Graduate Advising

Faculty Graduate Advisor

Tomoyuki Ichiba; Faculty Graduate Advisor; Graduate Program Director

Graduate student academic advising; grades; courses; elective requests; petitions to add the Stat MA Obj; TA Assignments

BS/MS Actuarial Science Co-Director

Raya Feldman; BS/MS Actuarial Program Co-Director

BS/MS Actuarial Program academic advising; BS/MS 5-year memo

Graduate Program Advisor

Jamie Pillsbury; Graduate Program Advisor

Graduate student administrative advising; petitions; employment; academic files; keys; cubicle assignments; Graduate Policy


The Faculty Graduate Advisor is a faculty member who is appointed each year to advise students regarding their academic programs and progress. All graduate students should consult with the department’s Faculty Graduate Advisor about their program of study regularly throughout their time with the PSTAT department.

The FGA can give general guidance on:

  • Graduate student academic advising
  • Transfer work evaluations
  • TA assignments
  • Requests for elective courses outside PSTAT

You should see the FGA when:

  • You are looking for general advising regarding your degree progress and/or academic goals
  • A problem rises affecting your academic work
  • There is a change in your study plan or degree objective


For matters of an administrative nature, students should see the department’s Graduate Program Advisor. The Graduate Program advisor is a staff member who handles the administrative duties of the graduate program. The Graduate Program Advisor is a good resource for departmental and UC-wide policy and can act as a liaison with the Graduate Division.

You should see the Graduate Program Advisor for:

  • Academic records
  • Childcare Reimbursement requests
  • Cubicle assignments
  • Employment records
  • Forms and petitions
  • General guidelines on advancing, defending, and filing paperwork
  • Practice qualifying exams
  • Referral to campus resources
  • Textbooks (TAs only)

You should see the Graduate Program Advisor when:

  • You are thinking about submitting a petition to Graduate Divison
  • You are looking for guidance on submitting paperwork for advancing or defending
  • You are looking for guidance on submitting a request to go on academic leave or filing leave
  • You have a general question regarding University policy regarding Graduate students or TAs
  • You have had an issue with your paycheck (TAs only)
  • You need help with regards to departmental resources including keys, email, cubicle, mailbox, academic files, and printer codes.


It is each student’s responsibility to obtain the early consent of a faculty member to serve as their thesis/dissertation advisor (also called the committee chair). This advisor directs the student’s research and supervises their progress. As soon as Ph.D. students, or M.A. students who are writing a thesis, are ready to start their research, they should ask a faculty member to be their committee chair/advisor. It takes a long time for students to become familiar with a professor’s emphasis and approach to research, so serious consideration to this decision should be given. An advisor may have additional course requirements because of a particular sub-field.

Students should maintain frequent and regular contact with their advisor, regardless of their progress. Continuous personal contact allows a professor to know the student’s backgrounds, interests, creative abilities, technical skills, strengths, and weaknesses. Without this detailed knowledge, it is difficult for faculty to give appropriate direction for research.


Students that are interested in the combined BS/MS Actuarial Program will work closely with the Actuarial Program Co-Director, Dr. Raya Feldman, with regards to academic goals, progress, and objectives both in undergrad status and in grad status.


All graduate students should meet with the faculty graduate advisor to establish a study plan to guide the selection of courses that meet the degree objective requirements and to ensure timely progress towards the degree.

  • Students should consult with the Faculty Graduate Advisor to establish a study plan upon their arrival into the program
  • Students are recommended to regularly meet with the Faculty Graduate Advisor regarding degree progress and academic goals
  • Students are recommended to regularly meet with their Thesis/Dissertation Advisor with regards to research progress and requirements
  • Any modification to the standard course requirements must be approved by the Faculty Graduate Advisor and documented in the student file


  • All students in the BS/MS Actuarial Program will consult with the Actuarial Co-Director, Dr. Raya Feldman, instead of the Faculty Graduate Advisor, for academic advising
  • Any modification to the standard course requirements for the BS/MS Actuarial Program must be approved by the Actuarial Program Co-Director and documented in the student file