Where are you based?
Originally from Delhi, India, but recently relocated to Dublin, Ireland.
When did you first consider an actuarial career and why?
I always knew I was fascinated by numbers, but seeing everyone around me studying to become chartered accountants didn’t really get me excited. Being curious about actuarial science, I attended a seminar on the career path of an actuary – it was very new and niche, and I found the syllabus very interesting.
What subject(s) did you study at university?
Finance and accounting.
What has been most challenging throughout your work/study life to date?
Managing a busy season at work and studying for an actuarial exam amid the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.
What do you enjoy most about being an actuary?
I enjoy being part of the niche group that is one of the top-ranked professions globally –
I particularly like the look on people’s faces when they hear I am an actuary!
Where would you like to be in five years’ time?
I would like to have gained significant expertise in health and a non-life actuarial domain and ideally be leading a team or project, while balancing this effectively with my family and personal wellbeing.
What is your most actuarial habit?
Implementing the actuarial control cycle in any problem-solving scenario – assessing the issue, analysing risks, weighing in external environments and monitoring the results.
What is the greatest risk you have ever taken?
I have recently moved continents and changed my actuarial domain after seven years in the health industry – it’s a change of physical and technical environment, and sometimes feels like I am starting afresh!
How do you relax in your spare time?
I love spending time with my family, whether that’s stepping outdoors to enjoy the weather or cooking together. When I get more time than that, I love painting – it has a cathartic effect.
Who is your role model – in life or in business?
My mother is my role model – the way she manages to be a strong independent woman, a brilliant doctor and an absolutely doting mother is very admirable.
Give one piece of advice to the next generation of students entering the profession?
It can be a very rocky road if you let it become one, managing exams, work and personal commitments. Just tell yourself to stay focused and persistent with your exam progress during the first few years of student life, while you have the fire in you, to reap the benefits in the long run.
Name one skill (aside from technical) that is an important quality for an actuary?
Staying calm under pressure.
Now that you have qualified… what next?
I’n working towards becoming a Fellow now.
Megha Srivastava Associate actuary, Deloitte, Ireland
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