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  #21  
Old 02-15-2017, 01:45 PM
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3 exams passed in 4 months, including C while working a full time job? That is impressive.
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  #22  
Old 02-15-2017, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by baanotdorky View Post
Hello! I'm new here so sorry if this isn't the right place to ask this...

I have worked a non-actuarial office job for two years now and recently decided to pursue becoming an actuary. Understanding that as a career changer I would need to find ways to stand out (and trying to follow advice already posted on this forum) I decided to complete exams as quickly as I could and since November 2016 have passed P, FM and C.

Currently, I am signed up to take MFE in March, but am wondering if it would be better to stop taking exams for a couple months and spend the time networking, practicing interview skills, and picking up a technical skill (either R or VBA). As it stands, I have used VBA, R, C++ and Stata in classes during college or on simple projects, but haven't used any of them in the past two years and wouldn't put them on my resume. The best answer might be "all of the above!" but honestly with a full time job I know that if I prepare for MFE in March there will be absolutely no time for anything else.

The short version of my question: would a fourth exam or adding a technical skill such as VBA give me a better chance at landing an interview/job offer for entry level positions?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!
I would say try studying for MFE, but use VBA to help you study. You could look at certain types of questions and challenge yourself to write a macro that would solve them. You'll be learning the concepts from the syllabus as well as learning how to automate, which is a skill that will help you in a job.
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  #23  
Old 02-15-2017, 04:37 PM
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Colonel Smoothie Colonel Smoothie is offline
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Originally Posted by mathlete824 View Post
I would say try studying for MFE, but use VBA to help you study. You could look at certain types of questions and challenge yourself to write a macro that would solve them. You'll be learning the concepts from the syllabus as well as learning how to automate, which is a skill that will help you in a job.
Or they could use VBA to automate their office job, and then use the extra time to study.
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Don't you even think about sending me your resume. I'll turn it into an origami boulder and return it to you.
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  #24  
Old 02-15-2017, 08:53 PM
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Originally Posted by baanotdorky View Post
If being able to do the tasks listed by lllj really is viewed as adequate for entry level candidates then maybe I am in better shape than I thought.
Depends on the exact role - in an actuarial technology/programming department or other heavily technical departments expectations will be different - but in the vast majority of cases I'd consider this more than adequate, would be above average.

In my last job I was considered one of the department's VBA experts and I didn't know all that much more than what I listed above, to be honest. Just need to know how to write loops to move data from one place to another and know how to Google and that solves the vast majority of things you'll ever need to do in vba in most roles. My code isn't that pretty (but is beautiful compared to some others') but with some time I can usually get things to work.

Definitely don't sell yourself short.
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  #25  
Old 02-15-2017, 11:45 PM
baanotdorky baanotdorky is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lllj View Post
Depends on the exact role - in an actuarial technology/programming department or other heavily technical departments expectations will be different - but in the vast majority of cases I'd consider this more than adequate, would be above average.

In my last job I was considered one of the department's VBA experts and I didn't know all that much more than what I listed above, to be honest. Just need to know how to write loops to move data from one place to another and know how to Google and that solves the vast majority of things you'll ever need to do in vba in most roles. My code isn't that pretty (but is beautiful compared to some others') but with some time I can usually get things to work.

Definitely don't sell yourself short.
Thank you putting that list together and sharing your experience. I'll probably refer to that list to help me brush up on VBA in March!
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  #26  
Old 02-16-2017, 09:10 AM
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mathmajor mathmajor is offline
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por que no los dos?

Also, if you learn programming, at least take a real course or online program. It doesn't work to say, "yeah I've been working on learning to code."
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