I cannot speak to Hal Butler's Medical Innovations corporation. I have no idea if it works well or not. I think it's only fair that I mention that. The purpose of this report is to write about my experiences with Hal Butler's Actuarial Innovations.
I have been in the business world for a few years and like many folks I was recently subject to the economic crunch. I immediately began looking for a new position on job boards throughout the middle Tennessee area. Having a bachelor's degree in business from The University of Michigan, as well a fantastic resume, I figured that I would throw my resume to most anything that looked remotely interesting and came across Hal Butler's Actuarial Innovations. He indicated that the position he was hiring (or, more accurately, representing) was for an "Assistant Actuarial Analyst - Entry Level" position with his company. I sent of my resume off to Mr. Butler.
A few days later, I heard back from him asking me if I could I come in for an interview. Being unemployed at the time, I was pretty excited that an interview had come my way. I agreed to interview the following morning.
My first interview went well and I was told at the end of it that he would like to schedule a second interview with me. I agreed.
I came to my second interview and spoke at length with Mr. Butler about the position. Hal informed me that he would be able to find me a paid internship position with a local company in the actuarial field based on my abilities while I was prepping for this exam. But, after much discussion, the following things were brought to light:
Actuarial Innovations only offers a prep course for the P/1 Actuarial Exam (which is the first in a series of actuarial exams which folks in that profession are expected to complete throughout the course of their career). This course costs $380.00 for five individual two hour long classroom sessions largely focusing on the review of statistics and probabilities. Per hour, that is significantly more expensive than any undergraduate math class at an accredited university... Furthermore, you do not receive any sort of university or continuing education credit for completing Hal Butler's prep course.
Next, the text for the review class is $80.00 and the recommended calculator used for the class is an extra little kick for $15.00.
Lastly, the state of Tennessee charges a fee of $185.00 to take the state exam. I understand that like many other professions (i.e., lawyer, doctor, lpn, mortgage and insurance underwriting, cosmetology, etc...) there is no way getting around the state's fee.
The state's fee notwithstanding and let's say you have a qualifying calculator, you're looking at a fee of $460.00 just to take a prep class.
Being proficient in computer science, I bartered a deal with Mr. Butler: I bartered with him and agreed to fix some performance problems with his desktop in his office in order to take the class.
I attended the first two of five prep classes. I was not impressed. Hal Butler outsources the teaching of the prep classes to an instructor from a local junior college. Most of the information that our instructor provided was introductory level at best. In addition, the review class was largely populated with folks without a solid grasp of many basic mathematical concepts.
Having began studying for the exam on my own, I came to realize that the prep course was in no way going to prep me for the forthcoming exam. Furthermore, once the review classes began, Hal largely became unreachable. He no longer responded to his emails nor to any phone calls. The subject of the aforementioned internship became taboo.
So, my fellow Nashvillians, you will likely see the ads for "Assistant Actuarial Analyst - Entry Level" offered by one of Hal Butler's monikers. BEWARE. He is not offering a position but rather the opportunity to take a class that he feels is intended to prep someone for the very difficult P/1 actuarial exam.
And, yes, I have since found a job.