Do you like mathematics and statistics? An actuary profession may be what you are looking for if you like numbers and solving problems with a logical mind. You can become a specialist in various field such as life assurance, general insurance, investments and pensions.
In the life assurance field, actuary builds and use mathematical models based on statistical data to calculate the premium chargeable to policyholders. Other than that, they formulate investment strategies, design insurance products as well as estimate the amount of future claims from past data.
Those new to the job will do a lot of number crunching. As you progress, this become less and may make up only 10% to 20% of what actuaries do. You will spend more time trying to make conclusions and decisions based on numerical analysis and communicating them effectively to non-actuaries.
On the investment side, a lot of financial analysis needs to be done in order to advise shareholders and management on their corporate strategies.
You will need a degree in either Actuarial Science or Commerce and Finance. However, those with Actuarial Science degree will have a head start. It really depends on a person's interest as even accountants and engineers chose to become actuaries. Becoming a qualified actuarian is a long but rewarding journey as it can take from five to fifteen years to pass all your papers.
There are a lot of prospects for actuaries as they are not limited to working in life insurance or consulting firms. Other areas they can venture into includes investment and financial services or even lecturing. They can also become investment bankers or risk managers.
This profession will definitely keep you mentally alert as well as providing you with many challenges such as getting your point across to non-actuaries. Your remuneration will also be commensurate over time as you become more knowledgeable and experienced.
See the video of the challenges and job opportunities in actuarial science.