Alumni Success Stories

Ferris Honors Alumnus Brandon KandtBrandon Kandt
Graduated May 2008
B.S. in Applied Mathematics, Actuarial Science
Ph. D. Candidate, University of Michigan

My fondest memories of Ferris and the Honors Program were pulling all nighters in the conference rooms in Helen Ferris Hall. As a result great bonding took place, finals week was less of a nightmare, and close friendships developed.

The greatest benefits of being in Honors were the early registration perk, and the requirements to volunteer and to join a student group. The early registration perk allowed me to craft a great schedule each semester. Due to volunteering and joining a student group I learned the value of networking and I learned how much fun it can be to help others. The forced volunteerism has persuaded me to continue volunteering throughout the rest of my life.

Due to bringing in CLEP and AP credits I was only at Ferris for two years. In my third and final year I became part of National Student Exchange (NSE) and took classes in Washington state for one year. I did that because I have a sense of adventure, like change, wanted to see more of the country and because I could. It wasn't a problem with Honors/classes/Ferris since the two colleges have an agreement via NSE.

My mentor at Ferris State, math professor Dr. Kent Sun, had a big impact on me. I started out in Honors as a Pre-Pharmacy student, but after taking MATH 251, Introductory Stats, I knew I needed to change my major. I was very interested in statistics, so that cemented my decision to become an actuary. In MATH 414 and 416, Mathematical Statistics 1 & 2, the three of us in these classes studied together with our professor, Dr. Sun, for the actuary exams. Dr. Sun's dedication to the three of us, and to the subject matter, was amazing. I realized for the first time that it is more important what you learn in a class, and what you take away from that experience, than what grade you receive.

The best advice I can give to future Honors students is to commit to self-discipline and good time management or you will never get the grades, the experiences or the future you want.