CAS Profile: Rachel Hunter, FCAS

Rachel Hunter is a Career Changer.CAS Student Central Profile Rachel Hunter, FCAS

In what field or actuarial concentration do you work in now?
I most recently worked in pricing for small commercial lines.

What job did you do or industry did you work in before becoming an actuary?
During the late 90’s, I was part of the dot-com boom building websites at a handful of different startup companies.

Why did you decide to change careers and become an actuary?
Working in technology wasn’t a career choice for me as much as it was a very easy job to get at the time if you had the basic skills to do it and ability to learn more.  At first I only planned to do it for a while deciding whether to go to graduate school in some field of Biology (my undergraduate major).  In 2001, after leaving a startup in CA and moving to Seattle, WA without a job, I started looking at long-term career options.    I took an online version of the MAPP career assessment and it suggested I be either a writer, architect or actuary.  I had been considering both writer and architect but knew it would be a lot of time to get to the point of having a stable income and that both required continually selling my skills.  So I decided to take the first actuarial exam and apply to the local companies in Seattle that had actuarial entry level roles.  Within the first week on my job at Safeco insurance, I already had respect from senior executives and it was such a welcome change in terms of culture  from my technology jobs.

What advice do you have for others who are considering a similar career change?
The hardest part of the change for me was exams.  Be ready to set progress goals for yourself and try to find a study group to keep you on track.

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