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During a typical day, students work in groups to learn some math, finance, economics, and relevant software to investigate an actuarial problem. The primary emphasis is on problem solving and effective communication. On most days, an actuary visits the class to discuss her/his job, and in the evenings, students participate in supervised activities with curfew at 10 p.m.
Daily activities are organized around a specific actuarial problem. Below is the schedule for a day where students investigate payment streams and the time value of money.
8–9 a.m. - Breakfast in the Allan W. Mund College Center
9–9:15 a.m. - Description of Problem (time value of money)
When your grandparents were teenagers, they could buy more for $100 than you can. By making assumptions about interest rates and payment schemes, you'll learn to concretely quantify the time value of money. Along the way, you'll develop tools to allow you to compute car and house payments.
9:15–10:15 a.m. - Relevant Software (Excel)
You'll work in groups to learn some Excel fundamentals and then apply them to a novel situation. At the end of the of the hour, groups present their solutions.
10:15–10:30 a.m. - Break
10:30 a.m.–12 p.m. - Time Value of Money I
You'll review basic interest theory and then consider streams of payment and look for patterns to help value them.
12–1 p.m. - Lunch
1–2:15 p.m. - Guest Actuary
You'll hear from a working actuary about her job and what she did to prepare for it.
2:15–2:30 p.m. - Break
2:30–4 p.m. - Q&A about Actuary’s Visit/Time Value of Money II
After discussing the actuary’s visit, you'll apply your newly won Excel skills and knowledge of interest theory to develop an amortization table, with an eye toward applications where payments are contingent rather than guaranteed.