Elizabeth Riczko never dreamed of a career in insurance. She first stumbled onto the actuarial world as a senior at Muhlenberg College. Majoring in math and physics, she eyed a Ph.D. in nuclear physics as her next step after school. But Riczko’s educational background presented the then newly engaged college graduate with a different career choice.

“Many who have ended up in the industry have a story like mine,” she says. “In the 1980s, it was not common to say ‘I want to graduate and go into insurance.’”

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