“Once a badger, always a badger.” Professor Joan Schmit, Chair of the Risk and Insurance Department in the Wisconsin School of Business, had a perfect way of showcasing the relevance of this phrase.
On Friday, August 24, 2018, the current students met with Gerald P. Brunker (MS 1980), David J Dybdahl (MBA 1980), Gwendolyn Ezell (MBA 1999), and Will Dickson (MBA 2017) to discuss contemporary and imminent trends in the Risk and Insurance sectors. Alumni support has always been one of the prime strengths of the program, and the fact that people are associated with the program for as long as four decades reaffirms it.
The day started with an elevator pitch session with Heather Stelzer, our career coach, followed by a team meeting with Joan. These two sessions groomed us for the meetings with alumni. Lunch with 2nd-year students at UW’s iconic University Club followed with Joan serving as a perfect circle keeper, which resulted in people discovering common ground and a lot of fluid conversations.
Post lunch, students and alumni met for interactive and immensely informative discussions on topics such as entrepreneurship, the role of insurance in cyber risk management, the growing importance of analytics in the insurance industry, unexplored markets in the field of environmental insurance, the future course of the insurance industry, and a lot more. Mr. Dybdahl and Mr. Brunker further emphasized the importance of not only keeping abreast with trends in the market, but also specializing in them. They also shared how they were able to achieve their entrepreneurial successes using those same tendencies. Lastly, our alumni unequivocally echoed the importance of networking and certification programs such as ARM and CPCU.
The day concluded with an enchanting bowling experience, which gave us another platform for socializing. We are extremely thankful to the alumni for their valuable industry insights and suggestions which will immensely help us in shaping our careers. And it is only the first week.