Blogs

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Authors: Ashley Thyes, Giancarlo Cimaglia, Matt Ringler Matt Ringler: As we all know, 2020 has impacted everyone. And, no matter how you slice it: this year has provided numerous opportunities for all of us to face adversity and foster strength.  For those in the actuarial science community, the recruiting process presented several novel hurdles. Our connectivity, or lack thereof, offers a good example, inasmuch as we are now newly dependent upon the virtual world for interviewing. In this new world, if our WIFI connections, webcams, Zoom, Webex or other platforms malfunctioned, a coveted job opportunity could be lost. I can, as a result, confidently ...
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CAS Elections Turnout

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“I don’t like Adams. Well, he’s gonna lose, that’s just defeatist.” Perhaps, like me, you recently heard these lyrics from Hamilton ’s “The Election of 1800” either from watching it on Disney+, or listening to the soundtrack in the car…or the shower. Perhaps, like me, it reminded you of today’s political defeatism where many people end up voting for someone they don’t actually want, either because they don’t think their candidate of choice could realistically win or because they just want to prevent someone they like even less from getting into office. And perhaps, like me, you thought of the importance of voting in elections. No? Well, that’s okay, too. But ...
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As a working mother of an overly energetic 2-year old, I wanted to share some QUICK tips on how to find balance during this pandemic (especially since now many of us are starting to study again!) Special emphasis on the word quick: since anyone needing to read this won’t have time to read more, and I won’t have time to write it. Before the tips, here is a brief background on why this is so important. Aside from the obvious lack of daycares and schools, this pandemic has also caused us to become isolated from our “village”. No more babysitters, no more play dates with friends, no more getting our energy out at the playground, no more weekends with Nana – it ...
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With the recent decision to move all Fall 2020 CAS exams to the computer-based testing format, the Candidate Liaison Committee (CLC) knows that candidates have a lot of questions and have heard a lot of rumors.  The CAS has provided  an overview of  CBT Exams Information as well as a FAQ and is updating both often to provide more information to candidates, but the CLC wanted to help candidates in our own style by busting some exam-related myths!    The myths below are separated into three categories: Myths about Cheating, Myths about COVID-19 Precautions, and Myths about CBT Exam Format.  Have another myth or question that’s not addressed?  Let ...
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Back in January, I was thrilled to have finally arrived at the point in my exam process where I was registering for the CAS Course on Professionalism (COP). Not only did it mean that I would be one step closer to earning the ACAS title, but it meant I would have the opportunity to meet and collaborate with actuaries from various companies across the country. However, as we all know, the world changed significantly between January and the June COP course dates. When it was announced that Spring exams were canceled, I knew it was only a matter of time until the COP was also formally announced as canceled. While the course was inevitably canceled, I was both relieved ...
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Over the past few months, we have all experienced COVID’s toll. As students, we have seen internships and job offers rescinded, watched on-campus professional development opportunities disappear, and have felt the periodic realization that the best four years of our lives have been placed on hold. As an incoming senior actuarial student at the University of Nebraska – Lincoln and active CAS Student Central member, I personally struggled with my new normal and felt keenly disheartened by the loss of on-campus professional development opportunities at a time when we needed them most. As time passed, I struggled to find a solution regarding how to fill this ...
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The COVID-19 Pandemic is potentially the single most transformational event to occur to the U. S. Economy since the Great Depression of the 20 th Century.  What that means for the job market and the property & casualty insurance industry remains unclear. The one certainty is that this event will change how we interact and conduct business for the foreseeable future and perhaps indefinitely. Below you will find a quick summary of what Galecki Search Associates has seen in the job market since the beginning of the crisis. Also, you will see some recommendations on how to shore up your career, and more importantly, stay motivated to advance your career ...
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In any profession, staying current with industry news is critical for career success. In my role as marketing and communications manager at the CAS, I work with insurance industry publications to place CAS members for media interviews. These same publications can be a useful tool for members of CAS Student Central to keep informed about the industry. Subscribing to daily news updates, for example, can help you to identify topics that interest you professionally, remain current with industry trends, and even gain you a leg up as you apply for internships and jobs. Luckily for you, a multitude of publications serve to keep actuarial professionals informed ...
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Last week we shared our reactions to the delay of spring CAS exams.   As you have probably seen, the CAS ultimately decided to cancel the spring sitting and offer exams 7 and 9 in the fall of 2020.  This week the Candidate Liaison Committee (CLC) would like to share more on how COVID-19 changes are impacting us and how we are adapting.  As you will see in the responses, we are all impacted in different ways by COVID-19.  We are also curious how you are handing the disruption, feel free to share your tips for working from home and managing isolation in this uncertain time in the comments section.  This week's panel consists of the following committee members ...
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Since this was posted, the CAS announced plans to cancel the spring exam sitting.   Click here to view the announcement.   The CAS recently shared its decision to postpone administration of the April 2020 CAS exam sittings.  When this announcement came out, many of us were already adjusting to work from home and practicing social distancing in our communities. For those studying for CAS exams, disruption to regular work was probably already impacting study and there were likely a range of emotions upon hearing the announcement that the CAS would postpone exams.    The Candidate Liaison Committee (CLC) would like to share how we are impacted ...
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CAS Student Central members, our thoughts and support are with you during this challenging time. To help you stay sharp and on track while home for the remainder of the semester, we’ve compiled the following list of resources to check out! Webinars on a variety of topics ranging from technical training to career advice. Here are the most recent webinar recordings: The Travelers Predictive Modeling Cooking Show How to Pass Your Actuarial Exams: Learn More Study Less A Day in the Life of a P&C Actuary Your Actuarial Job Search- Guidance on Resumes, Interviews, and Networking Blog Posts that offer perspectives ...
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My struggle with disability has been life-long, but I only received a diagnosis about five years ago just after I decided to start on the actuarial career path. It is extremely difficult to figure out how to take exams with new or worsening disabilities. Heck, it’s extremely difficult for most actuarial students to figure out how to take exams under normal circumstances! To give you an idea of why it took so long to get a diagnosis and why I am still struggling with accommodations, I will take you through my journey to diagnosis. Childhood I do not remember a day when my body didn’t hurt. I was an active child, participating in dance ...
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If you or someone you know has a disability and is struggling to pass exams, please see the main article, Managing Disability and Actuarial Exams in the Future Fellows Newsletter . My Experience with Vestibular Migraine It started with mild motion sickness, just feeling a little bit queasy after taking the bus into the city. For the first almost 30 years of my life, I loved motion! As a kid, I selfishly monopolized the tire swing every time I went to the local playground. As a teenager, I spent every summer eagerly anticipating the Nez Perce County Fair, when I could ride the Zipper for three days straight. When I passed my first actuarial ...
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I never once had the time to answer all the questions on an upper-level, handwritten CAS Exam. Initially this bothered me, but it eventually became a non-issue as I realized it was the status quo for me and that not finishing the exam did not necessarily equate to not passing the exam. By the time I earned my FCAS, I felt that I had become pretty good at making smart choices on how to spend my limited time. The methods I’m sharing below might not collectively buy you a lot of time, but they just might buy you enough to pass. Find the pen that is right for you. You should not use pencils on the written exams (in my opinion). Pens will allow you to write ...
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My name is Jack Richards, and I am a senior actuarial science student at Drake University in Des Moines, IA! After my graduation in May, I’ll be joining Deloitte Consulting as an actuarial analyst in their Human Capital practice. I have interned at a variety of different companies (Deloitte, Travelers, and Sammons Financial), and am fortunate to have experienced the P&C, Life, and Health industries! Back in high school, I wanted to explore a career that sat at the intersection of math and business, and one of my neighbors recommended that I explore the actuarial profession. I was intrigued by the high level of respect the actuarial profession has, along ...
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I am honored to be a recipient of a 2019 CAS Trust Scholarship. I was encouraged to apply by a St. Thomas grad and Travelers employee with whom I interacted with in my internships at Travelers. I immediately gained an appreciation for the prestige of the award when I read about it on casact.org and when I saw the list of previous winners. The application process was straightforward, requiring candidates to submit an application, essay, official transcript, and two letters of recommendation. I was elated when I received an email a few short months later informing me that I had been selected as a recipient of the award. I am truly humbled to be in the company ...
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The CAS’s Candidate Liaison Committee (CLC) has four new candidate representatives to share their voices and perspectives on the candidate experience with the CAS and to communicate news from the CAS to the candidate community. I’ve asked our new representatives to introduce themselves and share a little bit regarding their background, interests, and plans for a future Future Fellows article. On behalf of the CLC veterans, we are delighted to welcome Emma, Chandler, Holley, and Victor. Emma Casehart Hi everyone! I’m Emma Casehart, and I’m an Actuarial Assistant working for Allstate. I work in personal lines pricing on specialty products like condo, ...
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Last month the CAS and ACTEX Learning hosted a webinar for Student Central members entitled, “How to Pass Your Actuarial Exams: Learn More, Study Less.” The webinar featured Roy Ju, FSA, CERA, MAAA, Mike Jennings, FSA, CERA and Ken Williams FCAS, MAAA, CAS Staff Actuary. In 2015, Roy Ju broke the world record as the youngest FSA of all time (age 20). After fifteen months of testing these strategies and accelerating his own exam process (passing 2 preliminary exams, a fellowship exam, the FAP modules, and the FSA modules over this period), he partnered with Mike Jennings to share these strategies with all actuarial students. Together they wrote the book, Actuarial ...
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Application Season The application season for summer internships begins the preceding fall, typically starting in September and lasting until February. Highly competitive paid summer internships sometimes see deadlines as early as November. Acceptances generally begin rolling out in January, so it’s important not to wait until the last minute to apply. You don’t have to wait until the application information is posted for the current cycle if you want to start preparing. Looking up companies’ postings from previous years will help give you a sense of their specific timelines, required qualifications, and what the intern’s responsibilities will ...
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Fall is upon us again, and university students have been back in the classroom for a few weeks now. With the new academic year also come exciting changes to the CAS Trust Scholarship that will not only increase the awards available for college students, but also help position the CAS as the premier actuarial society for P&C insurance. The CAS Trust Scholarship committee is very impressed each year as we look at dozens of applicants that demonstrate innovative thinking, noteworthy actuarial experiences, and impressive recommendations with respect to the P&C actuarial industry. In addition, many students demonstrate great actuarial potential ...
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