I am notorious for biting off more than I can chew. I remember over-committing myself all the way back to elementary school. I have tried to be as involved as possible during my time as an actuarial student. Through all of the commitments I have made over the past three years, I have truly grown as a person. I am writing this article to encourage Coaching Actuaries users to look beyond just the exams. This is how you will truly evolve as a person and actuary.
I have been involved in both Math Club and Actuarial Science Club since my freshmen year. Both have provided amazing opportunities to meet other students and professionals. The older students I met were tremendous resources when I needed advice on which courses to enroll in for the following semester. I learned so much about the actuarial exam process and different opportunities throughout the field. I cannot imagine what I would have done without the resources provided by the two clubs.
In addition, participating in both clubs led me to wonderful leadership opportunities. I served as President of Math Club and as Secretary and later President of Actuarial Club. I made it my goal to grow both clubs’ presence on campus in order to best benefit the members. Taking on so much in both clubs at once was definitely an example of biting off more than I could chew, but I do not regret it. I learned a lot of lessons in time management and communication that are relevant in many different professional and academic settings.
Do as I say, not as I do
Since I have been in college, I have found it really easy to go to class, not speak to anyone, and leave. This is the worst way to approach classes! Step outside your comfort zone, especially in your actuarial classes. Say hi to the person that sits next to you later in the day in economics or the person that you met the night before at an actuarial club meeting. These people could potentially become invaluable study partners for classes and ultimately for the actuarial exams.
In addition, engage with the professor during lectures. Ask questions and answer his or her questions. The more you can learn while in class, the less you will have to teach yourself later when you sit down with Coaching Actuaries to study! Go to the professor’s office hours, and work your butt off! You will end up not only getting that A, but passing the corresponding actuarial exam with flying colors! In addition, the work ethic that you build throughout your college courses will carry you through many long hours studying and working throughout your life.
When I was a freshman in high school, my social studies teacher gave me some incredible advice. He said, “You have to show up. Even if you don’t want to, you just have to show up. You never know what will come of it.” This has carried me through life-changing events over the last seven years. As an actuarial student, just taking the exams is not enough. You must show up, no matter how uncomfortable it is. Show up to class, and be engaged. Show up to an actuarial club or risk management fraternity meeting. You will eventually find what you truly love to do and the people you love to be around. Make the most of your time in college. Next thing you know, you will have to show up for interviews for internships and jobs. It may be uncomfortable at times, but it will be worth it in the end!