Then you should consider Actuarial Science. This Word document provides info on the actuarial profession to help you decide if it is right for you, and this Word document has information on the actuarial program at Penn State.
Which major MATH, STAT, or R M? The Actuarial Option (or concentration) can be found in the Risk Management Major (in the Smeal College of Business) or the Mathematics and Statistics Majors (in the Eberly College of Science). Students in all three Actuarial Options take the same Actuarial courses with each other. There are advantages to getting the Major thru Smeal, such as: Smeal students can take any STAT or MATH course, but Eberly students are not eligible for many Smeal courses. Please view this PPT Presentation from our Fall Forum for Actuarial Students on what courses to take.
Where to start MATH 140, MATH 141, or MATH 230? Are you great at calculus? View this url to decide whether to place out of Math 140 (and maybe Math 141 too). It helps to place out of Math 140 so that you can take RM 410 in your Sophomore year. That helps you pass 2 actuarial exams in your Sophomore year and get an internship. However, Smeal students need to be careful to not thereby hurt their GPA, because if it goes below 3.20 you may not be able to enter your desired Smeal major. You need to be really good at Math to do this.
What classes prepare you for Exam P (the first Actuarial exam)? It's important to take STAT 414 and RM 297 (Probability Theory) in your third semester, so you can get into RM 410 in the Spring, get an internship, learn about the actuarial profession, and pass the Society of Actuaries Exam P (on Probability Theory) in January,
General education requirements
Ways to reduce credits needed: AP and the 3-6-9 Gen Eds option
Writing/Speaking (GWS) - 9 credits
Quantification (GQ) – 6 credits
Health and Physical Activity (GHA) – 3 credits
Natural Sciences (GN) – 9 credits
Arts (GA) – 6 credits
Humanities (GH) – 6 credits
Social & Behavioral Sciences (GS) – 6 credits
United States (US) Cultures – 3 credits (pick a GA/GH/GS that is also a US)
International (IL) Cultures – 3 credits(pick a GA/GH/GS that is also a IL)
Validation by educational experience (VEE) Courses
It is important to take these courses even if not required to graduate. The VEE requirements for the actuarial profession include: Statistics 462/463, Economics 102/104, and Finance 301. For this reason, many actuarial students minor in Statistics or Economics.
Students must earn B- or better in all VEE courses (or have a 4 or 5 in the AP courses).
VEE Changes (starting July 1st, 2018)
ACCTG 211 will be required for the new VEE Accounting and Finance
Take STAT 462/463 for the current APPLIED STAT VEE by July 1st, 2018 as it will count as credit for the new Statistics for Risk Modeling exam coming out in summer 2018.
Actuarial Science courses
Actuarial Science classes are the same across majors: MATH, STAT, RM
R M 297 is an elective to take with STAT 414 to pass Exam P.
R M 410 prepare you for Exam FM.
R M 411 is offered in the spring semester only. (Exam MLC Part I)
R M 412 is offered in the fall semester only. (Exam MLC Part II)
R M 415 may only be offered in the fall. (Exam MFE)
R M 420 is offered in the spring semester only (Exam C).
RM Students: To enter your major by the end of 3rd semester, you must meet all ETM requirements (ACCTG 211, FIN 301, 3.2 GPA or better and 44+ credits at Penn State). Then you can take R M 410 in 4th semester and R M 415 in 5th semester. (This helps you pass 2 exams in your sophomore year, get an internship, and pass the MFE exam in the fall of junior year.)
STAT 483 can replace R M 415, but R M 415 is recommended, because it prepares you for MFE. (Companies look for 3 exams when hiring full-time.) Consider STAT 483, if you don't want to take R M 415 and R M 412 at the same time.
Consider a STAT minor; it only requires 2 additional classes: STAT 480 and STAT 416.