Gamma Iota Sigma  Student Newsletter
May 2017   

In This Issue
RIMS 2017
46th Annual Conference
Industry Career Opportunities
GIS Webinar Series
Drake Symposium
Scholarship Opportunities
RMI Student Engagement Program
Insurance Jeopardy
Tim Cook Honored
RIMS NeXtGen Forum
IAIP Convention
Sustaining Partner Spotlight
Student Spotlight
Alumni Spotlight
Alumni News
GIS Merchandise
GIS on Social Media
Amazon Smile
Quick Links

Mark Your Calendar!

View all  scholarship deadlines  and events.
Executive Committee
  Meg Allwein



Glenn Dorr

Executive Vice President


Jason Warden

Vice President


Jeff Henry

Vice President


John Hammond

(Immediate Past President)


Sabrina Hanitz



Wes Griffiths



Jake Timmins

Alumni Representative


Jacob Galecki

Industry Representative


Dr. RB Drennan

Faculty Representative


Dr. Karen Epermanis

Faculty Representative


Celeste Azubuike

Student Representative


Sarah Rumon

Student Representative


Noelle Codispoti 

Executive Director


GIS in Philadelphia, PA

Many students, advisors and alumni of GIS gathered in Philadelphia for the RIMS Conference last week.  It was a productive week filled with workshops, exhibits, educational sessions, networking events, exciting speakers, and so much more. 

One of the many highlights of the conference was the Spencer-RIMS Risk Management Challenge. Many GIS chapters participated, and all three finalists were GIS schools shown below in order: Alpha Omega at St. Joseph's University, Rho at Appalachian State University, and Beta Lambda at Butler University. 

Alpha Omega at St. Joseph's University. St. Joseph's won the competition! Congratulations to the St. Joseph's team and all of the participants on your hard work and success.  

Below are some photos from the conference. Thank you to all of the attendees. You represented Gamma Iota Sigma proudly!

46th Annual International Conference!
Time to Reserve Your Rooms!

GIS is thrilled to be hosting the  46th Annual International Conference  at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas, Texas from  September 28-30, 2017. Reserve your room today and get ready to be "Professional, Prepared, Primed" to enter the insurance industry.

Hold your rooms today, don't miss this premier event allowing you to develop professionally and expand on your industry exposure and knowledge. The agenda includes the largest career fair of its kind, educational sessions, Dive In diversity and inclusion sessions, and keynote addresses, in addition to leadership seminars and ample networking opportunities. 

Make sure we see you in Dallas!
GIS Features Industry Opportunities:  
Don't miss out on these great opportunities, apply today!

C heck out the GIS  Career Center , the only centralized location for you to search through and apply for  internship and entry-level opportunities across the industry.   Employers can also search through student profiles, so be sure to get  your resume on there!  It's  easy:
            1. Go to the Career Center website
            2. Upload your resume
            3. Check out the posted jobs and internships
This is an exclusive benefit for Gamma Iota Sigma members  to be seen by companies and organizations who are actively recruiting and to apply for internships and jobs. Don't miss out!

Below are just a sample of some of the opportunities that await you in the Career Center. Go to 
for additional opportunities!
ICYMI! GIS Webinar Series   
Link to Past Webinars!

Did you miss a topic? You can find all of the replays here !


Thank you to Assurex Global for providing the webinar host technology!

The Drake Symposium
Another Successful Inter-Chapter Event! 

Congratulations to the Chi Chapter at Drake University on hosting the incredibly successful Drake Symposium on Leadership and Insurance in Des Moines, IA, from April 8th-9th, 2017. The event included speaker sessions, a formal, and a golf tournament/clinic. 

GIS members from Alpha Iota Chapter at St. John's University, the Sigma Chapter at Temple University, and the Beta Pi Chapter at the University of St. Thomas traveled to Drake for this great event. 

Scholarships Available:
Do You Need Money to Pay for School? Apply today!

There are many scholarship opportunities available for stu dents studying to pursue careers in insurance. See below for application and deadline information for upcoming opportunities. 

June 1:

For additional scholarship opportunities visit:

2017 RMI Student Engagement Program
September 16th - 19th in Orlando, Florida

The Institutes CPCU Society and the CPCU-Loman Education Foundation are committed to attracting the best and brightest students into the property-casualty insurance and risk management industry and to helping these students succeed throughout their careers. To support these efforts, they are offering college students the opportunity to engage with experienced mentors, as well as financial support to begin their CPCU® journey, through the 2017 Student Engagement Program.

Students accepted into the 2017 program will receive s upport to attend the 2017 Annual Meeting, September 16-19 in Orlando, FLThe CPCU Society Annual Meeting brings together thousands of insurance and risk management professionals at all levels to educate, inspire and empower the next industry leaders. 

For more information and instructions on how to apply, please visit The deadline is May 15, 2017.

Reminder: Sign Up for Insurance Jeopardy!
Hosted by AAMGA at the GIS Annual International Conference

Join us for the AAMGA's Insurance Jeopardy, which will be hosted at the 2017 GIS Conference  in Dallas, TX! Don't miss this opportunity for friendly competition with your GIS colleagues! The event will take place in several rounds on Saturday, September 30. Build your 4-person team, and sign up online by Friday, September 8, 2017 to secure your chance to play.

Important Note: A team of four players is not required to be entirely from the same chapter. You are encouraged to form a team representing either your chapter, or a combination of chapters! Individual players may also sign up to be placed on a team (based on availability). Interested but don't have a team put together yet? Complete the form anyway to let us know of your interest! A resource bank will be provided on the GIS website in advance of the competition.
Congratulations to Mr. Tim Cook!
VCU's Outstanding Professional Faculty Member for 2017

Mr. Tim Cook, Director of the Virginia Commonwealth University Risk and Insurance Studies Center, was recognized as the Outstanding Professional Faculty Member for 2017 at the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business. 

In his time at VCU; Tim has brought the School of Business and his students a wealth of knowledge, a vast network of professional contacts and a contagious passion for education and the risk management and insurance industries. He has steadily grown the Risk Management and Insurance program and the Gamma Iota Sigma - Alpha Mu chapter, to which he is the faculty advisor, to heights that brought national recognition to the University and the School of Business. His name will be added to the wall in the Snead Hall atrium that recognizes all outstanding members of the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Business. Tim has already left his mark on the Risk Management and Insurance Center now all those that walk through the building will know what an impact he has made to the University and his students.

Congratulations, Tim! 
RIMS NeXtGen Forum 2017
June 4-5 in Austin, Texas!

This year, RIMS has opened registration to the RIMS NeXtGen Forum to its student members. Join us in Austin, TX, from June 4-5 for this educational and networking event for young risk professionals.

This event is an opportunity to supplement your studies with practitioner insight on real-world risk management challenges, as well as meet Rising Risk Professionals who can give you career advice. You'll also learn risk management best practices and how to navigate corporate structures. The agenda offers 101 level sessions for early career professionals:

* Everything You Need to Know About Cyber Risk Insurance
* A Fresh View from the Rising Stars
* Risky Business: Navigating Risk Management Inside and Outside Your Company
* Networking Your Way to Your Next Risk Management Role

Become a RIMS Student Member to attend the NeXtGen Forum at the student rate of $99. All you have to do is submit a PDF of your transcript to and we will activate your membership.

Visit the website to view the complete agenda, learn about the speakers and get hotel/travel information. We hope to see you there!
Discount for GIS at the 76th Annual IAIP Convention
June 15-17th in Albuquerque, New Mexico!

Plan now to attend the IAIP 76th Annual Convention in Albuquerque, New Mexico where the IAIP will influence careers, develop leaders and connect members.  

Educational workshops will include CE approved courses, topics focused on career development, and association management training for local leaders. Network with other professionals and vendors to take the pulse of what is happening for industry trends, share best practices, and gather new ideas to take home.

A special discounted student rate is available only for GIS student members - over 50% off the non-IAIP member price!

Visit the website for more information and to register today!
Sustaining Partner Spotlight: 
Swiss Re

Are you interested in the future?  Driverless cars, solar panel fields, planes that can fly on just solar energy, ageing population, natural disaster, drones and cyber security: these are the kind of global topics that make life today so challenging and a job at Swiss Re so rewarding. By analyzing and being prepared to respond to the major risks the world faces, we have the ability to make a positive impact on business and society. If you want to learn more about the work Swiss Re does, check out the following video: .
Swiss Re is a global Reinsurer with a 153-year history and an exceptional work culture featuring many exciting programs that invest in you. Our main recruitment season for our interns@swissre program is the fall of each year and targets students from sophomore through senior year. We offer internships in various areas such as Actuarial, Underwriting, Strategy, Client Management, Business Development and many more. In addition to our internships we also offer an Actuarial Development training program and our global training program, graduates@swissre.
If you are interested in learning more about opportunities at Swiss Re and hearing from students who completed an internship, check out the following link: .  Swiss Re will be attending GIS events in the coming fall which will allow us to directly speak to you, learn more about your background and interest, and discuss potential careers at Swiss Re.

Student Spotlight: 
"The way GIS prepares you both personally and professionally will truly serve you well in really any career. "
Name: Patrick Cohen
School:   Temple University
Chapter:  Sigma
Officer Title:  President
Major:  Actuarial Science
Graduation: May 2017
What do you hope to do with your degree in Risk Management, Insurance, or Actuarial Science?
With my actuarial science degree, I plan to pursue a Fellowship designation with the Society of Actuaries. I have the ultimate goal of learning as much as possible about the insurance industry and the ways in which I can help solve the toughest problems faced by the company I am working for. Although my degree is in actuarial science, I hope to gain knowledge from all functional areas and operations within the business, as that puts me in the greatest position to be the best actuary I can be.        
Why did you choose to major in Risk Management, Insurance, or Actuarial Science?
I like math. Typical. But more than that, I enjoy solving problems, figuring out that missing piece to the puzzle, and the ability to think outside the box. Actuarial science is a field that allows me to use those mathematical skills in a business setting, and to not only help a company, but actually influence the lives of those around me. As an actuary, not only will I have the days of crunching numbers at the desk, but I'll also have the opportunity to present and communicate my work with others.

Why did you join Gamma Iota Sigma?

At first, I was simply a lost actuarial student who needed to find my way during my freshman year, and I thought it might be a good idea to check out the organization that had "actuarial science" in it. But after my first meeting, I was blown away. The benefits of joining such a prestigious organization are unmeasurable. The way GIS prepares you both personally and professionally will truly serve you well in really any career. I joined because GIS put me in the proper state of mind and helped focus my goals and how to achieve them. The members around me were incredible, friendly, and drove me to be the best I could - whether it was studying for a class, an actuarial exam, or simply having open ears when I had a question or problem.  
How has your participation in Gamma Iota Sigma prepared you for your career?

I would not be where I am today without Gamma Iota Sigma. Through my participation in GIS, I have had the opportunity to travel all over the country, meet some of the greatest friends and mentors I'll ever have, work with enthusiastic members and officers to sustain a successful chapter, gain invaluable knowledge at two internships, and land a full-time job post-graduation. I understand the insurance industry is pretty tight-knit, and it's amazing to have the ability to sit down and chat with individuals who I'm sure I will work with or do business with at some point in my career. Specifically for actuarial science majors, it's so nice to have people to talk to about the same struggles that you yourself are going through. Learning from other students about their studying schedules and which materials have helped them pass the exams are what ultimately led me to my exam success.  

What would you say to a student interested in joining Gamma Iota Sigma?

"What are you waiting for?" There is no wrong time to join. It does not matter what school you're at either, or how many members your chapter may have. It's all about taking the first step and walking into a meeting. Joining GIS is the easiest way to jump-start your career, and I would do it all over again if I had the chance.

Attention GIS Students! 
Are you interested being considered for the Student Spotlight?

If you are interested in being featured on social media, newsletters, or other GIS communications, please fill out the form in the link below! Thank you!

Alumni Spotlight:
"Go to the Chapter meetings, go to socials, luncheons, community service events, educational conferences, etc. these occasions are where you make true connections, get your name out, work on your professionalism and learn more about your field from people who are in it."

Name:  Michael  Assels, Travelers Insurance, Commercial Underwriting Trainee, Richardson, TX
Alma Mater: Th e University of Texas at Dallas
Chapter: Beta Phi  C hapter
Major: BS Business Administration - Concentration in Risk Management and Insurance
Graduation Date: 12/2016

Why did you join GIS, and what benefits did you experience through your participation in the organization?

Though I had already known I wanted to work in the Insurance industry, my mother has worked in it for over 30 years, I joined GIS to test myself. I had always heard networking was key and this was an opportunity that gave that. Little did I know I would become Secretary and then be looked upon to help others network and that tested me again. I wanted to go out and create connections that would help me but also that I could then pass on to my chapter's members. I experienced wonderful, caring people that loved insurance like me. A subset of people I had never crossed before (I mean, I used to hang out with the boring accounting folks). I was able to receive scholarships, I was given exposure to many companies, and as an officer I was able to develop leadership and time-keeping skills that have helped me start my career.

What advice would you give to students considering joining GIS

JOIN ASAP! This organization offers too many opportunities not to. I will also say this though, it's not enough to join. Yes, you can still receive the benefits of scholarships and more but you cannot truly reap the full benefits of Gamma without being involved. Go to the Chapter meetings, go to socials, luncheons, community service events, educational conferences, etc. these occasions are where you make true connections, get your name out, work on your professionalism and learn more about your field from people who are in it.

What advice would you give to students wishing to pursue a career in the insurance industry? 

As I'm sure everyone has heard, it is an industry that will need to hire a plethora of young talent in the coming years in order to keep up with demand. This statement should be enough to excite anyone and if you are interested I implore you to research. Look into all of the fields, and don't fall into the assumption of "I don't want to sell insurance."

How has your career been impacted by your college and alumni involvement in GIS?

Involvement in GIS had given me connections within my company before I had even started. During the GIS Conference in 2016 I was already aware that I was starting at Travelers in January 2017 so I decided to use my time to build my network, aside from speaking to other students and agents/brokers I wanted to meet my peers. Travelers was there hosting a few workshops and I met over a handful of employees from Ohio to Minnesota and was even able to sit with them during the dinner. I still am in contact with many of them now.

Is there any advice you wished you had before graduating college with regards to the insurance industry, GIS, or your career path?

The only wish I have is that the insurance program and GIS would have arrived at my University earlier in my college career. I was entering my last semester as a Junior when the program was started and though I already knew I wanted to go into the Insurance Industry, GIS and our Insurance program director were the two driving forces that gave me the most confidence that I was entering the right career for me and that I would be prepared right from the start. Plus I wished I had attended more than only one conference!! 

Please feel free to share any other comments that might assist a college student who is considering joining GIS or pursuing a career in insurance.

Gamma is a place that allows insurance nerds to be who they are. You meet wonderful people from within your school and across the U.S. and Canada who think like you and get excited about the same things. Even if you are not sure you want to work in insurance, you should still join to meet great people, have opportunities for scholarships and participate in community service events.

Alumni Council Contacts
Calling All GIS Graduates! 

Alumni and alumni to be, please take a few minutes to fill out the Alumni Update Form. Help us to stay in touch with you, and keep you current and informed on all things GIS!

There are many ways to stay involved as an alumnus of GIS, and by providing your new information we can keep you informed with newsletters, e-mails and about important information and upcoming events. We look forward to watching your careers grow!

Students, please consider joining one of our alumni chapters if you are looking to continue your involvement with our organization upon graduation. Our alumni chapters are growing in current cities and expanding into new cities. We are looking for alumni who would like to be involved in starting new chapters in new locations!  

For more information on the GIS Alumni Council, please contact one of the regional chapter leaders below or Alumni Council President, Jake Timmins at  or Vice President, Sabrina Hanitz at  for information on starting a chapter in your area! You can also visit the Alumni Council Webpage  to contact your local leaders.

GIS Online Merchandise Store
Graduation is Coming Soon! Order Today!

GIS has partnered with an online vendor to conveniently provide customized Gamma merchandise to you such as polo shirts, fleeces, pins, padfolios, table cloths, coffee mugs, and graduation stoles.

Check out the  site at the link below to order your Gamma Merchandise today!

GIS is looking forward to sharing your pictures this year with the cap toppers now available on the website!
The GIS Pom-Pom shirts that were so popular at the Annual Conference will be coming soon to the Merchandise Store! Stay tuned!

GIS on Social Media:
Please be sure to like, follow, and join! #GammaIS

Did you know that Gamma Iota Sigma is on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn?
Share your photos and events, and f ollow us on social media to get updates on upcoming events, hear from other chapters, and get information on industry scholarships and opportunities!
We hope to see you on social media! 

Gamma Iota Sigma Grand Chapter on  Facebook , Instagram LinkedIn , and Twitter .


Remember GIS on Amazon Smile!
It's Easy and Free!  and select "Gamma Iota Sigma" where  every time you shop, GIS will receive a donation from Amazon of 0.5% of your eligible purchases with no cost to you!  

Simple, effortless and free! Thank you!

Noelle Codispoti                                            
Executive Director                                         

Sharla Floyd
Director of Development and Strategic Initiatives

Grace Grant
Director of Chapter Services

Alyson Koehler
Director of Marketing & Communications

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