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  #1  
Old 06-27-2013, 02:39 PM
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asyadav412 asyadav412 is offline
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Default How practical is it to become an actuary for a foreigner?

Here's my situation. I am 18 year old and from India. I am enrolled in a computer engineering course. I just completed my first year out of four. I am willing to get an actuarial job in the USA, apparently for two reasons-Indian market for actuaries is not good enough and my girlfriend lives in the USA.

I assume that I have what it takes to be an actuary-Excellent Math skills, Good communication skills and I am a hard worker too. By the end of my semester I will have a very wide knowledge of computers too.

But more I read forums the more i get worried. I know how difficult it is for other International aspirants to get a job there. But i wish to know how hard is it?

Here are a few things i could think of right now:
1) I am planning on clearing four exams by the end of my computer course (which is a period of three years) and apply for internships and Entry level jobs there in the USA. Along with that I will be working on my communication skills too.

2) Or i could do nothing right now and get a Master's degree in AS from there. Along with that i will take exams as well. I don't want to waste my dad's money. I am not willing to get a Master's if it doesn't assure me a very good CHANCE of getting an Entry Level job.

3) Or i could get an MBA from there. But that would take longer as most good schools require work experience.

That's all i could think of right now. i
Is there something else you suggest?

If it is necessary I can be physically present there for a couple of months.
I can apply to a hundred of jobs if it necessary. All i want to know is whether i hold a good chance of getting a job in America or not. All the forums i read are 4 to 5 years old when recession was at its peak. So maybe market might have changed by now. At least that's what I am hoping. So maybe there are more chance for international aspirants. Or is it still the same?
My job search will begin at least two years later.

Oh and yeah, i am just an average student at computer engineering course, so i won't be expecting a GPA higher than 3.5. That's pretty much it, i guess.

So what do you people suggest i do? Do i have good chance if i work hard?
I don't want to waste my three years by studying if i have almost no chance. Any kind of suggestions will be appreciated except marrying my girl (That's what most people suggest when i posted that in Yahoo Answers). Please be realistic and critical if it's necessary.

Thank you very much!
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  #2  
Old 06-27-2013, 02:43 PM
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ShivamS ShivamS is offline
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First of all, you should marry your girl!


Ummm, do you have a Green Card? That'd help a lot.

It sounds like you don't - so I think that makes it much more difficult.


IDK much about the market for internationals, so take what I say with a grain of salt - except for my very first sentence (that, I think you should do).

But, I definitely say no to option 2 though. Option 3, maybe, but I don't think MBA's are that helpful.
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  #3  
Old 06-27-2013, 02:47 PM
Enough Exams Already Enough Exams Already is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asyadav412 View Post
Here's my situation. I am 18 year old and from India. I am enrolled in a computer engineering course. I just completed my first year out of four. I am willing to get an actuarial job in the USA, apparently for two reasons-Indian market for actuaries is not good enough and my girlfriend lives in the USA.

I assume that I have what it takes to be an actuary-Excellent Math skills, Good communication skills and I am a hard worker too. By the end of my semester I will have a very wide knowledge of computers too.

But more I read forums the more i get worried. I know how difficult it is for other International aspirants to get a job there. But i wish to know how hard is it?

Here are a few things i could think of right now:
1) I am planning on clearing four exams by the end of my computer course (which is a period of three years) and apply for internships and Entry level jobs there in the USA. Along with that I will be working on my communication skills too.

2) Or i could do nothing right now and get a Master's degree in AS from there. Along with that i will take exams as well. I don't want to waste my dad's money. I am not willing to get a Master's if it doesn't assure me a very good CHANCE of getting an Entry Level job.

3) Or i could get an MBA from there. But that would take longer as most good schools require work experience.

That's all i could think of right now. i
Is there something else you suggest?

If it is necessary I can be physically present there for a couple of months.
I can apply to a hundred of jobs if it necessary. All i want to know is whether i hold a good chance of getting a job in America or not. All the forums i read are 4 to 5 years old when recession was at its peak. So maybe market might have changed by now. At least that's what I am hoping. So maybe there are more chance for international aspirants. Or is it still the same?
My job search will begin at least two years later.


Oh and yeah, i am just an average student at computer engineering course, so i won't be expecting a GPA higher than 3.5. That's pretty much it, i guess.

So what do you people suggest i do? Do i have good chance if i work hard?
I don't want to waste my three years by studying if i have almost no chance. Any kind of suggestions will be appreciated except marrying my girl (That's what most people suggest when i posted that in Yahoo Answers). Please be realistic and critical if it's necessary.

Thank you very much!
Your biggest problem isn't going to be the work. It's going to be the work visa. You have to be good enough to convince an employer to sponsor you. In this economy, that may be a hard case to make. That doesn't mean it's impossible to make--but you have to convince them that you're worth the extra expense.
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  #4  
Old 06-27-2013, 03:15 PM
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asyadav412 asyadav412 is offline
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Originally Posted by Enough Exams Already View Post
Your biggest problem isn't going to be the work. It's going to be the work visa. You have to be good enough to convince an employer to sponsor you. In this economy, that may be a hard case to make. That doesn't mean it's impossible to make--but you have to convince them that you're worth the extra expense.
Thanks a lot for the advice. But how exactly do i convince them. By clearing more exams? Being great at interviews? Getting more than one internships(if i get it)? Or some other way?
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  #5  
Old 06-27-2013, 03:19 PM
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asyadav412 asyadav412 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShivamS View Post
First of all, you should marry your girl!


Ummm, do you have a Green Card? That'd help a lot.

It sounds like you don't - so I think that makes it much more difficult.


IDK much about the market for internationals, so take what I say with a grain of salt - except for my very first sentence (that, I think you should do).

But, I definitely say no to option 2 though. Option 3, maybe, but I don't think MBA's are that helpful.
What do you say for the option 1? of course, i don't have a green card. Work visa wouldn't have been a problem then.

I know marrying would be an easier option, but i don't want to marry someone unless i am financially independent.
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  #6  
Old 06-27-2013, 05:55 PM
bertuary bertuary is offline
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Realistically it is an extremely tight market if you need sponsorship to work in the US. Will that still be the case in 2 years? Hard to predict, but probably yes. Right now there are way more entry level candidates than positions and there is simply no need for companies to sponsor to find qualified candidates. It doesn't seem like anything in the system is going to change that dynamic over the near term.

There is no magic bullet to making yourself more attractive to companies because of the sponsorship issue. Companies fall primarily into two categories:

1) Those that do not sponsor - period. There is nothing you can do to improve in the eyes of this group (and this group is the majority).
2) Those that are open to it, but you must be the best candidate of those that apply. To be the best here - have more exams, have work experience, have strong computer skills, have flawless English (oral and written), be personable, be likeable, be involved.

I'm sorry to be blunt, but it is an uphill battle for international actuarial students in the US. You will need to apply everywhere you can find and will have a substantially lower hit ratio than your US peers, no matter how fantastic your resume and qualifications. It's doable, but will take a LOT of effort.

I would recommend Option 2 to help improve your English and allow for the possibility of having an internship in the States.
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  #7  
Old 06-27-2013, 07:28 PM
LifeSucks LifeSucks is offline
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How is the long-distance relationship with your gf going?

Quote:
Originally Posted by asyadav412 View Post
Thanks a lot for the advice. But how exactly do i convince them. By clearing more exams? Being great at interviews? Getting more than one internships(if i get it)? Or some other way?
You can come here, spend several years as a penniless student, beg for a job (getting one is next to impossible these days, are you really smarter/more qualified than tens of thousands of citizens?), well, if you really win the lottery and get an H1B job, you will then serve at a company for 10+ years, in the meantime you will be looking enviously at losers who work minimum wage jobs in a cool area of the country like CA or HI and asking god why they are able to live next to a beach and you have to sit in podunk patiently waiting for green card and getting heart attacks every time layoffs are coming as that would reset your green card process to the very beginning (assuming you even get a new job before you are laid off and don't kill youself looking at the amazing opportunities at companies with "no sponsorship" policy going to people less intelligent to you), oh and an annual 2-week trip back home will be your main vacation, and you will hate talking to your friend living in say Europe who will get to explore the planet using their 25+ day vacation programs, anyway, after 10 years you get a green card and will finally be free to quit your job, at which point you will realize you got old and you wasted the best years of your life. In the meantime you will also realize that contemporary America is not what you read about or saw on TV when you were young and naive.

A bottle of wine will become your best friend.

You will start reading books about differential geometry hoping that they will help you build a time machine that will let you go back 20 years and talk some sense into the young you.
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  #8  
Old 06-27-2013, 07:32 PM
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ShivamS ShivamS is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asyadav412 View Post
What do you say for the option 1? of course, i don't have a green card. Work visa wouldn't have been a problem then.

I know marrying would be an easier option, but i don't want to marry someone unless i am financially independent.
None of them really sound too appealing. Is this definitely what you want to do? Because it seems like a slim hope. Not trying to be a jerk - just want to give you an honest opinion since you're committing so much time to do this.
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Physical violence as acceptable reaction or outdated masculine bravado as a positive quality is definitely not something the country should be moving towards or qualities we want to see in a President.



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  #9  
Old 06-27-2013, 08:07 PM
gcact gcact is offline
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Have you passed an exam? Start with that...
If there are opportunities to work as an actuary in India, you need to try your absolute best to work for those companies. They might not specifically be asking for interns, but send emails, regular mail, and show up there and ask if they have intern positions available. Even if you have to be an unpaid intern, that experience will make you a better candidate and give you more hope of being sponsored stateside.
You must be able to communicate effectively, in English, what your responsibilities were at your internship or other jobs, along with everything else on your resume. If you can do all of that well, then you've done all you can, you just need to wait for someone to come along with the right opportunity.
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  #10  
Old 06-28-2013, 01:15 AM
OME76 OME76 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asyadav412 View Post
I am 18 year old and from India. I am enrolled in a computer engineering course.
Have you not heard of Tata, Infosys, Microsoft, SAP, or IBM? With your background, you're almost guaranteed to get into those companies. Most large companies that hire actuaries outsource their IT work rather than insource.

Look for Indian recruiters at your colleges career fairs. They strongly prefer Indians that need H1B sponsorship.

FYI. This isn't meant to be racist. I spent a long time searching for jobs in the current economy and know a lot of foreign students with advanced degrees. All the foreign students that needed sponsorship and got jobs got those jobs at the companies notorious for sponsoring H1B VISAS. The US citizens that applied to those places however....

*EDIT* For reference as to what goes on at these companies: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCbFEgFajGU

Last edited by OME76; 06-28-2013 at 01:19 AM..
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