Jake Akstins studies actuarial science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is president of the university’s actuarial science club, and was selected as a 2017 CAS Trust Scholarship Winner. Jake has spent the last two summers interning at CNA and will begin working there full time after graduation.
- Why are you interested in pursuing a career in the insurance industry?
I believe in the mission of insurance – insurance is a social tool which indemnifies others to make them financially whole after experiencing a loss or accident. Insurance is a concept that allows people to help others through the insurance company which serves as a liaison. I want to help make these connections smooth and fair.
- Why did you decide to study actuarial science?
I would’ve never ended up in this field if it wasn’t for the Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy (IMSA), my high school. Here, I was exposed to professors who taught me about the power of mathematics and what you can do with it. I am very interested in diversity and inclusion and social justice, and I find ethical questions regarding pricing and reserving (quantifiable discrimination vs. more accurate pricing) to be fascinating. I am particularly interested in confounding variables.
- What advice would you give to someone interested in studying actuarial science?
Do your research, learn the lingo, and read-up on the industry. What’s a loss ratio? What’s a loss? What’s a claim? Use these questions to help you dig deeper to find your “why”. Studying to be an actuary is a lot of work, and I really, really wouldn’t recommend to do it just for the money.