TU again designated as international Center of Actuarial Excellence

By Megan Bradshaw on December 5, 2018

Towson University is the sole Center of Actuarial Excellence designee in Maryland, offering students skills they can immediately apply.

Student with professor
Actuarial Science and Risk Management Program Director Min Deng (right) with a student.

Towson University has once again been named a Center of Actuarial Excellence (CAE) by the Society of Actuaries, making it one of just 32 institutions worldwide to receive the designation. 

TU’s Actuarial Science and Risk Management (ASRM) program has been designated as a center of excellence for the last five years and recently passed a rigorous, five-year review for recertification. 

Towson University's program has drawn praise for delivering quality and value to students. A TU degree in the program opens doors to a world of career opportunities in the actuarial and financial professions. Graduates are in great demand by investment banks, insurance companies and brokerage houses to assess and manage financial risk.

The program provides students a solid background in mathematics, with additional courses in accounting, computer science, economics, finance and writing for business and industry. TU's course provides preliminary requirements for students to attain professional society admissions, as well.

TU's small classes feature stellar faculty who are members of the Society of Actuaries, and provide extensive student support. TU's program dates to 1980 and was the first established in Maryland. The university's proximity to industry leaders in financial centers like Baltimore, Washington, Philadelphia and New York offer close relationships with businesses through an active advisory board.

TU is the only institution in Maryland recognized as a Center of Actuarial Excellence.

The society noted its site team was impressed with TU’s “continued dedication to its ASRM program and its students” and commended the ASRM student club and the support its members receive.

One of the reasons Ilya Usik ‘16 chose to major in math with a concentration in ASRM is because “the application is immediate.”

Usik recounts how he went home to critique his mother’s mortgage documents after attending a class on interest theory. 

“The great thing about actuarial science is you get to use the skills you learned at the university and put them into something useful,” he said. “You get to model real life using mathematics, to solve very important questions to businesses.”

Fellow alum Jessica Smith ’12 is a fellow in the Society of Actuaries and a member of the Academy of Actuaries who works as a federal health actuary.

“There is a heavy concentration on professional exam preparation in the ASRM program,” she notes. “This gave me a great head start, and I achieved my associateship a few years after graduation. Also, several actuaries came to speak to my classes and gave me an excellent idea of what I could expect my professional life to look like.” 

Smith values the advice she received as a student from professor emeritus Ohoe Kim.

“He gave me amazing advice in planning my exam progress, and deciding the professional path that was correct for me,” she says. “He was constantly encouraging and challenging me to do my best so I would be prepared for a career in actuarial science.”

This story is one of several related to President Kim Schatzel’s priorities for Towson University: TU Matters to Maryland.