woman posing

In order to become an investment actuary, it is necessary to obtain education and experience in the fields of mathematics and finance. A bachelor's degree in actuarial science, as well as a degree or classes in finance, provides the foundation needed to enter into the field as an entry-level employee. Experience in the field can be obtained through internship positions while in school, as well as through on-the-job training once employed in a professional position. Continuing education is needed once you become an investment actuary in order to stay current with technology and trends in the investment marketplace.

If you want to become an investment actuary, you need to receive an education in the area of actuarial science as well as in finance or business. Many colleges and universities offer four-year bachelor's degrees in actuarial science, in which courses are offered in mathematics, statistics, and economics. In addition, to work specifically with investments you need to have a clear understanding of finance, so an additional bachelor's degree in business with an emphasis in finance is recommended. This is a stringent combination that requires a lot of time spent studying and a high level of mathematical skill to succeed and obtain the degrees.

Most companies prefer to hire individuals who have experience in the field, so it is important to try to obtain as much as possible while in school. This can happen through finding an internship that focuses on investment actuaries, though any experience working as an actuary is helpful. In an internship, you will learn more about what it takes to become an investment actuary, including risk management, maximizing investment profits, and how to use advanced mathematics when determining the best investments. Internship programs are generally unpaid, but can provide you with an edge when getting hired in a competitive industry.

Many positions offer on-the-job training to entry-level associates to become an investment actuary. Mentorship programs are offered, where you work with an experienced actuary in order to learn how things are done at an organization. After you have learned basic tasks of the job, such as data preparation, it is possible to advance to supervisory and research positions. Continued education is often required in order to stay certified in the field. It is important to stay knowledgeable about the newest happenings in the field of investments in order to be continually successful at the job.

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