Gamma Iota Sigma  Student Newsletter
October 2017   

In This Issue
46th Annual Conference
Week of Giving
Relief Efforts
Dive In Festival
New Chapter Chartering
Gamma Beta
Industry Career Opportunities
Scholarship Opportunities
Alumni News
GIS Merchandise
GIS on Social Media
Amazon Smile
Quick Links

Mark Your Calendar!
View all  scholarship deadlines  and events.
Executive Committee
  Glenn Dorr

Wes Griffiths Executive Vice President

Cheryl Matochik

Steve Marohn
Vice President

Jake Timmins
Vice President

Jon Perry

Noelle Codispoti
Executive Director

Meg Allwein
(Immediate Past President)

Sabrina Hanitz
Alumni Representative

Millie Workman
Industry Representative

Dr. Karen Epermanis
Faculty Representative

Josh Cowdrey
Student Representative

Kate McCoy
Student Representative
Thank You for Another Incredibly Successful Conference!
The 46th Annual International Conference Memories Live On!

This year, over 550 students and advisors and nearly 300 industry representatives and alumni gathered from September 28th through 30th at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas, Texas for Gamma Iota Sigma's 46th Annual International Conference.  Over 60 organizations participated in the career fair and educational sessions, with over 400 first round interviews being held on-site during the first two days. There were over 60 industry- and student-led educational and informational sessions over the course of the event that encouraged student participation and the sharing of experiences and ideas. 

A number of speakers donated their time to share their insights during the general sessions. Friday's opening breakfast session included Eric Smith, Senior Vice President, Standard Commercial, Nationwide and a panel from the Derek Hughes/NAPSLO Educational Foundation. During the luncheon, Barbara Bufkin, Executive Head of Business Development, Assurant, Ivy Kusinga, SVP, Chief Culture Officer, Chubb, and Sophia Yen, Head of Insurance Strategy and Operations, KPMG LLC, addressed the crowd in a panel discussion. 


During the awards dinner, GIS was fortunate to have Fred Colon, C hief Diversity & Inclusion Officer and Head of Organization Effectiveness for Travelers as the keynote speaker. The audience was captivated by Fred's message to be one's authentic self, to be "all in" and to lead with "head and heart". His words were heartfelt and will continue to impact those who heard him for years to come. 

The second year of Dive In Festival events occurred with great success. GIS was part of this important initiative to bring significance to diversity and inclusion in the insurance industry. GIS was honored to be selected again as a location for Dive In, and thankful to the facilitators and attendees for making it a success. The Dive In sessions were followed by a Dive In Speed Networking Session. 

Also announced during the Conference were the results of the student vote for the two International Student Representatives (ISRs). This year, Josh Cowdrey from the Beta Epsilon Chapter at the University of Central Oklahoma, and Kate McCoy from the Chi Chapter at Drake University were elected by their peers into the ISR roles. Congratulations to both Josh and Kate.
The Grand Chapter would like to thank the 2017 Conference Sponsors and Sustaining Partners, who make this event and the organization's year-round programming possible. #GammaIS #GIS2017

Week of Giving - Save the Date! 
Make a Difference from October 14-21, 2017

Gamma Iota Sigma strives to give back to our local communities, and in partnership with the Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation Week of Giving, we are hoping to make our biggest impact yet. 

Please be prepared to volunteer, give, and make an impact in your local communities during the week of October 14-21, 2017. Please direct any questions to your chapter leaders.  We are so thankful for the positive effects that you will make on the world!

Support IICF in Hurricane Relief Efforts
Hurricane Harvey and Irma Disaster Relief Funds 

After careful consideration and in consultation with many industry partners and supporters, the IICF has opened a Hurricane Irma Disaster Relief Fund to help those impacted so severely by this devastating storm. As with our Hurricane Harvey relief fund, 100% of the donations will be directed to local nonprofit organizations working directly in the affected areas.

The catastrophic aftermath in Texas and now in Florida, and beyond, is heartbreaking and devastating to so many families. Recovery and rebuilding efforts will take many months or even years, and short-term needs remain critical. Tens of thousands are still living in emergency shelters in both states and millions in Florida remain without electricity. Your continued support of the IICF relief funds is deeply appreciated.

It is also with great appreciation that we share an update on the IICF Hurricane Harvey Disaster Relief Fund. Through your generous giving, more than $300,000 has been raised to help those in need.

It bears repeating that now is one of those crucial times when we can join together as an industry, and as Americans, and truly embody the IICF mission of helping communities, together.

Donations can made through:
IICF Hurricane Harvey Disaster Relief Fund

GIS Conference Hosts "Dive In" for the Second Year!
The Global Festival for Diversity & Inclusion in Insurance

GIS was honored to host the Dive In Festival at the Annual International Conference for the second year, and as 1 of only 5 US locations!

Students and industry representatives joined together for 5 provocative, interactive sessions touching on various aspects of diversity, inclusion, and authenticity: 

  • "Dive In - Your Early Career at AIG," presented by AIG
  • "Insurance Innovation Inclusion - The New Culture - Metrics to Measure Success," presented by Assurant
  • "How Do You Find Your Unique Place in the World," presented by Travelers
  • "Humans of GIS," presented by GammaSAID (Solutions for Authenticity, Inclusion, and Diversity
  • Speed Networking Session, featuring a number of Dallas-based GIS alumni and other industry representatives. 

The 2017 Global Dive In Festival has been in full force in 17 countries and 32 cities, creatively highlighting the business case for different perspectives and inclusive working cultures. For more information about the festival, and to appreciate our excitement about its inclusion in the conference, please visit:

GIS carries out Dive In-related programming year-round through its GammaSAID Council, a student-led initiative to foster meaningful dialogue and action throughout the industry. For more on GammaSAID, or to get involved with the Council, email Cameron Alford or Alyssa Bouchard .

And the Award Goes To....
Congratulations to the Following 2016-2017 Award Winners

Individual Awards:

Alan. C. Williams: The Alan C. Williams Leadership Award was established to recognize the one individual member of Gamma Iota Sigma that sets the best example for all other members and is our best ambassador to the insurance, risk management and actuarial science industries at the International Level as well as the local and regional levels.  In other words, the Alan C. Williams Leadership Award is the highest honor an individual member can receive from the Grand Chapter.

Kate McCoy, Chi Chapter, Drake University

Warren L. Weeks:  This award is given to encourage individual member leadership and to further the goals of the fraternity.  It is a tribute to the memory of an outstanding teacher and insurance industry leader and to our first Grand Chapter President.  

Patrick Cohen, Sigma Chapter, Temple University

Elizabeth Lange: This award is intended to recognize a member of a Gamma Iota Sigma collegiate chapter best exemplifying the personal character and values of Elizabeth Lange. Successful chapter, family and community contributions will hold a higher priority for the recipient than solely individual recognition.

Tina Rybak, Sigma Chapter, Temple University

Thomas J. Miles: 
This award was cre
ated in 2007 to honor the contributions to Gamma Iota Sigma of Tom Miles, professor emeritus of Central Michigan University and longtime advisor of the Nu Chapter. Established to  recognize the one individual member of Gamma Iota Sigma that best represents the qualities of scholarship, leadership, character, and service exemplified by Dr. Miles. 

Elizabeth Jackson, Nu Chapter, Central Michigan University
Trevor Carlson, Chi Chapter, Drake University

Anita Benedetti Memorial Award:  This award was created in 1996 in memory of Anita Benedetti who was one of our nation's foremost advocates of risk management education. 

Timothy Ellis, Sigma Chapter, Temple University

Special Achievement Individual Award: This year an award was provided to an individual who went above and beyond in helping the Grand Chapter. This student spent years working with the Grand Chapter staff and Board of Trustees. She was instrumental in founding her chapter, and since that time has immersed herself in the Gamma family by reaching out to other chapter leaders to gain knowledge and share her expertise. She was elected by her peers as the International Student Representative for consecutive terms. 

Sarah Rumon, Beta Pi Chapter, University of St. Thomas 

Alumnus of the Year Award:  In 2015, GIS created the Alumnus of the Year award to recognize the the great work and volunteer efforts of our alumni who continue to contribute in success of our organization and go above and beyond.  

Chris Place, Senior Consulting Actuary, Willis Towers Watson
Nu Chapter Alumnus, Central Michigan University

Cameron Alford, Risk & Insurance Coordinator, Evonik Corporation
Beta Lambda Chapter Alumnus, Butler University

Chapter Awards:

Chapter Awards are given based on information submitted on the monthly chapter reports, and communication between the chapters and the Grand Chapter. 

Bowers Award:  The Edison L. Bowers Award was established in 1972 and is the oldest and most coveted of all the awards conferred by the Grand Chapter.  Created to recognize the one single chapter that demonstrates the most well-rounded and organized program for each scholastic year, this award is the highest honor a chapter can receive from the Grand Chapter.    

Chi Chapter, Drake University (pictured below)

Superior Chapters
Alpha Alpha Chapter, Olivet College
Alpha Iota Chapter, St. John's University
Alpha Kappa, Illinois State University
Beta Lambda, Butler University
Beta Phi, University of Texas at Dallas
Chi Chapter, Drake University
Nu Chapter, Central Michigan University
Sigma Chapter, Temple University

Excellent Chapters
Beta Epsilon Chapter, University of Central Oklahoma 
Upsilon Chapter, Ferris State University

Well-Rounded Chapters
Alpha Epsilon, Indiana State University
Alpha Mu, Virginia Commonwealth University
Alpha Omega, Saint Joseph's University
Alpha Tau, University of North
Carolina At Charlotte
Beta Eta, Northern Michigan University
Beta Gamma, California State University, Fullerton
Beta Iota, Troy University
Beta Pi, University of St. Thomas
Beta Rho, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Beta Zeta, University of North Texas
Epsilon, University of Alabama
Iota, Florida State University
Kappa, Arizona State University
Lambda, University Of South Carolina
Phi, Ball State University
Rho, Appalachian State University
Tau, Howard University
Xi, University of Connecticut

Best Kept Secret Award
Upsilon Chapter, Ferris State University 

Black & Gold Awards

Alpha Iota at St. John's University - "Fireside Chat on Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace"

Chi Chapter at Drake University - "Paint Your Future" and "Mock Career Fair"

Sigma Chapter at Temple University - "Distinguished Guest Lecturer Series: Powerful Women In Insurance"

Upsilon Chapter at Ferris State University - "Michigan Insurance Employers Survey"

Roll Call Second Year In a Row Winner: 

Roll Call videos and performances were presented on Saturday morning by each participating chapter. Each chapter had one vote to make for their favorite roll call performance. 

Beta Iota at Troy University "That's What I Like Remix"
Troy University's Roll Call Video

See all of this year's roll call videos on the Grand Chapter You Tube Channel Roll Call Playlist!

*For a full listing of award winners, including the chapters that received International Chapter Awards, please visit the following link: 

Congratulations to all the award winners!

New Chapter Chartering
#GammaIS Growing and You Can Attend!

GIS continues to expand with t
he chartering of the Gamma Gamma Chapter at Iowa State University on  October 14, 2017 .

If you are interested and may be able to attend, please contact your chapter officers or advisor. 

Congratulations in advance! Photos and details will be shared!

Welcome Gamma Beta at The University of Akron

Congratulations and welcome to the newest GIS Chapter, Gamma Beta at the University of Akron in Ohio chartered on September 14, 2017! Special thanks to the GIS students from Alpha Iota, Sigma, Alpha Alpha and Beta Nu for showing their support through their attendance at the chartering, along with an impressive turnout from the industry! We are thrilled to introduce this amazing new chapter! #GammaIS growing!

Welcome aboard!!!

GIS Sustaining Partner Webinars:
Exclusive Access to the Industry!
We are thrilled to offer the new  GIS Sustaining Partner Webinar Series, offering you exclusive access to recruiters, executives, and GIS alumni from our  Sustaining Partners leading up to and following the Annual Conference. Join us for these interactive sessions to learn firsthand about each organization's culture, training programs, employment opportunities, career paths of successful employees, resources, news, and more! Want to know what it would be like to work for a particular company, or what their recruiters look for in top candidates? Ask them directly! Find the registration details  here. These are incredible opportunities to make direct connections, ask questions, and showcase yourself, your chapter, and your members. Please plan to participate, and help us spread the word!

Stay tuned for details on upcoming Sustaining Partner webinars, and don't miss replays of past  installments:
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!
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. 

September 28 - November 22:

Surety and Fidelity Industry Intern and Scholarship Program for Minority Students

October 31:

DW Simpson Actuarial Science Scholarship Program: Deadline for Fall: October 31.

November 1: 
The Griffith Insurance Education Foundation Scholarship: November 1

Westfield Insurance and Westfield Agents Association Scholarship Program: November 1

Ezra Penland Actuarial Scholarship: November 1 st

For additional scholarship opportunities visit:

Alumni Updates and Events
New Alumni Council Leadership! 

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! 

Last week the Alumni Council Leadership team was restructured to better fit our needs.  Alumni Council Leadership now consists of President,  Sabrina Hanitz at , Vice President Jon Perry at , and Secretary Alyssa Bouchard at . F or information on starting a chapter in your area please contact leadership or you can also visit the  Alumni Council Webpage  to contact your local leaders. Thank you for your dedication to GIS!

Pictured below from left to right: Alyssa Bouchard (Secretary), Sabrina Hanitz (President), and Jon Perry (Vice President).

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!  

Recent graduates, another reminder to please help us stay in touch with you and take a moment to fill out this Alumni Update Form. We will keep you informed on all things GIS as your career develops! Without your personal e-mail or new work e-mail addresses we risk losing touch! 

GIS Online Merchandise Store
Get your Gamma Gear 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, ties, coffee mugs, and graduation stoles.

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

Stay tuned, the new GIS football jerseys are going to be coming to the merchandise store soon!

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

Hannah Baxter                                       
Chapter Services and Event Coordinator                                         

  View our profile on LinkedIn Follow us on Twitter  Like us on Facebook  View on Instagram