Inside Scoop
Luke Roberts in front of a chalk board
Power in Numbers

“I have gained a better grasp of the research process and a lot of programming skills.” – Luke Roberts ’20

From insurance to banking to government, industries around the world need help in assessing risk. That’s where actuarial scientists step in. A new degree program at the University of Indianapolis blends analytical skills with a knack for mathematical and data science, and students like Luke Roberts ’20 are reaping the benefits.

When Roberts graduates in December 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in actuarial science, it will be a semester earlier than planned and he will be on his way to becoming an actuary. To prepare for the challenge of the Society of Actuaries exams, Roberts said he’s benefited from collaboration with the Department of Mathematical Sciences faculty.

“I’ve done multiple research projects with Dr. [Lochana] Siriwardena. I believe that experience has helped me get an offer for an actuarial internship,” said Roberts, who will start his internship at CNO in the summer of 2020.

“Luke is one of the most highly motivated students we have,” said Siriwardena, assistant professor and department chair. “He is well within his path to becoming an actuary through passing the Society of Actuaries Exams and as a result getting internship opportunities. He also did independent research studying modern data science concepts and expanding his knowledge beyond his degree program.”

Roberts, who also has minors in math, computer science, and data science, said he’s had a great experience with the program.

“The math department is pretty involved in trying to help prepare you for the first few actuarial exams and the actuarial career path,” he said. “I feel like I have gained a better grasp of the research process and a lot of programming skills.”

As co-president of Math Science Alliance, Roberts has gained experience in running a club and getting to know other UIndy students. He’s also looked beyond his own major to expand his perspective and develop valuable soft skills through an internship with the Symphony Youth Orchestra of Greater Indianapolis. 

“The SYO internship helped me gain leadership and organizational skills as I had to organize a chamber ensemble,” Roberts said.

Roberts plans to pursue an entry-level actuarial position in the insurance industry after graduating and hopes to progress through the exams to become an actuarial fellow in the long term.

What does an actuarial scientist do?

The job of an actuarial scientist is to help businesses and corporations assess and manage risk. These highly compensated professionals use analytical skills to evaluate the likelihood of future events and come up with creative ways to reduce negative outcomes. With a UIndy degree in actuarial science, you will be well prepared to start your career as an actuary.

  • 100 consistently rated one of the top jobs in the U.S.
  • Job Security: Strong starting salary that can double within the first five years
  • Industries: Insurance, private corporations, government, bank and investment firms, consultation

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