Illinois State University was one of just thirteen universities worldwide recently recognized as a Center of Actuarial Excellence by the Society of Actuaries (SOA). It is the only university in Illinois to receive this noteworthy distinction.

The actuarial program is housed in the College of Arts and Science and directed by Dr. Krzysztof Ostaszewski. However, the collaboration between that program, the Katie School of Insurance and the College of Business was a key criterion judges considered in its decision.

The College of Business provides curriculum for undergraduate actuarial students who take several key accounting and finance courses. Currently, 17 actuarial students have business minors. The Katie School offers actuarial students scholarships, as well as opportunities to participate in leadership programs, industry conferences, risk consulting projects, and Toastmasters. In addition, the Katie School has developed curriculum such as an online program for actuarial students, provides real world data and research opportunities, and helps fund two high school summer programs for top school students from around the country considering degrees in risk management or actuarial science.

Schools recognized by the SOA are known as Centers of Actuarial Excellence (CAE). Each met specific requirements related to degree, curriculum, graduate count, faculty composition, graduate quality, appropriate integration, connection to industry, and research/scholarship. The designation is awarded for a five year period subject to continued conformity to the CAE criteria.