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Solving the Risk and Insurance Industry’s Greatest Challenges

By Catherine Cleveland

April 20, 2022

On March 28, 2022, the Co-Curricular Learning Board (CCLB) held a “Current Challenges in the Risk and Insurance Industry” event with 13 company representatives and 70 students in attendance. The event was designed to teach students about current challenges the risk and insurance industry is facing related to the products and services they provide, while giving students a chance to contribute to solving some of these challenges.

Prior to the event, students were able to read about each company in the CCLB, biographies of all the attending representatives, and the specific challenge each company would be presenting. Students were able to choose three of the five presentations to attend, which was a difficult choice since each topic seemed so interesting.

The first session I attended was CUNA Mutual presenting “DEI in the Insurance Industry.” I learned about ways CUNA Mutual is identifying and addressing inequity for their policyholders and employees, and we brainstormed ways to continue to incorporate DEI in insurance companies. Second, I attended “The Future of Auto Insurance” by Travelers. We learned about some of the biggest emerging risks in auto insurance, such as the rise of technology in the auto industry. Last, I attended a session by Swiss Re called “Fair Practice and Discrimination in Life Insurance.” In this session, students learned about proxy discrimination and algorithmic bias, and we discussed the variables we thought were fair or ethical to include in pricing a life insurance policy. The sessions I couldn’t attend were American Family’s “The Gig Economy” and Milliman’s “COVID-19 Impact on Medical Professional Liability.”

In the networking portion of the event, I chatted with representatives I have never met before, as well as some that I’ve steadily communicated with throughout the past four years of my college experience. It is always nice to see both new and familiar faces from the industry. I was reminded that industry representatives like talking to us as much as we like talking to them.

This event was a huge success, and I’m so thankful that the Risk and Insurance Department hosted such an engaging event. Each session enriched what I’ve learned in classes, and it was refreshing that the companies of the CCLB wanted to hear the thoughts that students have on these current issues. While we may not have completely solved the challenges in the risk and insurance industry, I feel much more equipped to think about them as I step closer to my career in insurance.