The Katie School of Insurance and Risk Management attracts some of the best and brightest students from around the country. Throughout their terms at Illinois State University and within the Katie School of Insurance, these students are often recognized for their outstanding achievements. Many former students attribute the Katie School with a major role in their successes by providing students with opportunities to build their professional skills, leadership experience, and exposure within the industry.
These high-achieving students speak for the exceptional quality of education provided by Illinois State University and the Katie School of Insurance. These are some of the Katie School students achieving excellence:
Corinne has also been heavily involved in the College of Business. She is the current Vice President of Membership for Toastmasters International. She is also a past Vice President of Finance for the professional business fraternity Delta Sigma Pi. Corinne is a member of Beta Gamma Sigma and served as a Business Week 2012 Mentor.Corinne McCarter is a Katie School senior majoring in insurance. Corinne is very thankful for all of the wonderful opportunities she has had the chance to participate in. She has attended company visits, networking events, socials, community service events, and conferences. They have all helped broaden her knowledge about the insurance industry and strengthen her professional skills. Corinne's most influential experience was when she participated in the Katie School International Internship in Zurich, Switzerland. She learned a lot from that and was able to understand the insurance industry from an international perspective. When she returned from Switzerland she began her internship at COUNTRY Financial as a Personal Lines Underwriter, where she will be until May.
Corinne was awarded the Spencer Education Award in the spring of 2012. She also received the Hammesfahr Scholarship that is provided by Robert and Susie Hammesfahr. Corinne has also been on the Dean's list three times, earned the Sophomore Honors Designation, and passed her CPCU 500.
Upon graduation in the spring, Corinne will be starting at Aon with their Early Career Development Program in their Dallas, TX office. She is really excited to be the Director of Recruiting for Gamma Iota Sigma and help bring more members into the insurance program. Last semester she created and implemented the Ambassador Program. Corinne, along with other students, travel to high schools and teach the students about the career opportunities within the industry. She says, "I have had the chance to participate in so many rewarding and beneficial opportunities throughout my time in the Katie School of Insurance. I love being able to share those experiences with others so that they can have the chance to pursue the opportunities themselves. I want everyone to be able to love their major as much as I love mine," Corinne states. She is very thankful for all of the support Gamma Iota Sigma and the Katie School of Insurance has given her in pursuing her career and gaining knowledge of the industry.
Eric Mutch is a Katie School senior double majoring in Insurance and Finance. This year Eric has been elected to the position of Vice President of Internal Affairs for Gamma Iota Sigma and is looking forward to another successful year for the Alpha Kappa Chapter.
Throughout his junior year, Eric became very involved within Gamma. He attended events such as: Association of Lloyd’s Brokers Golf Outing, REBEX, NAPSLO Surplus Lines Symposium, RIMS 2012 Philadelphia, and many more. By far the most rewarding experience that Eric has had would be his international internship in London, UK this past summer. He believes this internship really solidified his chose to go into insurance upon graduation.
Upon returning to the states from London, he was selected to do the NAPSLO Internship Program. Through this program he had the opportunity to spend four weeks with Great American Insurance Group in Cincinnati, OH and four weeks with Westrope in Kansas City, MO. This experience gave him exposure to all different lines of insurance and to see both the brokerage and carrier sides of the industry. After completing the NAPSLO internship he was selected to attend the Annual Convention held in Atlanta, GA. From there, he was chosen as the Joseph H. Blades Memorial Scholar as the top intern. This award has provided him an opportunity to go back to London after graduation for an additional three-week internship.
Eric was awarded the Spencer Education Award, CPCU Society Central Illinois Chapter Scholarship, and the Angus Robinson Jr. Scholarship in the spring of 2012. He has also passed professional designations CPCU 500, CPCU 520, CPCU 540, and ASLI 163.
After graduation, Eric has accepted a position with General Star Management as a Property Underwriter Trainee in Chicago, IL. He is very thankful for this opportunity and is excited to begin his career in the insurance industry.
Eric says, “The Katie School and Gamma Iota Sigma have helped me tremendously grow has an individual and put me on the right path towards a rewarding and successful career. I cannot thank Jim Jones, Debbie Babcock, and the rest of the Katie School faculty and staff enough for the opportunities they have provided me. The insurance program has changed my life, and I would highly recommend anyone considering insurance to get involved early and take advantage of everything it has to offer.”
Amy Johnson is a senior insurance major graduating in May 2013. Amy has been actively involved in the Katie School and with Gamma Iota Sigma since the start of her sophomore year. Due to her involvement with Gamma, she was elected as the Secretary on the executive board for the duration of her junior year, and as the Vice President of Student Affairs for the duration of her senior year. She has gained a great deal from her involvement with the Katie School and Gamma, including valuable networking and interviewing skills.
Amy has participated in the many different opportunities offered by the Katie School, including company visits, golf outings, numerous guest speakers, conferences, and symposiums. She has been fortunate enough to attend multiple conferences, such as the NAPSLO Symposium in Chicago and the RIMS Annual Conference in Philadelphia, PA. Because of Amy's involvement, she was also nominated to attend the CPCU Annual Conference in Washington D.C. in September 2012. Attending the conference through the Student Program, she had the opportunity to network with business professionals from all over the world, and partake in many educational sessions and committee meetings.
Amy has been actively involved in many activities and organizations throughout her college career, successfully completing the Katie School Leadership Program, participating as a member in the College of Business Toastmasters, and is currently competing in a student competition put on by FAME (Foundation for Agency Management Excellence), addressing and exploring key issues facing the insurance brokerage industry. Amy has passed her CPCU 500, and is working toward passing her CPCU 520 and CPCU 540 before graduation. Also, she has been a member of the dean’s list every semester of her college career.
Amy finds her four-week international internship in Zurich, Switzerland, provided by the Katie School of Insurance, to be particularly valuable. During the internship, she shadowed individuals from seven different insurance companies, learning about multiple facets of the industry, including claims, underwriting, brokerage, and risk transfer. After Amy returned from Zurich, she interned as a Commercial Lines Underwriter at Indiana Insurance, member of Liberty Mutual Group. Upon graduation, Amy has been hired on by Willis as a Risk Management Analyst in Chicago, IL. She is very excited about the position, and eagerly anticipates starting work for the company in July.
Amy says, “Without the guidance and support of the Katie School, I could not have grown into the young professional that I am today. The knowledge I have gained and the skills I have obtained because of my involvement with the Katie School are invaluable. I would like to give a special thanks to Debbie Babcock and Jim Jones for providing these incredible opportunities. We couldn’t have done it without you.”
Brett Glaser is a Katie School senior double majoring in insurance and finance. Brett has been involved in Gamma Iota Sigma and the Katie School of Insurance since the beginning of his junior year. Brett is the president of Gamma Iota Sigma for the 2012-2013 academic year, and through this experience, he has been able to develop leadership and communication skills.
Brett has actively participated in many different events offered by the Katie School of Insurance including company visits, golf outings, guest speakers, and has also attended conferences like REBEX, Gamma Iota Sigma's International Conference, RIMS and the NAPSLO Symposium.
Brett has also been actively involved in business organizations on campus such as the Katie School Student Leadership Program, Delta Sigma Pi, and the 2011-2012 Business Week Committee.
This past summer, Brett participated in Arthur J. Gallagher's Summer Internship Program. During the program, Brett was able to develop his presentation and sales skills through sitting in on client visits and participating in mock sales meetings. This experience enabled Brett to observe and learn the day-to-day activities and duties of an insurance broker.
Brett is working towards obtaining his CPCU and ASLI designation and has passed his CPCU 520.
Brett says, "I owe all of the success that I have achieved within insurance as an undergraduate student to Jim Jones, Debbie Babcock, and the rest of the Katie School of Insurance staff and faculty. The insurance program at Illinois State, along with the help of the Katie School, set students up to succeed and provide our students with all of the necessary resources and opportunities to succeed inside and outside of the classroom." Brett would like to send a special thank you to Debbie Babcock for helping him schedule, plan, and lead Gamma Iota Sigma events on a daily basis.
Kevin Kostyk is currently a senior insurance and finance double major planning to graduate May 2013. Kevin was interested in insurance coming into ISU and was one of few students who declared the major as a freshman.
Kevin began his college of business involvement by joining Gamma Iota Sigma second semester freshman year. Over the years he has increased involvement and currently holds a position as Director of Publicity. Gamma has allowed Kevin to participate in informational lunches, conferences, company visits, social, and volunteering events.
Looking to improve his public speaking skills, Kevin also joined Toastmasters during sophomore year where he has held positions as Vice President Public Relations, Treasurer, and President. As president Kevin also partook in College of Business Executive Council meetings where he, along with all the other COB student presidents, assisted the Dean in making executive decisions. Kevin also helped plan Business Week 2012, a week-long event filled with business events designed to help all college of business students network and develop professional skills.
Kevin’s heavy Gamma involvement led to two summer internships: an international internship in London and a domestic internship with Indiana Insurance. In London, Kevin was fortunate enough to meet with 13 different companies including carriers, brokers, and Lloyd’s Corporation where he learned how all the components of the Lloyd’s marketplace interrelate. Back in Illinois, Kevin began working with Indiana insurance where he learned about middle market commercial lines of business such as auto, property, workers compensation, and umbrella. He also shadowed employees in various functional roles that play a part in insurance companies such as claims, premium audit, and underwriting.
Kevin would like to thank the employees of the Katie School of Insurance for all the excellent opportunities he has been a part of.
Jean Celestin is currently a junior majoring in insurance. He has been a member of Gamma Iota Sigma and a Katie School student since the beginning of his sophomore year. Through his involvement in Gamma and demonstration of leadership qualities, he was elected as the Director of Fundraising Efforts for the 2012-2013 academic school year.
Jean has been actively involved in Gamma since he joined the organization. He has participated in several events ranging from “Lunch and Learns” to company visits to volunteer efforts at the local food pantry. In the past, he has been selected to attend the NAPSLO Symposium, REBEX Conference, and the Gamma International Conference. He is also a member of the Katie School Leadership Program and Toastmasters.
Some awards that Jean has received are the Spencer Educational Scholarship in March of 2012 as well as the FAME Scholarship in August of 2012.
During the summer of 2011, Jean was given a great internship opportunity with Chubb in Chicago, IL. This was first exposure to the insurance industry and a key factor into his decision to major in insurance. He got the opportunity to spend time working in several different departments within the company, shadow several underwriters, and go out on company visits to brokerage’s the company did business with.
Outside of his participation in Gamma, Jean was named a Liberty Mutual National Leadership Scholar. Along with 80 other students across the nation, he went to Liberty Mutual’s headquarters in Boston, MA. While attending the forum, he participated in several team building exercises, learned about the culture of the company, and networked with several industry professionals. Also, Jean was one of three counselors for the Redbird Risk Management Challenge at Illinois State University. For one week he helped supervise 20 high school seniors in the challenge as well as have fun when the work was finished for the day.
This summer Jean will be interning with Arthur J. Gallagher in Itasca, IL. He is ready to work hard and learn as much as possible about the brokerage within the insurance industry.
Jean would like to thank Debbie Babcock and Jim Jones for everything they have done for him thus far. They are wonderful advisors and are the sole reason I am an insurance major. They do an amazing job teaching, guiding, and building young men and women in the insurance industry. I do not know where I would be without them or the Katie School of Insurance. He would also like to thank all the other Katie School students and faculty for their continued support.
Mark Rogina is currently a senior in the Katie School majoring in insurance with a focus on sales through the Illinois State University Professional Sales Institute. Mark is the Treasurer for Gamma Iota Sigma for the 2012-2013 school year. Mark was also involved in Illinois State Students in Finance and Student Government Association as the Secretary of College Affordability.
He became very active in Gamma Iota Sigma in his junior year. He has attended events such as etiquette dinners, luncheon events, mock interviews, golf outings, Gamma games, and was selected to attend two REBEX conferences as well as the Gamma Iota Sigma International conference. Mark has also been involved as a mentor for younger students through Gamma Iota Sigma and has participated in volunteer efforts such as Clean the Quad and Polar Plunge.
Mark is currently interning at COUNTRY Financial in the Personal Lines Underwriting Services department and has been able to gain important hands on knowledge of insurance policies, coverages, and laws. Through this internship, he was also able to help create training materials which are currently used to train other employees company wide. His internship was instrumental in his growth as an insurance professional and the development of his insurance knowledge.
In the spring of 2012, Mark was awarded the Assurance Agency and Donald D. Mauger and SLA Board of Directors scholarship. Later, in the fall of 2012, Mark was awarded the Foundation for Agency Management Excellence (FAME) scholarship and will be featured in an upcoming edition of Leader’s Edge magazine in their “15 seconds of FAME” section. He is also in pursuit of his CPCU designation and hopes to complete it as soon as possible.
Mark says, “The Katie School and Gamma Iota Sigma have provided me with countless of opportunities to develop myself both as a professional and an overall person. Without the Katie School, I would not be where I am at today. Jim Jones and Debbie Babcock have been instrumental in helping me along in this process and I owe them both a lot of gratitude. I would highly recommend to anyone to get involved with the Katie School and Gamma Iota Sigma. The opportunities are endless.”
Aaron is a senior Risk Management and Insurance major in the Katie School of Insurance at Illinois State University, with a minor in Economics. He will graduate in May with my Bachelor's degree. Currently, he is in the job hunt and has been interviewing for commercial and personal lines underwriting jobs.
In the summer of 2011 and 2012, Aaron completed two internships at Pekin Insurance. His first experience was as a premium intern, and the other as a personal lines underwriting intern. These internships were great opportunities that allowed him to learn a lot about the insurance industry and his desired career path. After seeing multiple aspects of the industry, and through job shadows of underwriters and claims adjusters, he is certain that underwriting is what he wants to do upon graduation.
During his time at ISU, Aaron has been very involved in the Katie School of Insurance. He is an active member in Gamma Iota Sigma and Toastmasters International. Gamma has allowed him to gain great knowledge of the insurance industry and taught him how to interact with professionals. Toastmasters is a professional speaking organization that has given him great confidence in his public speaking ability.
The Katie School of Insurance Student Leadership Program has allowed him to sharpen his soft skills to be better prepared to enter the insurance industry. This eight month program has improved his ability to resolve conflict, negotiate, communicate, work in teams, and enhance his analytical thinking skills. The program culminates in a risk management assessment of a local non-profit organization. This consulting project has allowed him to be more critical of the risks that an organization is exposed to on a daily basis.
All of these experiences have led Aaron to an exciting and diverse career that he is very excited to begin. The Katie School has given him the knowledge and confidence to succeed, and he is very grateful for that.