Tag Archives: Gamma Iota Sigma

Gamma Iota Sigma in Chicago


Last weekend (October 8-11), five students and two faculty (including yours truly) traveled to Chicago to represent Ferris State’s Gamma Iota Sigma Upsilon chapter at the annual International Conference.  Chapter leaders attended Thursday afternoon sessions related to chapter management, and then everyone participated in a delightful welcome reception that evening.  It was heartening to see (and meet) many risk management, insurance, actuarial science, and finance students and faculty from other schools gathered in one large room.  Our colleagues from the Olivet College Alpha Alpha chapter made it just in time for the reception after experiencing multiple issues with their bus transportation.  We were happy for their safe arrival, and ready to quiz them on their transit-related risk management techniques. 🙂

The following morning we listened to breakfast keynote speaker J. Patrick Gallagher, Chairman, CEO, and President of Arthur J. Gallagher and Company.  He marveled at the amazing business that is insurance, and encouraged the students to spread the word about the fantastic career opportunities in this field.  Mr. Gallagher noted that the industry could absorb the entire Gamma Iota Sigma membership of over 2,000 students and still have abounding opportunities.  Friday afternoon was filled with educational sessions and a robust career fair that gave students a multitude of interview opportunities, for both internships and permanent jobs.  Friday evening culminated with an awards banquet at Navy Pier.

Saturday began with the whimsical and always entertaining chapter roll call skits.  The students then embarked on a variety of community service activities, one of which took some of our Ferris State representatives (Jared, Alex, Kate, and Morgan) to clean up Montrose Beach as pictured below.


Saturday evening, the conference concluded with a closing dinner and dance party.  We all made the journey home on Sunday, filled with enthusiasm, ideas, and hope for the future.  Personally, this was my first Gamma Iota Sigma conference and I was incredibly proud of our Ferris State students and the growth of the Upsilon chapter.  I hope that many more of our risk management, insurance, finance, and actuarial science students will get involved with the chapter and have the opportunity to attend future conferences.

Happy Labor Day


It’s Labor Day weekend which marks the official end of summer for most students and workers.  Vacation season is pretty much over as students return to school and workers begin to re-focus on work routines that have typically been somewhat disrupted by the distractions of warm summer months and the vacations taken both by themselves and co-workers.  For those of us in the upper Midwest, having experienced one of the coldest and snowiest winters in several years just a few months ago, we bid summer farewell with considerable trepidation of what the months ahead hold for us.

Nevertheless, this Labor Day weekend is our opportunity to enjoy one final extended weekend of warm weather, outdoor fun, and of course the celebration of the contributions of labor.  It is in the spirit of Labor Day that I would like to highlight the many types of career opportunities afforded by the risk and insurance industry.  Many people view insurance employment in just one dimension – the insurance salesperson.  That seems patently unfair since virtually every industry includes a sales component, and yet people don’t identify these other industries solely by their sales component.  For example, if someone says that they work in the automotive industry, it could be manufacturing, marketing, finance, design, or any number of careers other than automotive sales. Automotive industry careers do not automatically conjure “salesperson” as the default occupation, but insurance does.  Let’s face it, automotive salespersons (especially used cars) have had some public relations challenges as much as insurance sales, so why is the insurance industry occupational perception so biased towards sales?

Don’t misunderstand – the sales function is necessary in the insurance industry, just as it is necessary in any industry.  Without sales of the product, nothing else matters.  It requires talented people to perform this function.  My point is that there is so much more to the insurance industry than sales, contrary to public perceptions.  So on this Labor Day weekend, if you’re curious about other types of labor that comprise the insurance industry, please take a moment to explore the Gamma Iota Sigma Career Resources page.  There is a treasure trove of career information there, and it may just broaden your perception of all that a laborer can do in the insurance industry.

Have a happy and safe Labor Day!