"The Society of Future Actuaries" (SOFA) formed by UB students

Photo: UB SOFA members in New York, April 2017

Photo: UB SOFA members in New York, April 2017

Published December 5, 2017

Founded by UB students interested in actuarial careers, "The Society of Future Actuaries" (SOFA) is now a club with roughly half of the membership interested in general data analytics.

The club name is based on the Society of Actuaries, a professional organization for actuaries based in North America. Just as the goals of the SOA include providing primary and continuing education for students and practicing actuaries, the goals of SOFA include providing guidance/general career development for those at the beginning of their careers.

Workshops are organized around project-based tutorials

Club meetings are often combined with workshops on topics tailored to the interests of the membership.  Past workshops have included introductory-level programming in SAS (Statistical Analysis System), SQL (Structured Query Language), Excel (spreadsheet), and Python (the popular high-level programming language).

SOFA workshops specifically designed to prepare students for actuarial exams have been organized around project-based tutorials from the website, "the infinite actuary".

Highlights of last year’s club activities include a trip to Toronto for the Datathon 2016 conference in November, and a trip to New York during the spring to visit two companies, FactSet and Saatchi & Saatchi. FactSet offers access to data and analytics to analysts, portfolio managers, and investment bankers. Saatchi & Saatchi is a global communications and advertising agency network, that provides marketing analytics.

Matt Osterman, last year’s SOFA president, is currently employed by FactSet. Alex Lutz and Eric Yonda, former SOFA executive board members, are currently employed by Millman, an international, independent actuarial and consulting firm that produces economic indexes for the American healthcare and insurance markets.

The 2017-2018 SOFA club executive board consists of Brynne Colella (President), William Coates (Vice President), Cristina Golden (Public Relations), Arturo Torres (Secretary) and Joe Majdanick (Treasurer).

The club's faculty advisor last year was Professor Bernard Badzioch (Mathematics) and the present advisor is Professor Dietrich Kuhlmann (Biostatistics).

If you are interested in the SOFA club, please send email to ubsfa1@gmail.com stating that you would like to subscribe to the club mailing list.

—Article written by Professor Brian Hassard.